Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. It's the sort of game that comes around once every few years and totally changes the gaming landscape.
  2. 100
    Black & White miraculously pulls you in and doesn't let go until you've sacrificed many hours.
  3. If you’d like to keep your friends and job stay clear away from this game, if however you want to get sucked into a game that rarely let’s you leave, then you need to get this game, simple.
  4. One of the most compelling, beautiful and impressive pieces of code we have played in a long, long time. It is also insanely addictive.
  5. Believe the hype. The new Best Game Ever just rode into town, and it's going to be sticking around for a long time.
  6. Highly conceptual "god-game" that has you ruling over mortals with a little help from a giant cow-monster. [Feb 2003, p.94]
  7. Over the past 12 months, I have played some of the best games ever made and playing Black & White is just pure icing on the cake.
  8. 97
    A truly miraculous "game." I call it a "game" because it's more of an experience.
  9. Quite simply the most ingenious, addictive and meticulously-crafted and executed computer game of the year thus far.
  10. With excellent online play, top-notch graphics, and a musical score that you'll find yourself just listening to, Black and White is a quality game all around.
  11. To play this is to love it - there is so much to do, so much to learn and so much enjoyment to be had from this that I cannot see anyone failing to like it.
  12. One of the most innovative, creative, original, and awe-inspiring PC games ever. [June 2001, p.52]
  13. Plain and simple, Black and White is the most engrossing game I've seen in a while.
  14. It has an innovative style, quality design and some elements that have never before been seen in gaming, like the alignment system. It's easily one of the most entertaining games I've played in a long time.
  15. The scope of Black & White is so far in excess of a typical game design that it seems surprising that the finished product turned out so polished and so playable.
  16. 91
    One of the most unique -- and enjoyable -- strategy games we've seen this year.
  17. I strangely feel a very strong maternal instinct towards my monkey (don't tell my children). I find myself telling him out loud what a good boy he is while rubbing his belly or explaining why I have to spank him.
  18. 90
    It's not the all-encompassing experience of godly power that was suggested. You have to play it in a fairly rigid and organised fashion.
  19. Black & White is one of the games you will remember 10 years from now as a turning curve for PC gaming. Thank you Peter Molyneux and Lionhead Studios, this game has certainly been something fresh and new.
  20. A heavenly refreshing virtual toy in which to lose oneself for hours on end.
  21. An incredible game that features great AI, music, graphics and story.
  22. Mixing elements of empire building, resource management, life simulation, survival and brawling with complex strategies and tactics in a gorgeous fantasy setting seems too good to be true.
  23. The musical score is monumental in a sense and it reminds me of that theme song in "Gladiator" - the one which plays during that scene when Maximus is walking through a crop field near his home.
  24. Ground-breaking and very fascinating, but the game is hurt by an overemphasis on micromanagement. Improved village management and some poor level design kept this game from rating higher.
  25. After about 15-25 hours (Depending on the gamer) the game just seems to lose it’s fun factor. Sadly, many games released nowadays don’t even have 15 hours gameplay in them, let alone 15 hours of damn fun gameplay; Black and White does indeed have this.
  26. 85
    While the game is far from perfect -- some may bristle at the constant micromanagement and the often ambiguous objectives you are required to meet -- it is very approachable and addictive, an almost ideal virtual playground in which you can play god.
  27. Think of this as a cake-baking contest, and Lionhead showed up with a cake mix still in the box. The final quality depends on how you mix it, bake it, and frost it.
  28. Parts are a bit problematic, such as the combat, challenges, and village management, but most of what you experience is endlessly fascinating.
  29. Though the plodding pace and cutesy atmosphere border on blasphemy, the game’s open-ended design lets you indulge your most megalomaniacal fantasies with ease.
  30. It has a great concept, great innovations, but they should have spent more time refining the gameplay to be more rewarding. City building, fighting, and creature training are all too shallow.
  31. I stand in awe of the vastness of its scope and the inventiveness of its design. However, it takes forever to learn, and one can't help getting frustrated along the way.
  32. It's a brilliant toy but also a jumbled mishmash of original ideas and mundane gameplay that fails to deliver a cohesive single- or multiplayer experience.
  33. Once I made it past that initial stage of astonishment, I made an unfortunate discovery: the single-player game, as designed, just isn't much fun in the long term.
User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 240 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 40
  2. Negative: 6 out of 40
  1. NicholasS.
    Feb 23, 2002
    10
    Totally awesome.
  2. JonK.
    Oct 18, 2003
    6
    How did this score so highly? No, no, no!! I await Black & White 2 eagerly, but sadly the original was fatally flawed. It takes what is How did this score so highly? No, no, no!! I await Black & White 2 eagerly, but sadly the original was fatally flawed. It takes what is essentially a sandbox environment where you look after your creature and your worshippers, and restricts it with a rigid structure that's repetitive, dull, frustrating and badly paced. Plus, it's near impossible to play again because of the very lengthy tutorial you're forced to sit through... Full Review »
  3. Sep 5, 2012
    10
    I don`t understand all the negative reviews on this game. For me is the single most brilliant game ever made, too bad it doesn't have a sequelI don`t understand all the negative reviews on this game. For me is the single most brilliant game ever made, too bad it doesn't have a sequel to follow it's steps. From graphics to gameplay to story, this is the game that filled my early years in gaming with hope that the game industry will grow in intelligence and innovation. I was wrong, but still this game deserves to be in top 10 ever made. It saddens me that so many ppl view it as junk.
    One of the best. 10/10
    Full Review »