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Child Of Light Critical Reception: The Highs And Strange Lows

It's one of those instances where you wonder: What were the critic's priorities for this review?

Child of Light has met with decent critical acclaim, but it has been interesting to watch the scores during the last 24 hours or so. Has anyone else noticed that the earlier scores were higher, while the later scores are significantly lower?

It's also interesting to see such wildly different takes on the game. Some sources, such as Edge, say the game feels "oddly empty" and don't really fall in love with the artistic beauty of the production. Others, like TheSixthAxis, are obviously impressed with the game's fairytale vibe, and were taken on a memorable ride. So, what's with the heavy discrepancy? Any ideas?

In the same vein, I saw an editorial posted at VGRHQ wondering if the critics that enjoyed the game are merely victims of nostalgia. The author eventually concludes that in fact, this isn't what's happening, and I'd agree with that. But you may also notice that at the time of that article's writing, Child of Light held an average Metascore of 86 (PS4 version). Now, it only has a 79. See what I mean?

I'm always intrigued by games that generate such a wide variety of analyses from reviewers. :)

Related Game(s): Child of Light

Tags: child of light, child of light reviews, child of light review scores

4/28/2014 9:54:35 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (25 posts)

xenris
Monday, April 28, 2014 @ 10:15:58 PM
Reply

Because its turn based I bet. It seems like no matter how objective a reviewing is trying to be if you have people who hate turn based games reviewing it it is going to get a lower score. Its most likely a matter of taste that the reviewer has, and maybe some of the really high scores like 10 are slightly influenced by nostalgia?

It is weird how big of a gap there seems to be, when this does happen its usually not this big a gap :

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, April 28, 2014 @ 11:05:11 PM

That's probably a big part.

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Temjin001
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 12:16:39 AM

wasn't Bravely Default turn-based and praised by it's critics?

Last edited by Temjin001 on 4/29/2014 12:16:54 AM

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Underdog15
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 1:07:12 AM

It was handheld on a DS, though. Many critics out there seem to think turn based is ok on the DS. Just not anything else, I guess.

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Temjin001
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 10:00:00 AM

you should write some of them Underdog and ask 'em =)

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Underdog15
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 6:46:20 PM

That sounds like a lot of work. :p I think I'm happy sticking to my loose generalizations. XD

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, April 28, 2014 @ 11:07:53 PM
Reply

I never consider nostalgia to be something people are "victims" of with a project like this, it's clearly intended. All games working from older mechanics feel oddly empty, but that's why they are great. They aren't there to take care of you or cater to your needs for 10,0000 things to happen every minute. You make your fun in them. So the review should be based on how well it executes the goal it aims at.

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homura
Monday, April 28, 2014 @ 11:51:47 PM
Reply

The light slowly dims in this one.

Seriously, it's just another evidence that people has different points of view. The important thing is to know the difference between the reviewer who just whine about things he didn't understand about the game and doesn't do enough to open his mind to understand it and a reviewer who really analyze the game properly.

Might check this out someday. Cause I have my Agarest War 2 fulfilling my turn based needs this days.

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Underdog15
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 1:12:16 AM
Reply

Even just seeing gameplay video tells me it's not a 5. That seems ridiculous. I also doubt 10 is accurate, either. But you never know, I guess.

As for nostalgia in reviewers, I don't think it ever plays a large role. I would think for that style of game, if it doesn't keep up, fans of the genre would be more critical.

This past year, I replayed FF6 on PSP (the PSN download). I enjoyed it because I played it back in the day on SNES (when it was called a "Fenix Down"). But I could not sit for long periods anymore. It felt really slow, and I couldn't help but feel like I was wasting time between load screens to and out of battle. I couldn't possibly imagine that game, if it were brand new first time ever today, scoring any higher than a 7 max. Even for people who love the days of old.

So, that alone tells me the critics giving 5's are trying to make a point.

Which also makes no sense, by the way. I get fighting for something that feels like it's dying... but to encourage the death of a genre? Strange.

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shaytoon
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 1:21:09 AM
Reply

this is why i hate reviews. cant even enjoy games anymore without it being bashed upon. i preordered this game and could care less what anyone says about it. when i play, itll be either great or bad, whatever the case, i dont need the general public making me feel like junk on why i spent $15.

Last edited by shaytoon on 4/29/2014 1:21:35 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 1:39:59 AM

If you feel like "junk" because of what random strangers say online, you've got your own problems.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 4:57:46 AM

Then stop pre-ordering and see how it turned out first?

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shaytoon
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 10:20:41 AM

i didnt mean literally. no game review has ever swayed me from not playing or purchasing. if anything, i play the game first and check out reviews after to see what their opinion is and depending on the site and my mood, i will comment.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 4:12:58 AM
Reply

"Has anyone else noticed that the earlier scores were higher, while the later scores are significantly lower?"

That's *always* the case. Always. I don't know why, but I suspect that the publisher has done their homework and handed out review copies and NDA dates a bit earlier to the "friendly" sites.
It's always been like that with all the games I've been particularly interested in (and thus kept a keen eye on).

I particularly remember this to be the case for Saints Row 3, that one looked like were going to land on a 90ish metascore at first. Same with Crysis 3 as well - it started off very high and then, a bit later, came a sea of lower ratings pulling it down.

It's quite interesting, this. If I ran a metascore site I'd create some mechanics that made a graph for the titles describing how the metascore developed over time. That'd show how common this is.


Last edited by Beamboom on 4/29/2014 4:17:15 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 11:14:46 AM

That's not always true at all. It's only true for the bigger blockbuster games that take longer, as the more you play, the more you'll find things to complain about. The shorter games and indie games are a little different.

As for your explanation concerning review copies to "friendly sites," that's not true, either. Well, unless by "friendly" you just mean big. GameSpot, IGN, etc. will always get their review copies ahead of others.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 2:36:18 PM

Ah well I wasn't really talking about small indie games at all. Notice my examples.

I dunno why it is like this, I do not claim to have any answers, but it *is* my experience with the titles I've kept a keen eye on (ergo not small indie games and other small fish) typically some unknown small site pops up real early with a very high rating pulling the average way up before it evens out.
One can only speculate why.

Last edited by Beamboom on 4/29/2014 3:15:50 PM

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___________
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 4:29:42 AM
Reply

really looking forward to this its nice to see allot more developers trying to put such a visual flair on their games!
i just hope it has allot more depth and variety to the level design and gameplay than what the recent rayman games have.
there just so basic and repetitive, fun for a half hour or so, but after that youve fallen asleep!

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Beamboom
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 4:56:57 AM

I'm pretty sure it will fall short for your expectations.

In fact I'm sure of it, and you'll soon after post something like this;

"It's just SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO shallow and repetitive, you dew the same OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN! This is what's wrong with the industry today, it's a deadd given! There just so basic and repetitive, fun for a half hour or so, but after that youve fallen asleep!zzzzZZZZzzZZZZZZ!"

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Underdog15
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 7:34:47 AM

I disagree Beam. That was far too short to be a post of complaint by him.

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___________
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 9:16:26 AM

probably will, sorry my standards are a little higher than yours......

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coverton341
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 5:03:05 PM

You didn't throw in the obligatory "allot"


Last edited by coverton341 on 4/29/2014 5:03:45 PM

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Underdog15
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 6:48:03 PM

The difference between our standards aren't that yours are higher. The difference is that everyone else's are consistent and legible.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 4/29/2014 6:48:45 PM

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Banky A
Thursday, May 01, 2014 @ 7:20:32 AM

You gotta admit though bro, Beam did a pretty good impersonation of you c'mon :)

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MRSUCCESS
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 11:28:28 AM
Reply

I heard it's turn based? Wbat? I need to get it!

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CrusaderForever
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 1:26:07 PM
Reply

Just played the Demo on the PS4 and it's really good. I highly recommend if you haven't yet to try the demo at least. What a beautiful game with great depth and fun combat! Well done Ubiart.

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