Variety's Scores

For 64 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 32% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 65% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 10.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Game review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Lowest review score: 10 Hail to the Chimp
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 64
  2. Negative: 17 out of 64
64 game reviews
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Stunningly beautiful and morally harrowing, but plodding in its execution.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A mix that often impresses but rarely surprises. More gory than frightening, more technically adept than substantive, "Dead Space" will find a healthy crossover aud between gamers and horror fans, but won't leave them with a single new idea to ponder besides the release date of the inevitable sequel.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    True Aerosmith fans will be turned off that the game so often strays from the band's career, and "Guitar Hero" purists will bemoan the lack of difficulty, which could lead to some disgruntled buyers for what's essentially an overpriced expansion pack.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    Surprisingly fun and competent, though far from the shot of adrenaline the franchise needs to return to its former glory.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    Mixing Japanese and more traditional, Western-style horror elements to eerie effect, Siren: Blood Curse delivers on its core promise to freak players out. But Sony's decision to deliver this game as a series of downloadable episodes is a frustrating head-scratcher, as the process of installing each of the 12 episodes on a Playstation 3 in two hour chunks -- even longer than it takes to play them -- is its own terror.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    It is not a masterpiece, although decent in comparison with the games in the market. The story is powerful, although some flaws both in gameplay and camera control make it just a good try to enjoy.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    Developer High Moon Studios did a phenomenal job capturing the look and feel of the "Bourne" books and movies -- everything from the fighting moves to the camera work to the overall mood. But too many of the best moments are almost entirely out of players' control in this heavily scripted and disappointingly unresponsive game.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The impressive graphics, compelling mutiplayer and even the basic gunplay in World at War are all iterations of "CoD 4," minus that game's character, urgency and relevance. The result is a forgettable, mostly middling shooter that will sell decently, but fall far short of "Modern Warfare's" boffo 10 million-plus units.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    There are enough improvements here to please existing Spider-Man vidgame fans, but a shaky story and poorly implemented moral choice system -- and the lack of a new movie -- could leave it hanging by a thread in a crowded market.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 55 Critic Score
    Target kiddie audience will enjoy mixing-and-matching characters in ways never seen onscreen, as well as creating their own East High Wildcat, but will quickly get frustrated with the game's core "dancing" mechanic that's really just flailing with the Wii's wireless controller.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 55 Critic Score
    Though it will quickly bore vocalists acclimated to the challenge of "Rock Band," Lips excels as home karaoke, bringing style and pizzazz to a crowded genre. However, "Lips" is also exceedingly shallow.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Fracture is a feature in search of a videogame. LucasFilm division LucasArts’ latest attempt to establish a new intellectual property beyond Star Wars and Indiana Jones takes one compelling innovation -- weapons that can raise or lower the terrain -- and plugs it into a standard "Halo-esque" sci-fi shooter with no other original ideas.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It's a decent action game, but doesn't remotely capture the spirit of its source material. Moreover, it falls well short of the year's best shooters, meaning it's unlikely to shake many gamers or stir 007 fans.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Rather than match the freedom in the gameplay, however, Spore forces players to use their creations in a series of levels that are derivative and dull.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    To be fair, there isn’t a word yet for “post-ultimate” destruction, but the lack of a subtitle is appropriate for this flimsier and less ambitious game that’s unlikely to set off a rampage to videogame stores.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It's the closest a videogame has come to giving players mastery of the ultimate sci-fi weapon, though the controls are so simple, and the story and multiplayer options so lacking, that it will likely appeal only to the same young boys as the film, which hits homevideo this week.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Though it brings gusto, wit and a sharp eye for horror cliches, Legendary is still at its core a clunky, mediocre first-person shooter that’s likely to vanish under the mountain of topnotch actioners shipping this month.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 45 Critic Score
    A distressingly shallow videogame in which there's nothing for players to do but beat the living crap out of everyone they see.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 45 Critic Score
    The thrill of the chase loses all its appeal in Electronic Arts' Parkour-inspired Mirror's Edge. Repetitive, difficult and visually dull, the game is undone by its use of a highly constrained first person viewpoint in a world of high-speed running and jumping where perspective is everything.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 45 Critic Score
    Shrinking Guitar Hero onto the handheld DS system is an impressive achievement but doesn’t make for a particularly compelling game.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Storyless, arduous and tedious, it’s essentially a mediocre minigame collection that offers too little context for older fans and too many repetitive challenges for kids.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    While it is a good way for individuals to learn different musical styles, Wii Music lacks the simplicity and vicarious thrills of "Guitar Hero" and "Rock Band," and likely won't attract nearly as many groupies.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Rock Revolution is overly complex where it should be simple and soulless where it should be rich. This revolution has little chance of overthrowing the genre's kings.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Hellboy may look better than ever clutching his Samaritan revolver, but Aussie developer Krome Studios’ riff on Mike Mignola’s comic series about a crime-sleuthing demon with a wrecking ball for a right hook feels like a couple of strung-together demo levels instead of a cohesive videogame.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 35 Critic Score
    This confused goulash of driving challenges, old-school puzzles, zombie battles, some late-game tomb-raidering and even a bit of “Grand Theft Auto” in the park fails at pretty much everything it tries to do.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    A disappointingly substandard role-playing game buried under the debris of a thousand forgettable robots slain in a hundred vacant hallways by one man in a silly outfit. After an initial burst of curiosity, this repetitive, derivative and ultimately ridiculous game will be remembered primarily for how little resulted from so much work.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    A humorous ensemble film about self-discovery turns into an unoriginal two-character action game with nothing to say in Bolt, Disney's competent but uninspired adaptation of the new toon. All but erased are the film's comedy, its best supporting characters -- and even the titular canine's ability to talk.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    A beloved fantasy franchise loses its most distinctive quality -- the epic scope of its battles, backdrops, characters and themes -- in Electronic Arts misguided and poorly executed Lord of the Rings: Conquest. The game boils down each of the trilogy's great battles to a series of compact, generic missions that rarely resemble anything seen in Middle Earth.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 25 Critic Score
    Though it sharply replicates the film's look and sounds, the Wall-E game has none of the movie's romantic spirit as it sends the lead robot and his gal pal Eve on a set of uninspired missions pulled out of the videogame cliches handbook.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 25 Critic Score
    It's a fine idea, but in practice, Ultimate Band is a convoluted, inconsistent and inauthentic experience that emulates a phony lip-synching boy band more than a real rock experience.