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Why Reviews Are Next to Useless

Started by John Wick, July 17, 2001, 08:34:00 PM

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Theory of X


More or less, you're probably correct on what online communities are. Mouth breathing mammals.

My main point is that 48 hours ago, I really only recognized Mr. Wick from a few posts I had read. They tend to stick in your mind...take that for what it is worth.

Yesterday I stumbled across a splattering of old posts in which I watched Wick do battle royal with a group of mouth-breathing humans. These humans, by the way, bond and form friendships in almost a communal way. I really didn't realize that he had such a history (I have to pick an choose my words...haven't received my email back from Wick with his approval of my post).

I guess the more I read from him, the more I dislike the man. You can dislike me for that, but I really don't want to dislike anyone...but he tends to push me in the direction of anger. If he didn't come off as an arrogant arse...oops...Wick flame post to bed.


---Steven William Shaw

[ This Message was edited by: Theory of X on 2001-08-17 05:44 ]
"I don't claim to know everything...I just know what I don't know."--Me

John Wick

The innevitable pattern:

1) Wick posts an opinion not directed at anyone in particular.

2) Someone gets pissed off because Wick spoke his mind and writes a scathing personal attack.

3) Wick says, "It's okay if you disagree with me, but don't go making personal attacks, okay?"

4) That Someone Else says, "John Wick's an arrogant ass because he thinks only his opinion counts! Everyone's got a right to express their opinion!"

5) Wick shakes his head and walks away saying, "But that's all I was doing in the first place..."

C'est la vie.

Now that this has become a Wick Bash, I'll be leaving it alone.

Take care,

(I may be an arrogant ass, but at least I don't put a 3"x3" picture of myself at the end of my posts...)

[ This Message was edited by: John Wick on 2001-08-16 14:11 ]
Carpe Deum,

Theory of X

A wise person once told me:

"it's not what you say, it's how you say it."


John, maybe you should look behind you as you walk...a trail of shit follows. Take that as a personal attack, or merely an observation. I call it an observation. Your words have a stong tendency to piss people off. Why do you think that is?

As i've stated before, I have been a reader of RPG boards for some time. During this time, only one name could make me stand up and say: "I wonder what this arse has to say now." One person John, out of thousands of posters. One. Do you think it was jealousy over your success? No. Hell, until 48 hours ago I didn't even know you had anything in print. I must be ignorant? Yes. I've been a closet designer, and could have really cared less about studying the industry, and sucking up trivial knowledge about a game buried at the bottom of my local RPG store's bookshelf (which is where Orkworld is). Having a book in print doesn't mean shit to me. You can call it success if it makes you feel better.

Keep sprinkling your words with sarcasm and arrogance, and pretend that the 'knee-jerking' that occurs stems from the fact that the audience is filled with asses.

At least I don't have to go to my company picnic and overhear someone say: "I've been gone for 3 months, does everyone still hate John Wick?" (a quote from a post)

Paint me as a monkey-boy, or a 5 IQ gimp. Paint me anyway you want, and fill it with structured babbling. I do not mind. Just don't paint me as a cold-hearted John Wick 'type'.

Someday I hope you attempt to contribute instead of deconstruct. Approach ideas and polish them. Analyze them. Wonder why people think the way they do. If you keep discounting the emotion that drives a poster's thought, you are discounting your market, and yourself.

Carry on, big John Wick. Keep being 'the Wick'.

Thanks and have a wonderful day.
"I don't claim to know everything...I just know what I don't know."--Me

Clinton R. Nixon

I can't believe that in one week, I have two GREAT examples of how not to act on the Forge.

It's 5:30 am for me, and I'm not coherent yet, but: if you have a problem with anyone on the Forge, real or imagined, take it offline. We really don't need that here.

Specifically in this example: if someone, including Theory of X here wants to vehemently argue John's point about reviews being useless, go for it! I encourage spirited debate.

If Theory of X, or anyone else, wants to make an attack on John Wick, me, or anyone else - they can take their business elsewhere. That sounds strong, and is meant to be. I want any random person to click on any thread on this board and find quality. This last page or so of discussion is not quality, and should have never happened.
Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games


I agree.

I think this old argument is worth rehashing, but the vehemence is a bit much.

Sheesh, vive la difference and all that.

Personally, while I can see where John is coming from, I just don't have the time to seek out and look at every game I'm slightly interested in. I do, however, have the time to have a furtive look at the odd review and I trust myself enough to be able to critically evaluate the review. Thus rather than looking at the product directly, I look through a subjectively obfuscated window (or two) instead. Not ideal I'm sure - but there you have it.

Philosophically, I think sometimes we do take advice from people we don't know/trust all the time. If we had to constantly re-evaluate the work of others all the time I don't think I'd ever get to work in the morning. Hey, maybe I'm on to something there......


Queensbery rules guys, keep it above the belt!



[ This Message was edited by: Nuredin on 2001-08-17 09:17 ]


On 2001-08-15 03:47, Theory of X wrote:
I really had no clue that the RPG community and Mr. Wick had such a bad relationship.


Is that everyone in the community or just a few loud mouths? I can never tell.


It always seems to be a few.  Of course few being a relative term.  A few at one place is almost everyone there a few at another is a scant percentage of those there.

Personally I feel its a few here and a few there and most of them don't have much else to do.  I also consider the fan following you have at cons especially among the L5R folks and those who like your games.  

The RPG community is a lot broader than just those who frequent forums and game sites.  Thats one thing I have noticed is that a lot of those who spend all that time online forget about all the rest and only see those that are also online.

Well there are my two cents.  Later.

joshua neff

As someone with no official role in this forum, I'm with Clinton. Seeing this kind of personal attack on the forum distresses me. Of course there should be healthy debate. But lets keep personal attacks out of it, eh? Sure, John can be opinionated. This puts him in the bracket of "Pretty Much Everyone On The Internet". & they
re just his opinions. I don't find John to be at all "deconstructive" as opposed to "constructive", in this or any other argument. & if people can't discuss this topic in a reasonable fashion, maybe they should just let it go.

But no personal attacks.


"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes

Michael T. Richter

QuoteHow can anybody - I don't care who they are - tell you whether you should or shouldn't buy something based on their own perceptions?

That negative review of 7th Sea still have you down?  Geeze, Wick!  Get over it already!

Here's a hard fact you're apparently unable to grasp: I have a finite amount of time and money.  (The two are often interchangeable.)  Watching a movie sucks out two hours of my life.  Two hours that could be spent doing something which profits me or which I enjoy (or both) if it turns out I hate the movie.  Similar economies of money and time apply to buying books or RPGs.

Sometimes I have the time and/or money to take the chance.  Lately, for example, I've had quite a bit of free time and have been willing to risk going to movies that suck on the outside chance they're good.  Sometimes, however, I don't.  So reviews -- especially well-written ones -- help me filtre things out.  In the two hours that I waste in a bad movie I could have read HUNDREDS of reviews of DOZENS of movies....

You don't like reviews.  Fine.  Waste your money (and, more importantly, your time) on things you don't enjoy.  I'd rather risk missing out the occasional few-and-far-between gem than risk wasting my time on the all-too-common crap that is out there.

Reviews are a filtering tool.  Nothing more, nothing less.  And your getting a bad review on your game isn't an excuse to go ranting against reviews for the next century.

Michael T. Richter

On 2001-07-27 17:15, John Wick wrote:
I said, "It wasn't spicy."
What I should have said was, "It isn't spicy to me."

When a reviewer writes his review, it's important to give the reader a sense of context. All too often, I see reviews of... oh let's say the AMBER DICELESS RPG:

"The rules are too vauge."

Well, obviously, considering the type of play that game invokes. Duh.

If you can't insert the appropriate "in my opinion" and "to me" and so forth in a review, you're pathetic as a reader.

A review is an opinion piece.  Period.  End of sentence.  If you can't cope with opinion pieces, just stop reading.

Michael T. Richter

On 2001-07-27 18:34, John Wick wrote:
Check the book out yourself. Don't let anyone else tell you about the quality of the book. It doesn't matter how much you respect the other person's opinion or taste: SEE IT FOR YOURSELF.

I have 30,000 pages worth of material on my "must read now" stack.  I have about 100,000 pages worth of material on my "should read before I die" stack.

Where, precisely, do you intend me to get the time to read EVERYTHING that crosses my path on the off chance that I find a gem in the rough?  Do you have some secret to immortality that you're willing to share with me?


Hmmmm.... somebody who just joined today and used info about a bad 7th Sea review off of the discussion of this arguement over at (the fact that there is a discussion on this discussion is pretty sad in itself)  Sounds like somebody just got bored and wanted to fan the flames a little.

>A review is an opinion piece. Period. End of sentence. If you can't cope with opinion pieces, just stop reading.

If you can't cope with Wicks opinion just stop reading.  Well since you can't obviously do that considering you came over here signed on the forums just to get into this arguement.