“You need an early review? Screw you”, screams Bethesda’s latest announcement, a few days prior to the release of Skyrim SE.
According to the studio, they have proven that the review timings are not connected to the quality of the game in any manner, and hence they will continue the policy of sending the review copies of their games one day before the official release. “Earlier this year we released DOOM,” the official post reads.“We sent review copies to arrive the day before launch, which led to speculation about the quality of the game. Since then Doom has emerged as a critical and commercial hit, and is now one of the highest-rated shooters of the past few years.”
Considering it’s the publisher’s job to sell as many copies of the game as possible, this can only mean that Bethesda wants your money sooner rather than later. I mean, if they can make sure that you don’t get to see a review before your credit card is charged for that pre-ordered you placed because of the hype, why shouldn’t they? Additionally, this move can be expected to make the quality of reviews worse, as publications try to rush through the game in order to get their review up first. It’s all about the clicks, isn’t it?
“With the upcoming launches of Skyrim Special Edition and Dishonored 2, we will continue our policy of sending media review copies one day before release,” the post continues. “While we will continue to work with media, streamers, and YouTubers to support their coverage — both before and after release — we want everyone, including those in the media, to experience our games at the same time.”
“We also understand that some of you want to read reviews before you make your decision, and if that’s the case we encourage you to wait for your favorite reviewers to share their thoughts.”
The funny thing is that Bethesda starts this announcement by saying that it really cares about reviews. Well played, sir, well played. *slow clap*
The motive behind this decision seems simple – limit the information you can’t control. It doesn’t matter whether Bethesda titles get good or bad reviews, this is nothing but a ploy to sell more copies. Our advice? Don’t pre-order any game, ever. Let the fiasco that was No Man’s Sky be a lesson. Wait for the reviews and some gameplay before you actually go ahead and buy the game. Better to be late to the hype than to end up with a bad game.
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