A word about ratings
Note: this post has been superseded by a new rating system. For more information, check the ratings page.
So I’ve gone back and added scores out of ten to each game I’ve done a text review for so far (excluding the L.E.A.P. disks) and I will continue to do so for the rest I plan on reviewing. However, I’d like to explain a little about what the numbers actually mean.
First of all, the score is an overall score of how much I would recommend this game to someone who has never played it before. This doesn’t necessarily mean it was or wasn’t a groundbreaking or famous game, or that its graphics/sound/music/etc. were great/crap, but that the overall experience was good enough that I hope you’ll check it out, or bad enough that I’d say “don’t bother.” Also, I’m grading on a true ten-point scale, which means that 5 is average, not bad; and that 7 is pretty good, not just average. Or, in other words:
- Don’t bother. This game sucks and you suck if you like it.
- Not really recommended for anyone.
- I didn’t like it much, but you may.
- Eh, it’s OK. Play it if you’re bored.
- This game is average. I’d play it every so often, but I probably wouldn’t seek it out.
- Above average. This game probably made it into my regular Atari-playing rotation.
- Very good. You will most likely enjoy this quite a bit.
- Excellent! A top tier game.
- Games that make it here are the cream of the crop. If you haven’t played this game yet, stop reading and go get it!
- So far I have only given out two 10’s. Both of them are games I still play today, even though my main Atari-playing days are behind me. Everything — the graphics, sound, music, controls, gameplay, replayability factor — all comes together perfectly, resulting in nothing less than the most stellar game it could possibly be. (As a side note: if I were to review M.U.L.E., it would also receive a 10.) (Also as a side note: one of the two games I gave a 10 to I readily admit I am heavily influenced by nostalgia and you may disagree with my rating. The other one, though, I think most people should agree with.)
These are all subjective, of course, and you’re welcome to disagree with any of them. Also, keep in mind that these scores are specifically for the Atari 8-bit versions of these games. If you’re mad that I gave a low score to, say, Pacman, keep in mind that it’s just because this specific version wasn’t all that great. There may be better versions out there for different systems.