Badger Commander's gaming project this year is to play games from different Metacritic scoring bands to see how they compare. But he also drew my attention to an article on Ars Technica about the extravagant press review event Activision organised for Call of Duty: Black Ops. I didn't realise this kind of crap was still being pulled.
So it falls to me to start a fight to cut out the cancer of bent and twisted journalism with the simple sword of truth and the trusty shield of British fair play. I now disclose what some readers might mistakenly perceive as "payment" for special coverage on Electron Dance.
Sanitarium: I told Good Old Games that the only way I'd look at Sanitarium was if they'd pretend their business was shutting down for a few days. I never thought they'd make good on it. WHOOPS.
Marvel Brothel: Comics Alliance asked me to help raise awareness of the game so they could take the piss out of it for months to come. They forgot to link back to me. Not going to trust those guys again, oh no.
Tidalis: Chris Park was really nice to me. He's just a nice guy. What was I supposed to do?
Revenge of the Titans: Gregg B really loved it so I suspect Cas of Puppygames sent him something. Does anyone know if Gregg got a puppy recently?
Shatter: Sidhe Interactive asked the famous HM of the famous Electron Dance site to visit New Zealand to see their Breakout-inspired game. This offer came complete with flights and first-class accommodation at the Hilton Auckland. The last time I went to NZ I got food poisoning in Rotorua and ended up cancelling a trip to the Waitomo Caves, so I sold the tickets on eBay. I knew immediately that the game was fabulous.
Okay, so this is all FICTION apart from the fact that Chris Park is a nice guy. (Also, let me know if Gregg did receive a puppy recently.)
No developer has attempted to bribe me into covering something. I haven't once been offered a free copy of a game for review... but I think even this makes me uncomfortable. Just think - if someone sends me a game, I'd have to play the damn thing right away. What, with the Empire State Building-sized stack of games I've purchased but still not played?
Electron Dance: never knowingly bribed for a good review two years late.