Electronic Gaming Monthly's Scores

  • Games
For 2,307 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 31% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 65% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 68
Highest review score: 100 The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Lowest review score: 5 Ping Pals
Score distribution:
2,307 game reviews
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    An epic adventure that is among the best N64 games. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    GTA4 is a traditional crime story through and through, with a script that rarely strays from its purpose, a pitch-perfect supporting cast, and an expert combination of in-game storytelling and crafted cut-scenes. [June 2008, p.80]
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    GTA4 is a traditional crime story through and through, with a script that rarely strays from its purpose, a pitch-perfect supporting cast, and an expert combination of in-game storytelling and crafted cut-scenes. [June 2008, p.80]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    Where series like "Zelda" are starting to stagnate, Mario continues to innovate and impress. [Jan 2008, p.84]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Neversoft must have made a deal with the devil, because this series refuses to cool down. [Dec 2001, p.246]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    If "GoldenEye" is a bull's-eye, Perfect Dark hits somewhere in the lungs. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The visuals are untouchable, the gameplay is tight, and the mood is hauntingly captivating. It is simply mind-blowing on so many different levels. [Jan 2003, p.184]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    GTA3 gives you the freedom to do enough to fill 10 games. [Jan 2002, p.206]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This game has me totally mesmerized…[It] engages your intellect on a whole different level. [Jan 2002, p.224]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is a beautiful-looking game. This is a beautiful-sounding game. And this is a beautifully designed game with a story and atmosphere that sticks with you long after you've emerged. [Oct 2007, p.96]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    Truly classic, late '90s college dorm room staple, and Rare's finest moment. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    I don't care how sky-high your expectations are, RE4 will blow them away again and again. 2005's Game of the Year might have come out just 11 days into it. [March 2005, p.130]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    The Orange Box is the greatest quantity of quality gaming ever...Even at $60, this box is value-priced to the point of philanthropy. [Dec 2007, p.124]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    The spectacular sequel that confirmed the hatred gamers felt for Paul. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    From 30-foot-tall bosses down to the tiny embroidery on Ada's dress, the overall design and attention to detail is among the best in any game. Which really could be said for almost every aspect of RE4-don't miss this game.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    "[Expletive], the animation is incredible!" (Mark)... Wind Waker's core gameplay is the best the series has ever had. (Shane)... The world is so perfectly realized that everything just fits. (Gregg) [Apr 2003, p.122]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The first installment in the best racing-game series of all time. [Jan 2004, p.188]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It’s infinitely more polished, more playable, more replayable, better-looking, and just plain fun to run around and play than most anything else out there. [Jan 2002, p.212]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Holy f***ing s***. (Sorry...I'm swearing a lot more now because of San Andreas.) I can't wrap my head around how much stuff is packed into this one disc. It's grand, it's ambitious, and funny as this may sound, it's legendary. [Dan Hsu]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    As big as "GTA3" is, Vice City dwarfs it in almost every way. (Greg) ... The graphical improvements are subtle but effective. (Che) ... An instant classic. (Milkman)[Dec 2002, p.204]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Yes, it's the most charming game I've ever played, and it's one of the most enjoyable. [Dec 2008, p.72]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This game has taken over my entire life. [Sept 2001, p.142]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    From the huge gameplay twist early on, to taking down a giant walking tank, to way late in the game when you team up with certain...teammates, all the way to an end that'll leave you with the same breathless feeling you had when you first watched "The Empire Strikes Back"...moments like these turn a fun game into a monumental experience.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    "Four Swords" is the most fun I've ever had with a four-player GBA game. [Jan 2003, p.212]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Link's second N64 adventure is a little different, but that's why we love it. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Twilight Princess is a rarity: a game that spans 60 hours and never once feels boring. Between the immaculate gameplay, the devious puzzles, and the gripping story, it's simply the best Zelda ever. And that's saying a lot. [Jan 2007, p.56]
    • 95 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Madden's gameplay amazes, but it's EA's delivery that throws the knockout punch. [Sept 2002, p.148]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    Yet another outstanding FF sequel, this time with a return to its roots. [Jan 2004, p.188]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The game's goals are so diverse, you can't help but come back for more, if only to see what outrageous challenges await you next. [Dec 2002, p.226]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Crazy-wack dialogue aside, DMC is absolutely electrifying. Savor every hardcore bite. [Dec 2001, p.240]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Add to that the experience and reward system, 16 maps out of the box, and the party system, and COD4 delivers a knockout one-two single and multiplayer shooter punch. [Holiday 2007, p.71]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Once you get past gameplay which is deeper than a black hole, you’ll find an endless list of options and features. [Oct 2001, p.146]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    The Playmaker Control feature...gives you an unprecedented amount of control, so you actually feel like you're commanding the whole team, not just the QB. [Sept 2003, p.124]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    I should absolutely hate Gears of War. Tactical combat, a big emphasis on using cover, one-death-and-your-done multiplayer--all three have always been on my list of gaming pet peeves. But ironically, these aspects make up much of the reason why I absolutely love it. [Jan. 2007, p.92]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Many of you will absolutely detest (like, controller-smash detest) Oblivion. This mega-titanium-diamond-hardcore game punishes even the passionate...Oblivion makes you do hard time--and you love it. That's amazing.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Add to that the experience and reward system, 16 maps out of the box, and the party system, and COD4 delivers a knockout one-two single and multiplayer shooter punch. [Holiday 2007, p.71]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    Sure, no one aspect of the game is life-changing on its own, but perhaps the package as a whole is. [Dec 2007, p.116]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Perfect controls. Perfectly constructed stages. Perfect graphics (for an old, trippy 2D game, that is). [Nov 2003, p.200]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It's simply brilliant. The modes, graphics, gameplay, sound, music, acting, dialogue, and every other little piece in between all come together to create a tense, sweaty-palm experience you can't find anywhere else. [Apr 2005, p.126]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    The speed is staggering, and the smashes spectacular...Burnout 3 blows the doors off its predecessors with bliteringly fast online play, a massive single-player mode lousy with unlockables, and all the right gameplay tweaks. [Oct 2004, p.100]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    Subsistence's awe-inspiring single-player adventure outclasses every other stealth game in existence, including the previous MGS titles. It's the perfect blend of gripping narrative, nuanced gameplay, astonishing (nearly next-gen) graphics, and creative boss battles. [Apr. 2006, p.98]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    But most importantly, it feels like an overhaul without losing the fun details and epic feel that have always made the series work. [Aug 2008, p.74]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    One helluva college football experience... The gameplay isn't quite as confining as "Madden's", allowing for more open-ended games. [Aug 2003, p.118]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    God of War's control and combo scheme is as much a work of art as the game's presentation, which rivals a Hollywood sand-and-sandals epic. And you rarely find puzzles this clever and well integrated in other hack-n-slash adventures.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    KOTOR is like the movie we all hoped "Episode I" would be - enthralling plot, marvelous visuals and voice acting, deep immersion in the galaxy's many worlds, with all that noble Jedi malarkey lightened up by old-school "Episode 4"-style humor. [Sept 2003, p.118]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    A meticulously balanced fighter's fighter – no cyborgs or polar bears or laser beams. It's simplicity perfected, and you'd be surprised how complex that can get. [May 2002, p.110]
    • 94 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    There'll never be another Mario game that will make the same impact as Super Mario 64. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    The speed is staggering, and the smashes spectacular...Burnout 3 blows the doors off its predecessors with bliteringly fast online play, a massive single-player mode lousy with unlockables, and all the right gameplay tweaks. [Oct 2004, p.100]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    That said, Brawl still shines as the go-to party game for a houseful of friends. [May 2008, p.70]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    Even more wow is the multiplayer game. Folks, this is the reason to get on Xbox Live. I don't care about the money for the subscription, for broadband, and for the cable dude to come out to your pad-you gotta play four-player Pandora.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Great controls. Solid game design...Tony 3 has more personality, movies and creative stages than you know what to do with. [Apr 2002, p.146]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    That the game manages to both come to a satisfying conclusion and still make it clear that Kratos' adventure is far from over is quite a feat and a lesson that other action-game developers could learn something from. [Apr 2007, p.90]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    I love this game, but I've eaten enough snow to have some gripes. It's too difficult to catch rails—miscalculate ever so slightly, and you'll wipe out hard, killing any combo and losing tons of turbo.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A graphical powerhouse... My only gripe: Some levels are outrageously difficult. [Jan 2003, p.206]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    Okami developer Clover obviously put a lot of love into its creation and, as you travel the countryside, painting barren landscapes into bloom, that love radiates from the screen. [Sept. 2006, p.100]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is simply one of the finest, most beautiful, PC-style RPGs you can get. [May 2007, p.82]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    Still, it's the kind of hugely ambitious game that doesn't come around very often. [Dec 2008, p.69]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Tearing into Gears 2 is a treat--this blood-soaked sequel offers a smorgasbord of sadistically entertaining content. [Dec 2008, p.78]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Between the vastly improved Franchise mode and the peppy online play , there's no reason why football fans shouldn't be playing this for the next 364 freakin' days. [Oct 2002, p.184]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A staggering sports sim worthy of praise, with spectacular graphics, depth, and gameplay. [Apr 2003, p.116]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    A hardcore gamer's fantasy game come true. With Eight-Way Run, Air Control, Guard Impacts, and all these other techniques in your holster, you can spend weeks training with just one character. [Sept 2003, p.103]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Combines the best of the first two games. [Oct 2001, p.156]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Joe's style is his substance. His story may amount to so much fluff, but the flimsy plot is only pretense for the near-perfect gameplay you'll find in this comic book come to life. [Nov 2003, p.192]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    This is exactly what I'm looking for in a 32-bit Castlevania game: great graphics and animation, plenty of way-cool Bosses and tight 2D gameplay.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Like its title suggests, Evo takes Sega's staggering chop-socky PS2 masterpiece and fine-tunes it to near perfection... But the real reason to plunk down 20 bucks is for Evo's superb Quest mode. [Sept 2003, p.115]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    But the move to Xbox feels like more of a formality-you don't really notice the slightly nicer environments, and if ever a game didn't need custom soundtracks, this is the one.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    As good as it gets. The "FIFA" series may have a bit more flash, but Eleven is top of the table when it comes to gameplay - and that's all that counts with soccer. [March 2004, p.118]
    • 93 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The best-looking (you heard me, Live), best-playing game of basketball you’ll find. [Jan 2002, p.231]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    A hardcore gamer's fantasy game come true. With Eight-Way Run, Air Control, Guard Impacts, and all these other techniques in your holster, you can spend weeks training with just one character. [Sept 2003, p.103]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Pure magic. Soft lighting effects and elaborate, detailed architecture give the entire experience the quality of an opium-induced vision where time moves at the speed of your imagination. PoP's immersive atmosphere takes you to another level altogether. [Dec 2003, p.186]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Nearly every gameplay element seems finely tuned. [Dec 2001, p.244]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    Even though Tricky isn’t completely fresh, it’s substantial enough to squash any challengers out there. [Jan 2002, p.222]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Pure magic. Soft lighting effects and elaborate, detailed architecture give the entire experience the quality of an opium-induced vision where time moves at the speed of your imagination. PoP's immersive atmosphere takes you to another level altogether. [Dec 2003, p.186]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    "Guitar Hero" is still the way to go for lone wolves, but if you have the space, the manpower, and the means($170), Rock Band unquestionably, unequivocally rocks. [Jan 2008, p.92]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 82 Critic Score
    I can look past your repetitive combat, formulaic structure and sometimes misleading game design. It's your stylish presentation, puzzles and ability to mess with a guy's head that's gonna make me own you. Literally. [Sept 2002, p.161]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The difficulty curve is perfect. Can't win a particular race? No problem. Take a practice run to look for shortcuts or shell out some prize money to upgrade your character, and you'll be right back on the road to snowboarding superstardom.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    Rare's homage to "Mario 64," only it's not quite as good. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 98 Critic Score
    Forza's handling is impeccable. Many car sims have done an adequate job of providing an impression of the forces exerted on a car as it hurtles around a track, but in Forza it's as though you can feel the exact point where your tires lose traction.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    A strategy role-playing game where the timing and placement of attacks means everything. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 73 Critic Score
    I never had so much fun NOT playing a game. You see, whether you share one GBA or link several up, you don't get to do anything when it's not your turn. [Oct 2001, p.156]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    From its lively outdoor backdrops to the striking architecture found in its cities and dungeons, this PS2 title will even please--at least visually--those with next-gen FF firmly on the brain. [Nov. 2006, p.126]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's still one of the best platformers ever, now perfectly ported to GBA...a true classic. [Mar 2002, p.145]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 83 Critic Score
    ESPN's franchise mode is much improved, but I'm not entirely sold in its biggest addition, Weekly Prep, either. [Sept 2004, p.94]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Suffice it to say, if the first game made you happy, this jam-packed sequel will make you crap your pants with glee. [Feb 2002, p.160]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    100 percent pure, unadulterated fun. The moment you start playing, everything just clicks - the same way it did with "Mario 64" - and you immediately know you're in for a hell of a ride. [Oct 2002, p.198]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 84 Critic Score
    The spirit of skateboarding in game form. Truly amazing. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The difficulty curve is perfect. Can't win a particular race? No problem. Take a practice run to look for shortcuts or shell out some prize money to upgrade your character, and you'll be right back on the road to snowboarding superstardom.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 97 Critic Score
    A hardcore gamer's fantasy game come true. With Eight-Way Run, Air Control, Guard Impacts, and all these other techniques in your holster, you can spend weeks training with just one character. [Sept 2003, p.103]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    All those glorious graphics are just gravy, as the lovable characters and compelling story provide the true heart of FFX. [Feb 2002, p.150]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    Pure magic. Soft lighting effects and elaborate, detailed architecture give the entire experience the quality of an opium-induced vision where time moves at the speed of your imagination. PoP's immersive atmosphere takes you to another level altogether. [Dec 2003, p.186]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Aside from the bitchin' new modes, Guitar Hero II is essentially the same game with new songs. [Dec. 2006, p.134]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Simply amazing, and even better than the Japanese version. They balanced out the fights and added a couple of Bosses and some extra footage to the game.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    "Guitar Hero" is still the way to go for lone wolves, but if you have the space, the manpower, and the means($170), Rock Band unquestionably, unequivocally rocks. [Jan 2008, p.92]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 83 Critic Score
    Great! Now even dorky white gamers think they can rap. [Jan 2004, p.188]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 85 Critic Score
    "We're mature!" No, you're not. You're just a fun action/shooter/junior-high simulator. [Jan 2004, p.189]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 94 Critic Score
    And once the music ended, it was pretty clear: Rock Band 2 is another chart-topper. [Nov 2008, p.79]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 93 Critic Score
    If anything is a disappointment, it's the all-new multiplayer mode; the game's lock-on targeting just doesn't lend itself very well to a four-player fragfest, and the options are severely limited. So why am I still giving Echoes such a high score?...The main game is that damn good. [Holiday 2004, p.136]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    As expected, the control is perfect. Samus' myriad movies activate with precision and ease - all games should feel this good. [Jan 2003, p.214]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 92 Critic Score
    [Chris]: Madden just plays better than "ESPN." There. I said it. [Bryan]: No, Chris - It plays a LOT better. And and I'm not just talking about the improved defensive play (especially in the secondary) and, with a quick tap on the new Hit Stick, the bone-jarring tackles. It's how Madden replicates the style of play of actual NFL squads. [Sept 2004, p.94]
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Even with these changes and enhanced running game, ESPN NFL Football remains second-string behind "Madden"; its franchise options don't stack up to Johnny boy's title. [Sept 2003, p.125]