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THQ calls Red Faction: Battlegrounds reception a 'disappointment'


During an event today promoting SyFy's Red Faction: Origins tie-in movie, THQ's creative / biz dev director Lenny Brown shared with Joystiq his thoughts on the reception of the recent download-only release in the franchise, Red Faction: Battlegrounds. "I think it's a little bit of a disappointment," he told us bluntly, with the bulk of that letdown caused by the game's Metacritic score, currently sitting at 49 out of 100.

"I think what's most disappointing for me," Brown said, "is how sometimes the prose of the reviews don't match the final score. Someone will say something not necessarily glowing, but you think you're tracking along a 7, and then you get a 4." Our own review gave the game two out of five stars.

"That's not talking about the fairness of the score of this game in particular," he clarified. "It's not the best game in the world, but it's not a 5. It's a satisfactory experience that leads into the bigger game. And I think just because of what we're trying to do, that's innovative, and I think that alone deserves a 7."

Brown also said that, from his perspective as someone originally from the film industry, a review score carrying such commercial weight is something that's singular to the business of video games. "I think what's really disappointing is that coming from the film business, Metacritic has no bearing -- Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes, they don't really affect studio prices or gross at the box office. It really affects [the video game] industry in a weird way."

While he wasn't able to share sales information, Brown said that he believes part of the problem was that the company didn't do a great job of conveying what it intended Battlegrounds to be. "When you have five minutes for an instance-based gameplay session, that's [Battlegrounds]. And when you want to spend two hours in the Red Faction universe, that's [the larger games] on the console. I think we've got to do a better job of messaging that, to the consumer and to the game press."

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