EA Sports boss Peter Moore has revealed that he doesn't consider Metacritic ratings to be a relevant indication of quality or potential sales for Wii games.
Although Metacritic is widely studied and linked to game sales by publishing execuitves, Moore told Gamasutra that he'd found that Wii titles could sell multiple millions with Metacritic ratings in the low 70s, or none at all. Instead, he's circumventing review sites and looking at direct consumer feedback.
"I absolutely guarantee you, the thing we're watching most closely now is things like Amazon - and I'll go look at women's magazines that have powerful websites, and then we look at what we call 'mommy bloggers'," he says.
"That's where those people go for their information. They are not going to Metacritic. They don't know Metacritic exists."
He referenced the stellar launch of EA Sports Active despite disinterest from games review sites, and delivered a gentle slap to reviewers for failing to prioritise Wii releases.
"The thing is with the Wii, it seems to be for the gaming sites, it's the last platform they review," said Moore.
"It takes a time to get an actual review score. I would pretty much guarantee that just about every Wii game ships without a Metacritic rating because [reviewers] haven't got around to it or they're not interested in reviewing it."
If Wii games can sell independently of poor or late reviews, Moore feels, the company needs to change its emphasis. "So what truly is the value of a review on a Wii game? Now, yes, you still want to get the best possible review score you can get but I think it's less critical to the success of a game on the Wii than it maybe is on Xbox360 or PS3."
That's us told.