Something’s been bothering me lately. No, it’s not the lack of publicity on four corner days, though that in and of itself is noteworthy. I am instead talking about the fact that apparently most “major” news outlets are trying to pass off the end result of barely literate chimpanzees pounding innumerable keyboards with their shit-stained fingers as quality journalism.
While reams of digital paper could be printed on how the mainstream media outlets are guilty of propping some idiotic talking head in a gorilla suit up in front of a camera and letting him spew poorly-sourced, disingenuous shit from his hellmaw like a frat boy murdering millions of knuckle-children nightly to the thought of doing a Hawley Griffin impression down in the men’s locker room (remember: it’s only gay if balls are touching, bro), the absolute worst offenders are games “journalists.”
Let’s face it, ladies and gentlemen: games journalism is a joke. Journalists are either bought-and-paid-for by big time corporate interests, or they’re the kind of unprofessional, editorializing chumps that wouldn’t know objective reportage from a big steaming bowl of horse ejaculate. To illustrate my point, take a look at this piece of “news” published by a UK gaming website concerning the DmC: Devil May Cry reboot – a piece that reports on how Capcom, DmC‘s publisher, has revised their sales figures down due to poor performance of the new title.
Now the fact that Capcom says the game isn’t selling like they thought it would is pretty significant news, especially since there was so much controversy surrounding the reboot. Fan outcry was rather serious, and the decision to change Dante’s character so radically was criticized very strongly, as his characterization was revised to be more edgy and obnoxious. The biggest signifier of how Dante changed as a character was that his hair – formerly white – was now black, implying that this New Dante was a 180-degree departure from Old Dante, and that game developers Ninja Theory were taking the new DmC in a completely different direction – not only in characterization but in gameplay as well. Early response to a demo backed up these fears, as it was revealed that the fast-paced game mechanics of the previous DMC games that rewarded high technical skill were simplified and stripped of much of their nuance, resulting in a game that was much too easy and not nearly as challenging as it needed to be in the eyes of many fans.
Now, cue the news that sales have been lower than expected: the absolute cacophony of “we told you so” that broke upon the landscape at this point was pretty much overwhelming. Yet articles like the one written by this “highly respected game journalist” Ben Parfitt choose not to focus on how fan reaction to the reboot proved to be correct and instead blamed DmC‘s poor performance on the fans themselves. This makes about as much sense as me standing up, walking to the kitchen, and slamming my dick in the refrigerator. Repeatedly.
Somehow, Parfitt equates fans not wanting to purchase a bad game to the reason the game wasn’t selling well. He attempts to draw a line from people being upset at the fact that Dante no longer has white hair, but correlation isn’t the same thing as causation. Fans complaining on the internet and talking about their disdain for Dante’s new look didn’t lead to poor sales of the game – the game itself being bad lead to its less-than-fantastic sales performance.
I don’t know what Parfitt thinks he’s doing in trying to throw fans under the bus and casting blame upon them. He sounds less like a journalist and more like an apologist or paid shill for someone on the inside. Does his cousin work for Ninja Theory? Is Capcom holding his dog hostage? Why not go the professional route and present a clear, objective account of the dispute instead of sensationalizing the issue?
It’s said that there’s two types of journalists: those who work tirelessly to uncover the truth, and those who try to keep it buried. What the fuck possesses a journalist to choose the latter?