There has been a lot of talk lately about the firing of a certain GameSpot editor with possible ties to a bad review and an advertiser pulling thousands of dollars worth of ads from that same site. Some of you may have become disillusioned with the big sites that review video games and take advertising dollars from the video game industry. If you are worried about the same thing happening here let me set your mind at ease.
Here at HMTK the majority of the games we review are games we went to a store and paid money for. We do get some games for free to review but it is a very low number.
You might also notice the complete lack of video game companies advertising on the site. As much as I would love to take their money this site simply lacks the audience numbers required to move money from their hands into ours. Getting the occasional free game out of them is the best we can do.
Because the majority of the games we review are paid for by us we tend to write positive reviews.
Why is this? As one of my long time friends Tom Vasel once said, "I buy the games I review so I am far more likely to buy a game that I know I will like. It's not that I like all games it's that I don't buy games I will not like and thus I do not review them."
It's as simple as that. Why would I go out and spend $50 on a game that I do not think I will derive any enjoyment from? I'm not made of money so unless some company (psst, GameFly) wanted to offer us some complimentary game rental accounts the odds on us reviewing bad games is fairly low.
Now, we do occasionally purchase a bad game and we could review it but... to review such a game would be admitting that we were stupid enough to buy the game in the first place! Why would we want to post a review of some crap game and admit we paid money for it? Granted it might help you avoid buying said game (cough... Wario Ware: Smooth Moves... cough) but it would also make you laugh at us and our noobish ways.
In closing let me make it perfectly clear that no advertiser has the power to influence our reviews. I invite them to try (you can send your checks in, payable to me) but I doubt they will do so. I mean they would need to send me something on the order of $100K per month to influence my reviews and the amount of traffic we get here is not worth that kind of money. If it was worth that kind of money I would want one meeeeeeelion dollars a month to influence my reviews. Get the picture? It would cost the company ten times the value of what they are getting to influence me.
Wondering why I admit to having a price? It is quite simple, if some video game company was stupid enough to pay me that amount of money they would get their awesome review and then I would be independently wealthy and no longer have to do this to make a buck!