This is what my IGLP&R videos are all about. I started doing this when I made friends with Indie Gamer Chick on Twitter and the GamesMatter campaign started. We got to chatting and she sent me a code for Wyv & Keep. Then, I got schooled by her explanation of what a critic is.
- No bias
- No “walking on eggshells” (I’m not going to use the terminology presented to me) 🙂
- Be honest. In other words, if the game is crap, say so.
- Critics aren’t meant to be nice and sugar coat things.
So, to support her IGC contract (if you play an indie game she’s given you, talk about it on social media, create videos, let’s plays, etc.), I decided on the following format for my videos:
- Each video will be a Let’s Play running 20-30 minutes in length
- Each video will be a recording of my first impression of a game.
That means, I will not have played the game before and I’m trying to capture how I feel about a game the first time I’m playing it.
- I will use my background in UI (User Interface) and UX (User eXperience) to critique the game as I play it.
I have a Masters degree in computer science and am all but dissertation (and one paper) from a PhD in computer science. Each has focused on UI design and application construction.
- I will give positive and negative comments about aspects of the game as I play it should either present themselves.
- I will offer suggestions and solutions as I play as well (when I remember).
- Sometimes I will have such a great/awful time playing that I may forget the suggestions part or I may go quiet as I concentrate, but I try not to do so.
- I try my absolute BEST to not swear in game, but it happens and usually when I’m so irritated I forget. So there may be some parts that are censored.
- I will rate the game from 1-5 stars (in half-star increments) at the end of the video. This is a reflection of how much fun I had playing it and whether or not I’d play/recommend playing the game again.
- The resulting video will be uploaded to my YouTube channel in the IGLP&R playlist. I will use #GamesMatter and the Twitter handle of the dev or game (whichever I have) in the tweet that goes out to Twitter.
- For the time being, I can only give a full IGLP&R to PC and Android (through BlueStacks App Player) games. I cannot do MacOS, iOS, Wii, Wii U, XBox, XBone, PS 3, or PS 4 reviews at this time. I am actually working to get these consoles and the appropriate hardware to record gameplay from them.
Those are my rules. My rating has no bearing on graphics quality, audio quality, gameplay, story, character design, voice acting, script, or anything technical with the game. It has everything to do with FUN, whether I will play the game again, and if I would recommend the game to others.
If the game is updated in the future with more features/customization/graphics or whatnot, I may do another IGLP&R based solely on the new version of the game.
Also, this just recently came to my attention, by doing these, you get to see how a new player reacts to your game, the learning curve, bugs, and other useful information. This, more or less is a usability test for your games.
If I’ve done an IGLP&R for you, DM me on Twitter (@ExcalibursZone) if you want a 1-on-1 Q&A about my experience with your game. I have set up an EZG Skype account that I will only give out to devs for this matter.
Since I have a limited number of platforms I can test on, if you want your game reviewed, let me know. I may know someone who can do that for you. Comment below with your contact information and I’ll pass the request onto others. I can’t guarantee anything, but it’s a start.