A few of us were discussing this in the author forum and thought the thread should be remade out here too. During IFComp this place is a big hub for reviewing activity, but as the months pass, the threads slide down and get buried. People don’t read them as much later on unless they’re linked directly. However, IFDB remains a centralized hub all year long, with every review right on each page if anyone’s searching for information about a game.
So we were talking about whether it’s worthwhile to cross-post reviews onto IFDB. Some reviewers have already done that, and I personally think it’s a good idea. Other reviewers may not want to for various reasons (this year my own private reviews were a little too shabby for me to repost, for instance), which I think is understandable as well. But I know other authors are going to migrate their reviews, and some already have.
I think that for games like 500 Apocalypses, Inside the Facility, Ventilator, A Time of Tungsten, etc., it’s especially beneficial to have more reviews on IFDB. Since these were more controversial entries, their pages are more likely to be skewed when there’s only a small number of IFDB contributors.
If you are thinking about cross-posting and you’re on the fence, this thread is basically here to say: Please go for it!
Seconded! I love to read reviews at IFDB. I also agree that copying a review from the context of a forum thread to the context of a game page will often not really be appropriate, and that rewriting/reframing reviews is probably a pain, but I encourage people to at least do that for the handful of games where you felt you had something interesting to say about them.
I also encourage people (not just reviewers!) to add external links from IFDB to reviews that have been posted on blogs as standalone pages (the Breakfast reviews, for instance). Earlier this year I went through the SpringThing entries on IFDB and added links to the external reviews that I could find, and if I get the time/energy I’d like do to the same for IFComp entries, but obviously there’s a lot more (and a lot more reviews) than for SpringThing so it’d be awesome if multiple people pitched in.
Finally, to all those who voted in IFComp, I encourage you to also rate the games you played on IFDB. Which is not to say that your IFDB rating of a game should necessarily be the same as your vote-- personally I grade on a curve so as to “use all the numbers” as suggested in the IFComp judging guidelines, plus I also might change my opinion of a game after playing more than the comp judging time limit of two hours. But I think the ratings function on IFDB is only useful if there are enough total ratings to overcome the idiosyncracies of a small handful of raters. (I think even just checking the “I have played this game” box is a useful bit of information to add.)
Oh definitely, even just a rating or a check in the “I played this” box helps to fill out IFDB’s system too! I second your seconding.
Speaking of the Breakfast Reviews, I actually think I’ll go ahead and link them to IFDB now. Since they cover the whole field it’ll be easy to go down the list and slot them into the pages.
As a… you might say “casual”, you might say “outsider”… as someone who hasn’t played a lot of IF and doesn’t get around too much in this community, it’d definitely be helpful for those like me if there were more reviews and ratings on IFDB; that’s kind of a central page I can go to for information about a game, so it’s helpful for me to be able to see on there what kind of reception a game has had and for what reasons.
Yes please to more reviews on IFDB. Negative but thoughtful reviews are always interesting & welcome, so don’t be shy!
Maybe one thing that might be less work for reviewers is using the “Editorial Reviews” section? I just added Sam Ashwell’s review of “Terminator” to its IFDb page* to test it out, and it was pretty smooth. You edit the page, go to the Off-site reviews section, and click “Add” and then “edit”; this gives you a pop-up where you can fill in the URL of your review, a rating, a brief summary, and so on. That way you don’t have to duplicate your review in two different sites, but it still has a presence on IFDb.
*Hope that’s OK, Sam. In this case since you had an “Overall” section and a rating out of 5 I figured it was OK just to transfer them directly over to the appropriate fields.
That’s another possibility. I do think posting the full reviews on IFDB is preferable, though, because it seems that people are less likely to click offsite to read an editorial review. When the reviews are on the game’s actual page, everything is centralized.
I also personally feel a little weird about linking to forum threads as editorial reviews, which is why I cross-post my own, but I know other people won’t care as much about that. The important thing is keeping them visible in later months/years for new players who might want to research a game after the comp.
I agree it’s really cool to see a cross-posted review whether it’s in the Editorials section or elsewhere. I think it might be better in Editorials if the author decides to modify their review for whatever reason.
I’m all for adding to IFDB in any way possible but sadly I’m a bit lazy about contributing to the effort.