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Lead Ubisoft Designer Has Youtube Channel Doing Long-Form Critiques of Games

Called Farlands Design Den

I've watched a few of them now to get a feel and they're quite good. Fans of Joseph Anderson and Matthewmatosis should be at home. And just like them, it's gonna be a situation where you might not agree with everything they say, but there's almost always good thought and reasoning behind the critiques/praises that you can at least respect.

He also uses a weighted review scoring system that's quite a bit different to anything I've seen before. There's five categories – Design, Context, Aesthetics(visuals+sound/music), Cohesion and Emotion. And he's quite open about the varying degree of subjectiveness to these things, with 'Emotion' being the sort of full-on, 'just how much I enjoyed it and nothing you can say about it' subjective score, which also is the most heavily weighted portion of the score – something I'm 100% behind as that's what matters most. The end result is something where a really high final score, like 90+ is gonna be extremely hard to achieve, so you shouldn't take this as a typical review score. For instance, he critiques A Link to the Past and has nearly all good things to say about it, but it still only gets an 86 at the end of it. This review scoring system alone is something worth checking out and discussing, in my opinion. I'm usually not a fan of scoring that's based on different categories, as I usually think different games cant all be put in the same boxes due to different priorities, but this one seems to work, assuming you understand it shouldn't be compared with normal reviewer scoring.

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So far, the bigger games he's done are the first three Zelda games, Bioshock and just recently, Assassin's Creed. Yes, a Ubisoft game! But he did not work on it, and he certainly doesn't shill for it whatsoever and goes into all the problems of it in detail. And also, just in case you make the same mistake I did – his Shadows of Mordor critique is NOT the game you're thinking… :p

Anyways, figured this sub would be a good place to recommend him. It's rare to see professional game developers give detailed analysis of games, so a lot of good insight can be found here.


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