Critics and video games in libraries

This article is a response to Jean-François Cusson’s excellent post that discusses the best video games for libraries in 2010. In addition to providing a top for each console, Jean-François names the main selection criteria for video games. for free activities in libraries.

In this last list, I would like to add the critical success and innovation in the field of games, two elements that are, for me, just as important when developing a collection of games. As is the case for other media, the library must highlight documents that have undeniable artistic qualities, but are still less popular. In the games mentioned in Jean-François’s list, here is the critical success according to the figures of Metacritics (an aggregator of video game reviews).

Title of the game Metacritics Score
Super Mario Galaxy 2 97
StarCraft 2 93
FIFA Soccer 11 89
NHL 11 88
Dance Central 83
ModNation Racers 82
James Bond Goldeneye 007 81
NBA Jam 79
Sports Champion 76
Naruto Shippuden 76
Kinect Sports 73

To give an idea of ​​the quality of video games, note that in 2010, a hundred games scored 85+ on Metacritics.

It is true that video game collections must meet specific broader needs than critical success, especially in free activities as it is done in Montréal-Nord. On the other hand, in other types of activities, or in video game loan libraries, other games should be further promoted.

We must not forget that video games still have work to do before being recognized in libraries at the same level as other media. That’s why, in my opinion, a game of the year must go beyond the notion of pleasure and advance the vision of games in society beyond the “gadget” and “babel”. They must therefore question the vision of the medium and its possibilities and thus encourage more people to try this fantastic medium.

It is for this reason that I propose you my own game of the year for the libraries in 2010. A game that the non-players or the “casual gamers” will appreciate, because it is an innovative and original approach to the concept history, narrative, interactivity and cinematography.

I make this choice, aware that it is a game for M Mature and a game playing alone (so, difficult to use in free activities). Yet Heavy Rain (87 on Metacritics) helps to change the vision of games in society in an effective and unique way.

I would also like to make a special mention to Super Scribblenauts: the riddles of Maxell (for the Nintendo DS), another very unique (and exceptional) game where the player must solve puzzles by writing the objects he needs. To pass an ice wall, you can write “hot air balloon” to fly over it, “torch” to melt it, etc. The imagination is the only limit of the players! On the other hand, the French translation of the game, launched last autumn, is not yet quite successful, which limits the interest of the game.


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