Michibiku uses a ten-point review scale, designed to be used in its entirety. Below are our descriptors for each score.
A 1 rating indicates that the game is not functional.
A 2 rating means a game runs, but has no redeemable aspects. There’s not even a portion of the game that you can enjoy if you ignore the rest, but it is technically playable.
Games that earn a 3 rating have something. Anything. There is a part of these games that could be worth experiencing, even if the game itself is not worth your time. Is it a side mode? Is it just the art or music? It is not the gameplay. The gameplay is definitely bad.
A 4 rating means it could have a few more scraps of interest, but the game itself just leaves you feeling as if your time has been wasted. It is, as a whole, a frustrating game.
If a game is generally sound but just not compelling in a way that makes it worth your time, it could end up with a 5. Unlike a 6, bright spots are few and far between, and scores of 5 and below mean we recommend against picking it up.
Titles with a 6 rating are by their very nature uneven, as there can be times you’ll have fun, but generally some tolerance for messy aspects is required. They may wear out their welcome way too soon, or only get fun after you’ve taken its master class in obtuse interfaces. There’s enjoyment in 6/10 games, but it comes at a cost.
Games that earn a 7 rating are fun, engaging titles that may be hit-and-miss but are generally worth your time. These games won’t transcend genre preferences, so if you’re not into rhythm games, maybe don’t pick up rhythm games rated a 7 or below. (But come on. Be into rhythm games already.)
A 8 rating gives the game our seal of approval. It may not be for absolutely everyone, and there may be some rough aspects of the game here and there. Still, if a game gets an 8 or above, we’re saying you should play it, possibly even if it’s not usually in your wheelhouse.
A 9 rating is a recommendation without caveats. It’s one of the best games of the year, and consistently delivers a quality experience.
A 10 rating is not a mark of perfection, but does indicate that we think it’s an all-time classic and shouldn’t be missed.
When reviewing a publisher-provided copy of the game, a note appears below the score indicating this. The same applies to our import coverage: if it’s not a North American release, a descriptor below the score will explain its foreign origins.
If you have any more questions, you can contact us at editors[at]michibiku.com.