How we review games...

When staff at This Is My Joystick review a title or product, rather than providing a final numerical score as so many other publications do, we operate on an ‘Avoid it’, ‘Try it’ and ‘Buy it’ rating. These badges are purely subjective, based on the individual reviewer’s experience with a given game.

The reason we have taken this route is because there seems to be a growing subculture of people who either judge a game, or the quality of a review on its score without delving into the text to see the logic of how the reviewer arrived at their conclusion. It seems almost as if people are ‘reviewing the review’ rather than taking it for what it is; one persons account of their experience with a game. Our system helps put the focus back on what should really be important when it comes to reviews: The text.

Of course our reviewers, as opinionated as we allow them to be, will always strive to approach any game as objectively as possible, however you must remember that it is simply one person’s opinion. Reviews should only ever be used as a guideline; we not here to tell you what you should think of the game or echo your own opinions. We simply offer you our opinions on them, and while we hope that encourages debate in the process, we certainly hold no responsibility should you disagree with any of our staff.

Our staff are not robots, and our reviews will rarely reflect the opinion of the site as a whole. We encourage debate and individuality within the team as well as with our readers. In the case that one of our staff members vehemently disagrees with a selected reviewer, there may be cases where we offer a short ‘second opinion’ at the end of the review. As above, these are all personal opinions and should be treated as such.

Here is a quick run down of our three ratings badges and what they mean to you. In all cases, however, the exact details of where exactly a game’s positives and negatives lie, will always be explained in the review:

AVOID IT: Self explanatory really. Games slapped with this stamp are perceived by the chosen reviewer to be poor or below average, and generally should be avoided. The game is either broken, repetitive, buggy or just low in quality across the board. If there is a market for it, we will make sure to mention it in the review.

TRY IT: Games with this icon mean that the reviewer felt it sat somewhere between average and good. It might be worth a rent, worth picking up for cheap, or in some cases may even be a perfect purchase if you are interested in the particular kind of experience it offers.

BUY IT: The reviewer believes that the game sits between very good and excellent. Games with this badge of honour will be what we consider nearing perfection. If you are really into games that offer the experience that this does, then it is an absolute must-buy. Hell, it should still be under consideration even if you aren’t, such is the quality of the end product.