Let me educate the gaming media on what “git gud” means. It means practicing and getting better so that you can shut people up who question your abilities in a video game instead of thinking you can just pick up a control and just start playing. That’s how it’s been with video gaming since its inception. And let’s be honest here, even the simplest of video games requires some sort of skill. From Mario to Street Fighter and Doom practice is required. And that pretty much sums up the “git gud” mantra. And like pretty much everything else in life the more you practice the better you get at it. More so if it is your job to review and play games, a concept which Polygon seems to have not fully grasped yet at this point and time.
If you create a video of yourself playing the latest video game, and you end up playing so badly that it makes the game look terrible and that in turn affects your progress in said game, to the point where people watching the video do not get to see the first 30 minutes of said game. Then you have made a bad video, simple as that. You don’t have to be amazing at every single video game you play, but what at least need to exhibit is a basic level of competence and skill. So that when you do play said game, you can showcase the game properly and inform your viewers properly. The issue I have with Polygon’s DOOM video is, that they thought that recording the footage of someone stumbling through the first 30 minutes of the game and then uploading it to Youtube would be okay.
And then use that video as a good example of DOOM being played in a proper manner that is what pisses me off the most about this entire thing. The person playing DOOM appeared to struggle with the game at most points during the thirty minutes, they failed to demonstrate an ability to play at even the most basic of levels. They failed to demonstrate that they even understood the control scheme. They even failed to hit the right buttons in some of the most basic sequences in those 30 minutes of playing. This shows you that they have a total disregard for the game and an unwillingness to learn anything about the game before showing it off to their viewership. A review is meant to judge a game on all fronts and points, from gameplay to physics to story.
How can that be done if the reviewer can barely play the game, let along progress past the first 30 minutes of the game? Most of the gaming press and media want gaming to “grow up” and be more professional as do we the gamer’s, but then online publications like Polygon do something like this? The fact that Polygon would put someone who cannot play a first person shooter in charge of a thirty minute play-through, of one of the most anticipated reboots of any first person shooter in the history of video games speaks volumes to lack of professionalism in games journalism. And as professional companies and journalists, do they apologize for our public follies. No, we go attack and belittle because we were criticized for our objectively abysmal video game reporting.
I expect video game reviewers be able to play a game in all its complexity, otherwise he or she can’t form a differentiated opinion. The content should be relevant, provide insight to the game, and generate interest. If you are so bad that you can’t even show off a game properly then you quite simply shouldn’t be doing it, or at the very least not defend it. And then these games journalists or bloggers, which is the label they will literally, admittedly bounce back and forth between to excuse their unprofessional behaviour in their articles and social media. Then these so called game journalists wonder why publishers and developers don’t want to send them invites to their events, or review copies of their latest games…