Just as GamerGate was about to start, there was a massive buildup of outrage about the games media on the imageboard known as 4chan. The anonymity of posters on 4chan produced some amazing posts as well as some absolute filth. There was basically only one rule—“no child pornography”.
There was no central authority to organize GamerGate, dictate the goals, lay out the methods of achieving them, or even propose an established meeting place. People were simply outraged but had no idea what to do, so they flocked to 4chan and spammed the living hell out of it.
Brave new imageboard
The action was finally crystallized when moot, the founder of 4chan, started actively banning all mention of GamerGate or related personalities on 4chan. This was done under the excuse of “privacy violation,” but eventually the relationship of moot with Anita Sarkeesian was established.
When people started massively migrating, they choose a Reddit subforum called KotakuInAction. This is where the email campaigns were organized and encouraged. Someone would dig up advertisers’ email info and post it, prompting others to launch a barrage of emails to them.
Man the email cannons!
There was no set template, instead encouraging emails to always be personal yet have a single conclusion: Polygon, Kotaku and the rest of SJW faux-media are bad at what they do and inherently evil, hence will you please stop buying their ad space. This resulted in a loss of over $1 million to Gawker media, as anonymous insiders confirmed.
Needless to say, this ruffled some feathers over at Gawker. They contacted their friends at Reddit and kindly asked them for a favor. Namely, to shut up KiA. This resulted in a gradually increasing censorship of KiA, culminating in vaguely accusing its members of harassment for posting publicly available PR contact addresses.
Some went from 4chan to form another imageboard, called 8chan, however, this was again attacked by SJWs, as they even tried DDoSing it and at one point managed to convince the registrar of the domain that 8chan was hosting child porn.
The founder of the 8chan, HotWheels, has even had to fight to keep his Patreon account alive, which is how he funded server costs of 8chan.
Like phoenix from the ashes
The result of GamerGate was the formation of certain gaming news websites that promise to provide real information, but this time around, it will be different. But what can they change, if anything at all?
One of these new gaming news websites that spawned out of GamerGate is BasedGamer.com, started by Jennie Bharaj, who famously demolished HuffPo host with her “Listen and Believe“.
While BasedGamer does promise to offer a new way of looking at reviews, there is still the problem of funding. Eventually, if its primary source of income turns out to be ad revenue, BasedGamer could end up in the same situation as GameSpot, where a major games developer buys up all ad space, expecting a favorable review of their latest title.
Ditch the scoring system
Game reviews are extremely problematic as well by their nature. The scoring systems can range from “5 stars” to “percentile points,” but all of them are inherently subjective. One reviewer may give a game 5/10, while another may give it 8.8/10 and we still may not know if the game is any good.
While we can probably agree which games deserve 1/10, because we can clearly see the objective flaws such as a bad camera, being loaded with bugs, or crashing all the time, deciding which games deserve the top score is a lot trickier. Again, everyone has his own favorite genre and scores those games a lot higher than the average reviewer would.
Metacritic, a review aggregate website, even got a lot of bad flak when it turned out game developers paid a lot of money to those games that essentially gamed the scoring system and achieved a certain score. Again, these scores are completely arbitrary and should not have such weight at all.
The problem is that people hate making their own decisions, instead focusing on hype and fanboyism. The easiest way for an average gamer to decide if he wants a game or not is to go to his favorite gaming news website, click on the link and read the score.
This fosters an industry in which unfinished games are a norm and day-1 DLC or bugfixes a golden standard. Hype becomes essential and everything else falls by the wayside. Why even bother with making anything good? Just rehash the old story, change a few textures and ship it. Hell, you can even reuse old assets and cut costs even further.
It’s no longer the good old days
You used to be able to punch in a cartridge and play it, knowing that the game is at least finished. Today? You will be lucky to find even AAA releases that don’t need day-1 patches.
This means that you should never, under any circumstances, pre-order games or buy them at launch, no matter how hyped they are or who made them. That’s simply the sad situation we are in.
Of course, this situation is untenable and something has to give. Gamers have already caught on to the ploy, and, despite the attempts of silencing and harassing the people who have swallowed the red pill, the truth is out in the open and there is no coming back.
While can be almost certain that clickbaity faux-gaming websites are on their way out, the actual future of gaming news seems to be crowdsourcing. While Youtube or Twitch may be the best way to check out what a game actually looks and feels like before purchase, even streamers can be influenced in a myriad of subtle ways that skew their opinion.
In conclusion, it seems that the best way to find out if you truly want to buy a game is to go out on a forum and ask for people’s advice. On average, people do have common sense and make the right choices. Who knew?