From hate to love back to unmitigated odium, it looks like Portal 2 customers are gaming review aggregator Metacritic in an attempt to both sabotage and rehabilitate the average user score by playing “score tennis,” tagging the physics puzzler with extreme scores and pithy appeals.
Reading the user scores for any of the versions–PC, PS3, or Xbox 360–feels like stepping between picket lines.
“Come on people for how long are we gonna take this crap, 60 bucks for 5 hours,” writes a low-scoring Portal 2 reviewer. “The critics are also getting more unbelievable every day, and most of us get fooled by them.”
“Ignore all the whiners on here,” responds a perfect-10-scoring Portal 2 reviewer. “Same as always with a Valve release you have people complaining about everything except the game itself.”
“Valve disappointed on this one… The game is good, but not groundbreaking in anyway [sic],” writes another disenchanted Portal 2 player. “It costs about $30-35 too much money and should have stayed in Orange Box 2.”
“I’m writing this review purely to offset the uncalled for bashing against this game,” counters another Portal 2 fan. “It’s a shame to see people getting so upset over an optional DLC which adds little other than non-essential cosmetic change.”
“If this is the game of the year, then it definitely is a bad year for games,” complains a third. “[I] could see how this game could be challenging and funny to 10 year olds, but for adult gamers its [sic] just too easy and childish in its execution.”
“Pay no attention to the negative reviews, this is still a fantastic, funny, mind-bending experience that will go down in history,” counters a third. “It takes all the good things about the first, and multiplies them, and also adds a handful of innovations.”
When Portal 2 launched on Tuesday, user scores on Metacritic averaged below 5 (out of 10) points, or sub-average (Metacritic uses the full range, so a 5 is right down the middle, not “failing”). Over the past 48 hours, those scores have risen to a “generally favorable” between 7 and 8 out of 10. PC gamers are the most active on the scoreboard, tallying 1,062 ratings as of this post, with 809 generally positive, versus 219 generally negative, and 34 “mixed.”
Missing from most of these reviews? An actual review.