Rate your own game

Posted by (twitter: @vilyah)
May 13th, 2014 3:53 pm

As a little experiment, now that we’ve all spent a few weeks judging other people’s entries, here’s a question for you: how would you rate your own game?

Try to forget everything you know about your game and pretend you’re seeing it for the first time, then judge it like you would any of the other entries. If you’ve done any post-compo work, make sure you’re playing the original. Be honest. Apply the same criteria you usually apply when judging other peoples work. What do you think of it when you look through the eyes of a player instead of the creator?

If you’re comfortable to, post the ratings you gave yourself here. It could be fun to look back on when the results come out: you’ll be able to see how much of a gap (if any!) there is between what you and your audience thought of the game.

I’ll rate my game in a comment below.

By the way, I can’t take credit for this idea: Jeremy Nikolai suggested it after LD 24. I just thought it was a cool idea & wanted to bring it back this time around.

10 Responses to “Rate your own game”

  1. vilya says:

    Here’s how I think I’d rate my game, “Project Tethys”:

    Overall – 3. It was fun to play for a while and the controls are nice and responsive, but there’s no difficulty curve to keep it interesting over a longer play session and the explosions get a bit overpowering.

    Innovation – 2. The gameplay seems to follow a pattern already pretty well established by Defender.

    Fun – 3. It’s fun to start with, but once you get the hang of it there’s not enough challenge for it to stay interesting. It needs some more variation.

    Theme – 3. The game chose to interpret “beneath the surface” as “under the water”. The graphics do convey that feeling, but it’s kind of a lazy interpretation of the theme.

    Graphics – 3. Mostly pretty plain graphics, livened up with some nice lighting effects – especially when your laser beams go past your base! I like the shield bubble around your submarine too

    Audio – 3. The music is good, but the explosions get way too overpowering.

    Humor – N/A. It didn’t really seem to be going for humour.

    Mood – 2? I never really know how to score this one. The music created an ominous feel & seeing the enemies arrive en masse created a nice sense of threat, but then it settles into the familiar rhythm of shooting and dodging & that kind of gets lost, I think.

    So that’s me. Anyone else?

  2. sorceress says:

    There is a difference between “what I would rate” and “what I think other people would rate”.

    If a person knows themselves to be more generous than average when rating, then their self-rating is likely to be higher than their peer-rating. Such that “the gap” is meaningless.

    • vilya says:

      Very true. To me the interesting part is not so much “the gap” (that’s just for fun), but what happens when people look at their game with a critical eye. I find it really hard to do sometimes, but it’s a great help in figuring out what worked or didn’t about the game.

    • mortus says:

      You can try to compensate for that. For example, this time I’ve went back to my previous LD games and rated them all while trying to be critical and honest. Then I’ve rated my current game. Then I took a look at my previous games real score and found out following:
      1) The closer my rating was to 3 the more accurate it was related to real score;
      2) If I scored less than 3, real rating is often higher than mine;
      3) If I scored more than 3, real rating is often lower than mine.

      So I seem to be more extreme in my scoring than the virtual ‘average’ voter. Based on that data, I applied the corrections to my current game self-rating and tried to predict what score will it get when the voting is over. Well, I will soon see if my prediction was correct.

      Anyway, I’ve done all that of pure curiosity and not some practical side and I can totally see vilya’s point of taking a critical look on your own work. It’s a fine way to develop your skills by self-analysis and to be able to rate yourself and your work correctly, which is a good thing for any creator IMO.

  3. Maniulo says:

    Huh, probably 5 for Innovation, 4 for Graphics, Mood and Theme, probably 3 for Overall, Audio, Humour, 2 or less for Fun. Pretty generous, but hey, I do like how my game turned out. :)

  4. Tuism says:

    This is a an exercise everyone should do for everything that they do themselves :)

    Overall: 3
    Innovation: 2
    Fun: 4
    Theme: 2
    Graphics: 3
    Audio: 0
    Humor: 2
    Mood: 2

    Seeing as it was my first LD48 AND my first solo jam, AND my first time really digging into Unity in 3D and hardcore code, I’d be inclined to say I had achieved way more than I ever hoped for :)

  5. Snoother says:

    I hope this doesn’t come across as arrogant… But I think I made a pretty good game. There are definitely loads better games in the compo that I’ve played, but I’d still give mine a strong scoring. It was, however, impossible to approach it as a new player. So maybe I’m still being too generous to myself.

    Overall: 4 The lack of agency in the second half of the game is mainly what brings the rating down.
    Innovation: 3 The game borrows tropes and contorts them creatively, so I guess that’s innovative. But it does what it does well without needing to use “new methods”, I think.
    Fun: ? As one commentator pointed out, calling it “fun” would make you a bit sadistic. Engaging is a better word I guess. But even then, the idea is to make you want to stop playing.
    Theme: 3/4 The initial use of theme is quite literal and boring: underground. But there is a deeper use of theme, so it edges towards a 4.
    Graphics: N/A (It’s a non-graphical text game.)
    Audio: 5 I’m really proud of the score, I must admit, especially considering how quickly it was composed.
    Humour: ? Again, not really the funniest of games… Well, maybe in a really dark, anti-joke kind of way.
    Mood: 5 I felt disgusted when I wrote a lot of it, and I feel disgusted when I play it. Definitely works if nothing else as a mood piece.

    I’m sure I’ve over-rated it. But we’ll see.

  6. Slader16 says:

    Overall: 3
    Innovation: 2
    Fun 2:
    Theme: 4
    Graphics: 4
    Audio: 4
    Humor: 0
    Mood: 3

  7. zorfmorf says:

    Mhm that’s an interesting idea.

    Overall: 3 – Lacks in audio/graphic department and has too few buildings.
    Innovation: 3
    Fun: 3
    Theme: 4 – Fits the theme but not too creative.
    Graphics: 3 – The best I can do on my own.
    Audio: 2 – The knocking sounds the workers make is way too loud and annyoing.
    Humor: 3
    Mood: 4

  8. vilya says:

    So now that the results are out, how did you all do? Did the actual score match up with your own ratings for your game?

    For me they did: the scores were more or less the same as the ratings I’d given myself. What I’m disappointed with is how that placed me. In LD 26 a score of 2.5 or better in some categories was enough to put you in the top 25%. This time around the standard was clearly much higher: my overall score was 3.12, which was only just enough to make the top half! Definitely going to have to raise my game next time around…

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