Reviews will be sent to us from the publisher or PR company handling codes within our region. We often get game codes before their release date but we always strictly follow embargo information. Reviewers will be selected based on a range of criteria including their experience with a genre/series. Any reviewer with a close personal or professional connection to a game won’t be permitted to review it. All reviews will be written solely by their appointed reviewer and all reviews will be checked by an editor before being published. The thoughts and scores given in a review are a reflection of the review writer alone.
We expect our writers to spend enough time with a game to understand it intimately and with a lot of detail before publishing their review. For the majority of games, this means the game will be ‘completed’ before the review writing process begins. However, this is not an exact science, and not all games have a traditional ending, so the time that’s required to spend on different games has to come on a case by case basis. We trust and expect our reviewers to make informed judgements about how much time is appropriate to get a solid opinion. Whilst we will strive to hit embargo dates whenever possible, we’d rather delay a review to get a firmer understanding of the title than to rush a review in order to get it up faster.
We will always make an effort to ensure that our reviews are honest and we have taken the care to make sure you understand not just what our opinion is, but why we feel that way as well.
Where Can You Find Checkpoint Reviews?
Our reviews will first be published to checkpointgaming.net/reviews. Those written reviews can also be found on Metacritic and OpenCritic, with whom we are affiliated. All major video game releases, and many minor ones too, will also be reviewed on-air during the weekly Checkpoint radio broadcast which reaches a national Australian audience. Reviewers will be brought into the live radio studio to share their reviews or reviews may be recorded in advance. On occasion, if the written reviewer is not available, an equally suitable and knowledgeable individual will take their place to bring a review to our broadcast audience.
At the start of 2020, we implemented a 10-point review scale system. At the beginning of 2022, we began implementing a 20-point review scale to allow our reviewers the opportunity to more accurately reflect their opinion within the score. Our review scores begin at 1 and end at 10. Our scores will not be influenced by anything other than a reviewer’s thoughts and their enjoyment of a game. You can see a full rundown of our review scores and what they mean below.
10/10 implies that a game is a “Masterpiece”. Very very few games can be considered a masterpiece, otherwise the word loses all meaning. This game is unbelievably good. This game changes the landscape of gaming or defines a generation. It shouldn’t just be polished, but incredibly forward-thinking/meaningful too. It should be next to impossible to fault.
9 or 9.5/10 implies an “Amazing” game. Something truly special. This is the kind of game you’d happily consider as a Game of the Year contender.
8 or 8.5/10 implies a “Great” game. This game certainly isn’t perfect but it’s well worth being celebrated. You’ll remember this game as an entertaining experience well worth your time.
7 or 7.5/10 is a “Good” game. There are quite a lot of good games out there, but being good is by no means a negative. A good game is something you would happily recommend to people. It’s just not quite as good as some other releases.
6 or 6.5/10 is “Decent”. It’s hard to feel passionate about a 6/10 game. Like it’s definitely not a bad game, but it’s hardly a special release, you know? This game does some good things but it isn’t great in other ways too.
5 or 5.5/10 is “Average”. If a friend asked me about a 5/10 game, I’d tell them there’s plenty of other titles out there that are more worthy of their time. Being average doesn’t mean a game is offensively bad, it’s more just a bit bland and otherwise unimportant.
4 or 4.5/10 is “Mediocre”. These games fall below average. Often they’re just quite dull and unimaginative. They do enough things badly that they’re not even worthy of being considered average.
3 or 3.5/10 is “Bad”. Sometimes games are just bad. They don’t have much to say and yet they still find a way to say it badly.
2 or 2.5/10 is “Terrible”. You don’t come across terrible games all that often. These games go beyond uninspired or mediocre. They are downright awful. Perhaps it’s a cheap asset flip on Steam looking to make a quick buck. Perhaps it’s genuinely offensive. You’ll often know a game is terrible pretty quickly after playing it.
1 or 1.5/10 is “Unplayable”. This game is so shoddily made it barely functions for those who attempt to play it.