Following Game of the Year status, a few bloggers, YouTubers and social media experts really, really want you to know that they didn’t much care for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Boards have been flooded with posts such as “Dragon Age: Inquisition Didn’t Really Appeal to Me,” “Come See What I Thought About Dragon Age: Inquisition,” “I Played 2350 Hours of Dragon Age Inquisition and HAATED IT,” and “I Hate Dragon Age Inquisition Really a Lot Seriously.” (OK, I’m paraphrasing. But seriously, it’s a good thing that Dragon Age: Inquisition can’t be turned into some sort of pun.) Complaints range from a mediocre battle system to terrible characters and writing.
Naturally not all games will appeal to all people, but one interesting facet about the current smattering of reviews is that they continually state that Dragon Age: Inquisition is objectively bad. Like a two year old who says vegetables are “gross” rather than “I don’t like vegetables.” If something is beloved by the majority of people then objectively bad may be the wrong title, right? Games are art and entertainment and art and entertainment are subjective. You can dislike things but that doesn’t make them objectively bad unless you are the center of the Universe and the decider upon all merit.
Are you? Are you that?
This type of negative reviewing has always been a problem; it usually comes on the heels of a well-received game as a desperate clamor for page views. But the problem is that it really doesn’t help; ticking people off isn’t a fantastic way to build a loyal readership. All it means is that writers will get a skew upwards in page views temporarily, which will jam up their conversion and engagement statistics, and then the readership will abruptly drop off because they hate them. Very few people have thought to themselves “I totally disagree with this person’s opinion. I’m going to keep reading their opinions forever.” And most of them aren’t going to click links or interact with ads, so they’ll screw up any monetizing stats you’ve got going on.
But of course, some people just live to upset other people and cannot fathom that their opinion isn’t the most prized of all opinions. Dragon Age: Inquisition certainly isn’t a perfect game, but ranting about how much you hate it is about as interesting as ranting about how much you love it. Either way, no one really cares.