The lights are on
THQ saw its stock price take a considerable hit today, as a new wave of less-than-enthusiastic Homefront reviews hit the Internet.
THQ's stock closed today at $4.69 per share, down 21 percent from yesterday's closing price of $5.94 per share, which was a high for the last 30-day period. The shift in stock price mirrors the Metacritic rating of THQ's newest release Homefront, which was in the upper 80s yesterday. That average dropped to 72 today, as the review embargo for all gaming outlets lifted (including our review, which went up this morning).
The implication seems to be that investors are putting a lot of weight into Metacritic ratings, which probably isn't a good idea. After all, review scores aren't a reliable indicator for potential sales. Not to mention the fact that 72 isn't that bad of a score – if a company's stock can drop by 20 percent for what most reviewers consider an average rating, what happens when a game really tanks?
[via Gamasutra, image via Nasdaq.com]
Email the author Jeff Marchiafava, or follow on Google+, Twitter, and Game Informer.
the worst part is that these reviews are just nonsense, the game is absolutely fantastic.
That graph is pretty darn ugly towards the end there. That makes me pretty darn scared for other game developers that do not have super stellar scores.
First off, I must thank you guys because before you review surfaced, opinions were all over the place. The game was either genius or pushed out way too early. I like knowing that I can rely on u guys...usually, lol. With that siad, it must feel good to have your review score refelect metacritic so far. In reference to this article, I don't think it's the actual score that matters, but the hype that leads up to it. For example, if MW3 launches this fall w a metacritic of 7.5...it will b disastrous, especially in such a crowded genre. If a new IP launches w a 7.5, but has offered something new, something to build on, it will b fine. Unfortunately, homefront pushed hard, some dubbed it a cod killer and now that it is released, ppl are very disappointed. This isn't because of a lack of ideas, which it is in part, but because it comes off as lazy; another good idea wasted. It was obviously pushed out too early. I would b willing to hazard a guess...they figured that they could create a game and take advantage of the cod numbers. Heavy advertising to generate hype and preorders, banking on the fact that even a slice of the pie is good. If u are going to truely tackle the cod phenomonon, u better come out swinging. It will cost u a fortune. Do not release early or at the wrong time and do not call it a cod killer...let us decide. I can understand why ppl are upset...I'm not. I have killzone3, which by the way was not advertised well by Sony, and crysis 2. These are two games that seen to be very well polished. They are just too smart and strategic to be cod killers.
So does this mean Homefront 2 is not happening?
I dont necessarily care for reviews as a definitive (no offense GI ). Its dumb that their shareholders are putting weight in metacritic as a catalyst to jump ship, though they are business men/women, that is the nature of their job (I was about to make an analogy, but it wouldve been innapropriate). That said, Homefront never really clicked with me,from previews and youtube, so I dont know about the game personally. I do know that shooters are a dime a dozen these days, so its unfortunate to see Kaos studios effort undermined by complete redundancy. Shooters are really an overcrowded genre, Its hard to stay interested at this point, since its somewhat true that redundant is where we're at this generation.
I will try out Homefront but not at 60 bucks. I dont really care about reviews but i wont spend 60 dollars on a game that is being considered only average by everyone i talk to and from review sites.
No kidding, and you guys said it wasn't terrible, just that it could've been a lot better. Man that sucks.
I don't think we should be blaming Metacritic for this. I'm not even sure it's the wave of negative reviews that were published after the game was released (yesterday!). There's not necessarily a positive correlation between Homefront's pre-orders/day-of-release sales and negative reviews published on Homefront's release day.
I think it was more a failure of THQ to market this game and meet pre-release expectations (2 million units sold). Mediocre pre-orders of the game are likely what made THQ stockholders nervous (pre-orders are a potential predictor of game sales). The negative reviews complicate this situation because now word of mouth is out that the game does not live up to the hype. That will effect future sales. And that is likely motivating the response of investors.
THQ is in the big boys club. This is all part of the business, just as movies, books, television and every other mode of entertainment is affected by critical reviews.
As far as Metacritc goes, there are a number of games I would not have tried had I not read critic and user reviews of them (Demon's Souls comes to mind). Obviously, simply going by the aggregate Metacritic score is superficial and largely insubstantial, but Metacritic serves a practical purpose in collecting reviews so that gamers can make informed opinions before they make purchases.
Thats bad news for THQ. I'll still play this one(rental).
to be honest i never had high hopes for this game succeeding commercially or critically it just didnt have that fps hype of oh man i have to play this! and didnt really seem innovative just watching previews showed me how bad the mechanics were and to make a good game you need a good story AND good gameplay sadly this game seems like it had a lot of effort put into it yet it goes nowhere perhaps it was the crap marketing (never saw one ad for it in public) but it was bound to go nowhere
If only I had the money to buy me some stock. THQ has some decent releases coming in the near future and I wouldn't be surprised if any of them do really well. Which in turn would make said stocks go back up. BUY, BUY, BUY!!!
That sucks. When did this industry get so harsh? THQ bombs for making one mediocre game, but someone still managed to make a Fusion Frenzy 2?
This isn't fair to THQ. The Metacritic rating, while a good source for a collection of reviews, is not a great outlet for quick-look judgement. The reviews are not even weighed by popularity or impact of certain media outlets and journalistic points of view, it factors in each random "I have a website too!" review equally. I hope they can bounce back from this, as the industry needs all the help it can get to progress through this period.
I have the game and I have a total blast playing with friends even the party system is a little f-d up. Its something new and its not always about graphics.. its about gameplay fun.