TrueTrophies reviews and ethics statement

By Kes Eylers-Stephenson,
TrueTrophies reviews video games and provides news coverage and opinions on video games and the industry at large. As such, here is our ethical statement as it pertains to our content and our reviews.

The TrueTrophies news team abides by a specific ethical code when writing any content for the site — from news to reviews, opinion to guide. Thus, we ensure our content abides by our ethics and reviews statement.

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Ethical Pricipals

Here are the five key items pertaining to our general coverage. This includes news, reviews, opinion pieces, sales stories, and any other piece posted on TrueTrophies.

News Credit

As a community site, we value the members of our community who suggest news items to the news team. As such, we will always give credit where credit is due. If a story is suggested to our team before it is in the process of writing, we will attach credit. If multiple members of our community suggest the same story before it is being written, a community credit will be added to the story at the bottom of the news post. Credit will not be added if a story is suggested while it is in the process of being written by a member of the news team.

Sourcing

Whenever working with original news coverage from another site, TrueTrophies will cite any used source in the body of the news story. We will not link official press releases due to publisher, developer and/or public relations' firm stipulations.

Advertising

Advertising revenue is the main source of revenue for the site and other TrueGaming Network sites. We do not accept money from advertisers or sponsors in exchange for preferential treatment in reviews. If any content is sponsored, it will be clearly labelled as such. All reviews are written and published at the behest of the news team, not by public relations outlets, developers, and/or publishers.

Contests and Giveaways

From time to time, TrueTrophies will host contests and giveaways for games and gaming-related items. Rules and regulations will always be posted in the details of each giveaway and giveaway items are not to be considered an endorsement from TrueTrophies.

Professionalism

The TrueTrophies' staff will always act professionally when interacting with members of the industry, games media, and public. If you feel like any member of the team has conducted themselves otherwise, please contact Editor Kes or a member of the community moderation team.

Review Content

On TrueTrophies we review the biggest games of any given year. TrueTrophies reviews are always written and edited with a central focus on the fair critical treatment of any given product. So, we abide by specific rules in our approach to this content as well as our own set of reviewing guidelines. No external factors or figures will ever influence what we cover, how we cover it, or what scores are awarded. Integrity is incredibly important to us.

Review Copies

TrueTrophies occasionally receives complimentary advanced copies of games from a developer, publisher, or public relations firm. We do not accept copies with pre-conditions as it pertains to review score, site placement, or other preferential treatment. When agreeing to receive pre-release materials, we may agree to an embargo set by the developer, publisher, or public relations firm.

Review Scores

TrueTrophies staff do not discuss/disclose review scores with publishers, developers, and/or public relations firms prior to posting for the public. Every review published on TrueTrophies will include a statement on how long the reviewer spent with a title, the platform played on, how many trophies were gained, and whether the copy was provided by a publisher, developer, public relations firm, or if it was purchased by the reviewer.

The official site reviews use an out of ten integers. User reviews and aggregated community scores use the five-star grading system to help differentiate from site reviews. This is our breakdown of what each number, from 1 to 10, represents in an official review score. We encourage readers to take the time to actually read through a review before taking to the comments.

10 — A genre-defining release. A 10/10 score does not suggest perfection, but a title that is the pinnacle of what gaming can offer.
9 — An amazing experience. There are maybe a few minor foibles keeping it from the top of the pile.
8 — A great game. It might still have some issues or more limited appeal when compared to those that score higher.
7 — A very good game. A solid effort likely to find favour with fans of the genre, but missing a spark.
6 — A good game. Shows promise, but is either unambitious or held back by glaring issues.
5 — An average or mediocre game. It will not excel in any area or advance the genre or medium.
4 — A sub-par game. It might be marred by unignorable problems, though genre fans may still tolerate it.
3 — A legitimately bad game. There might be a few saving graces.
2 — A truly woeful game. Something practically impossible to recommend to anybody.
1 — A genuinely unplayable game. Cannot be recommended under any circumstance.

Reviews are opinions

Subjectivity is always going to be part of a review because a review is, ultimately, an opinion. The extent of subjectivity will vary from writer to writer, review to review. While we often discuss opinions and scores on-team ahead of posting site reviews, a review article is ultimately (in most cases) the opinion of a single author. We actively welcome civil discussion and disagreement in the comments, but please refrain from insulting or attacking individuals for having an opinion that may differ from your own.

If you wish to talk about reviews and ethics with us, feel free to leave a comment here or contact one of the writers. Discourse is healthy.
Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Written by Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Editor Kes is our resident expert in PlayStation and other gaming news. He writes about PS5 exclusives like The Last of Us and Horizon, PS Plus news, and his favorite games — The Witcher, Assassin’s Creed, and God of War — before an evening swim.
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