Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bought

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Garth
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Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bought
Postby Garth » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:24 am

He's been taking questions: http://twitter.com/RichStanton
This is the same guy who had a rant about CVG the other day BTW: http://www.grcade.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=32006

Some stuff he's said so far:
Let’s have a story about the kind of behaviour Future indulge in. I once went to Valve. Seattle! Gabe! Exciting!
PC Gamer asked me to take some photos of something very specific. A wall of concept art. I asked permission, and did so.
Valve went nuts. This wasn’t approved! Do you know what PC Gamer’s editor, Tim Edwards, did?
He denied I had ever been asked to do it. Said PCG were merely the innocent recipient. Lied, in other words. banana split.
That is the kind of behaviour Future encourages in its staff.
Thankfully, most of them avoid it. But if you’re a guy like Tim, happy to throw anyone under the bus, Future is the place to be.

Future’s a tragedy. The best editors and writers, people like Dan Dawkins, Andy Kelly, Matt Castle. All labouring under a yoke of cuntness.
this is a company that’s had a five year pay freeze on its junior staff, while increasing the pay of its top people by 10% this year
I should make clear that Future’s staff, the people who work for them, are 95% awesome. But the company has a strawberry floated culture.

Is there anywhere you would recommend?
Eurogamer, great people.

Ever had your arm lent on to up or down a score?
Yes

have you witnessed any dodgy deals?
Yes. Future will do anything to accommodate advertisers.

who actually runs future? Are they journalist types? Money types? Videogames types?
Ads dictate most things.

was that gooseberry fool common, or was that a one off? Review scores linked to ads in any way?
Totally

worst games mag/site?
CVG. They deliberately misquote devs, and claim it’s a mistake after the hits

have you ever seen deliberate, calculated twisting of facts in order to get hits? Name and shame!
Yes. CVG. Jaffe.

Probably not the man to ask, but anyway - who/what killed off Nintendo Gamer?
Lee Nutter. Genuine moron.

Did Future think the EDGE forum community was a waste of time?
Yes. Then lost 2/3rds of their traffic! Idiots.

What are the best websites?
Eurogamer is the best IMHO

Who were the dodgiest PRs for doing deals (review scores etc)?
Rockstar, without question.

What’s the hardest commission you’ve ever had.
Writing about bullshit F2P games that advertised eg Allods

game that got most obviously dodgy reviews?
Homefront, less obviously. Most is Driv3rgate

I learned everything I know at Future, surrounded by people smarter and funnier than I am. The company sucks. The people are grade A.
Worth mentioning that after CVG's crass misconduct Future sent around an internal email. But me? The actual freelancer? Who gives a gooseberry fool.

Which of Future's mags you reckon will be next to get the chop ?
PSM3 and XBOX World. No question.

Most loathsome banana split in the games industry/Future?
Hmm. I hate Crossley, obv. The most bent? Damian Butt

Worst game to get a 9/90+ score due to 'pressure'?
Probably LA Noire

Do publishers/platform holders 'pay' for covers? In either ad spend or access.
They control everything

You said Rockstar were dodgy. How, specifically?
Direct intimidation plus massive ad budget. Simple.
Basically, whenever someone at Future tells you they don’t sell scores, they’re lying. I’ve seen it. They do.

Do scores get pushed up, or do publishers with similar games push rivals down?
No, only care about their own

Just give us the worst story on Future you have and get some rest!
Edge gave GTA IV [10] but the review didn’t
Bent as strawberry float. That’s Future for you

are official mags like opm under more pressure? Hence most launch titles used to end up 10/10?
Yep, internal joke

Any info to spill on Cod reviews/ad pressure?
Actually, no. COD always earned the reviews, good series
I’m genuinely amazed that nobody has picked up on the fact that GTA4 got a 9 which became Rockstar’s much sought-after [10] in Edge.

I did wonder about GTA. But you said they left Edge alone? Did R* buy the [10]
Yep. With the Sam H cover

Was the EDGE 6/10 for GTA III really a mistake?
Not my time, but apparently it was genuine - should’ve been 8

If Rockstar was the dodgiest, who else is up there?
2K bitch a lot. EA/Acti are numbers-driven.

any other Edge [10]'s not earn it?
Nope, the rest are kosher. GTAIV was bent
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Re: Rich Stanton reveals Future's dodgy dealings on Twitter
Postby Tineash » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:33 am

Knew that GTAIV was dodgy. 10 my arse!
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Re: Rich Stanton reveals Future's dodgy dealings on Twitter
Postby TheTurnipKing » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:34 am

Hardly surprised. Amiga Power used to complain about Future on an irregular basis.
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Re: Rich Stanton reveals Future's dodgy dealings on Twitter
Postby PCCD » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:36 am

I'll look past all of Future's dodgy dealings if they bring back Ross-On-Why :shifty:
The Holly and Delusi wrote:PENALTY: Blatant lies. Five minutes in the Sin Bin.
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Garth
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Garth » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:56 am

Tidied up the Q&As a bit for easier reading.
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captain red dog
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby captain red dog » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:00 am

GTA IV got a 10? That really surprises me in retrospect, but then I suppose it got the score GTA III should have got.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Alvin Flummux » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:37 am

Will Future, or any of the current staff at the mags implicated, be responding to any of this? Not that they'd be honest if they did respond, mind.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby TheTurnipKing » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:45 am

captain red dog wrote:GTA IV got a 10? That really surprises me in retrospect, but then I suppose it got the score GTA III should have got.

I think it's probably worth the 10. Technologically it's still quite an incredible achivement.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Lotus » Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:39 am

Not surprising really is it. One of those industries where the people with talent do all the work and get strawberry floated over, while the people who control everything to bugger all and pay themselves obscene amounts of money no doubt.

I used to dream of working somewhere like Future, but the older you get the more you realise that in reality (as opposed to my 15 year old teen's view on things) it's not nearly as great as you think it is.

I don't trust any site or magazine really - gamer's opinions are far more valuable.

I still genuinely think we could make a brilliant written section of GRcade BTW. Did that idea just die a slow and drawn out death?
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby TheTurnipKing » Wed Oct 10, 2012 5:36 am

Is there any other kind of industry?

It's practically the definition: Pay one guy at the top the wage of 10 guys to make 10 guys do the work of 100.

Pyramid schemes. Pyramid schemes everywhere.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby speedboatchase » Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:40 am

This crap sickens me but it happens everywhere. I reviewed games and movies at my previous employer and earlier this year Universal Pictures had spent thousands on a promotional package for Contraband that ran for weeks. I reviewed it honestly and gave it a 3/5 and then it was then changed to a 4/5 an hour after going live. I complained to my editor, who agreed that we shouldn't sell reviews (my employer changed the review score of their own volition, although Universal were apparently unhappy with the score).

Having felt that this kind of shenanigans was in the past, I realised that we had a huge problem when after weeks of paid-for content and competitions surrounding American Pie: Reunion, I went to a critics screening and found that the movie was awful. I told my editor who - completely changing his position from earlier - insisted that I was being precious and should reward the movie a great score regardless. As my byline and photo was on every review, I said that I didn't want my name associated with such an article and in the end I had to write a completely false, positive review - albeit with my editor's byline, not mine. Thankfully, I don't work there anymore.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Harry Bizzle » Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:48 am

Not in the least bit surprised that L.A. Noire's scores are all dodgy. The reviews it got are simply ridiculous in comparison to what the game actually is.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Lotus » Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:10 am

TheTurnipKing wrote:Is there any other kind of industry?

It's practically the definition: Pay one guy at the top the wage of 10 guys to make 10 guys do the work of 100.

Pyramid schemes. Pyramid schemes everywhere.

Well, there are exceptions. It just seems particularly palpable in games journalism. The pay is appalling, yet the product is almost solely down to the writers.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Saint of Killers » Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:27 am

:lol: GTA IV got a ten? I love the game and even I know it isn't a 10. Even with the two expansions included it'd only be a 9. IV on its own is a solid 8.

Funny how he really seems to like EuroGamer yet you often hear gooseberry fool about them too (big ads coinciding with big scores).

Shame about Rockstar's behavior though.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Dblock » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:04 am

This guy is clearly angry at Rockstar. He keeps mentioning titles they either made or published. I sense butt hurt Free lancer. GTA4 in my opinion was a 10, it still plays great after 5 years.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Pedz » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:09 am

If GTAIV was a 10, Saints Row 2 was an 11.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Hime » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:20 am

What did this guy do? I find it hard to believe a writer would be privy to top level dodgy dealing.

Anyway if we're questioning GTA IV's 10 surely Halo 3,s must have been bought? That's coming from a Halo fan.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Lotus » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:40 am

His blog says:

I started on Edge magazine, eventually becoming features editor before going freelance about two years ago. Since then I’ve done much work for Eurogamer.net, my fave gaming site, and have been lucky enough to get my nose into places like the Guardian, IGN and PC Gamer.

This place will link to articles I’ve written and host stuff that has no other home.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Corazon de Leon » Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:02 am

Aren't Rockstar a company with notoriously awful working practices though? I remember a story a few years back where devs working on one of their games(possibly GTA IV or one of its expansions) were basically treated inhumanely, forced to work 12+ hour days etc.
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Re: Rich Stanton on Future's dodgy dealings - GTA4's [10] bo
Postby Xeno » Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:09 am

Corazon de Leon wrote:Aren't Rockstar a company with notoriously awful working practices though? I remember a story a few years back where devs working on one of their games(possibly GTA IV or one of its expansions) were basically treated inhumanely, forced to work 12+ hour days etc.


It was LA Noir and it was the dev owner and not Rockstar that was the strawberry float nut, then screwed all his employees after the game was released to top it all off.
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Xeno wrote:Chewing takes effort. What he needs is Emma Watson to chew his food then transfer it to him for him to swallow.

I dont know why, but that sounds strawberry floating incredible.

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