What Exactly Is Jim Sterling Reviewing? Not Much Apparently

What Exactly Is Jim Sterling Reviewing? Not Much Apparently

As many of you may have seen, Destructoid’s Jim Sterling wrote a less than stellar review for Final Fantasy XIII (4/10). One of his tweets read:

Jim_Sterling: I am officially done with Final Fantasy XIII. That last chapter is an egregious mess of bulls***.

Sterling wrote all over twitter about how bad the game was; he is entitled to his opinion, however, ┬ábecause at the end of the day that’s what a review essentially is. That opinion may have quite possibly been tainted, especially considering he never finished the game -and we have proof to show it. Please enjoy exhibit A below.

What Exactly Is Jim Sterling Reviewing? Not Much Apparently

Did someone forget to do something?

Now, not all games have an actual ending to them. But a game like Final Fantasy – which is based so heavily on story – simply cannot be reviewed unless it’s completed. If you think that’s bad, it doesn’t end there folks. Upon further investigation there are many more questionable reviews that are now popping up.

Now, one can look at this and say “Wait a minute. Maybe he didn’t sync his trophies!” While you may be correct on behalf of the Final Fantasy review, how about explaining what happened to, oh I dunno, maybe his review of Army of Two: the 40th day. I’m pretty sure he’s done a trophy sync since the release of that game. And, wouldn’t you know it, coincidently he has a review up for the title.

Still don’t believe it? Have a look at his trophies for yourself. You be the judge. http://us.playstation.com/publictrophy/index.htm?onlinename=jim_sterling

Now, as far as actually playing Army of Two, I gave him the benefit of the doubt assuming that it could have been played on the 360, but alas, no proof of that in the image below (considering press copies arrived on or a couple of days before release date).

What Exactly Is Jim Sterling Reviewing? Not Much Apparently

Someone put out an A.P.B. we've got a missing game on the loose!

If you want to see where this image came from you can check it out here:


We invite Jim Sterling to defend himself and the integrity of his reviews during the next DualShockers ShockCast. Let’s see if he shows.

Join the Discussion

  • Greatdeceiver

    You dont need to play FF to know it sucks.

  • AeluronLightsong

    I think reviewers when it comes to a long game should at least try to finish the game if they are dedicated to reviewing. Hell I’d do it.

  • Kamille

    of-course reviewers have to finish the games. That is their job! How are they gonna give us a complete view of their perspective if they only played a portion? It would be like reviewing a demo.

    • Faggus McGee

      A reviewers job is to play it and give their thoughts. It isn’t to finish.

  • Kamille

    most likely because Jim is someone that paints himself as honest, with integrity and pro-consumer when he lies to our face.

  • Kamille

    of-course reviewers have to finish the games. That is their job! How are they gonna give us a complete view of their perspective if they only played a portion? It would be like reviewing a demo.

    And just because Jim didn’t like it it doesn’t mean that others won’t too. He needs to give us a complete description of the game to let us decide if we might like it or not.

    Advice from one of the pros in the movie industry:


    • Brett Dunbar

      You don’t need to finish the game to review it. You need to have played enough to be able to say whether it’s worth playing. If you were either bored or frustrated by the game to the point where you actively don’t want to play further you can quite legitimately quit and give a negative review. You could also have a game where the difficulty is such that you can’t finish it, again a perfectly legitimate reason for a negative review.

      • Astralwyrm

        But he could have disclosed that he didn’t complete the game, if anything that would have more impact than lying and saying you played all the way through. I would rather my reviewers play the games all the way through but if it is genuinely that awful.

        • thatdamnrat

          But he didn’t lie, the quote a the start of this article he is clearly saying (to those of us who can actually speak English anyway) that he didn’t complete it, and quit because he was sick of it’s bullshit.

          • Astralwyrm

            That is a tweet though and it could be misinterpreted. He never once mentioned not completing the game in his review.

            “Most of the time, players can’t even choose their own battle party until the end of the game”

            Coming from a guy who didn’t reach the end of the game. Where he chose to stop playing is not quite the end of the game. I’m not defending FFXIII; i honestly hate the game but Journalists should disclose this stuff so the audience can discern for themselves.

    • I think you can ‘drop out’ early after having seen/learned everything, there’s usually 4-6 hours where there is nothing to do but build up to the ending, but you should be required to inform the readers you did so, for instance, you liked the gameplay but hated the story.
      And of course I wouldn’t expect any reviewer to finish grindy bonus content, or complete games that forced a grind, ala Disgaea.
      For example if someone, somehow, really really disliked FF6, it would be acceptable to stop shortly after hitting the World of Ruin, as the final leg of the game is quite obvious in what you must do, and you’ve already played around with the esper system to figure out how minmaxing on it works.

  • TheNaiveCynic

    It is. But you can’t comment on the ‘last chapter’ if you haven’t even played to that point.

    • thatdamnrat

      But he say the last chapter, he THAT last chapter, as in the chapter he played last. This is so clearly a beat up. This assertion you can not review a game without playing to the end is bullshit. If I find the first half of a game so tedious or just plain awful I can’t bring myself to play it, I would feel perfectly justified in decrying it as awful.

  • makcraft

    Even Jesse Cox a longtime fan of FF series just stopped the lets-play solely of the fact that the game is just flawed! I get if Jim was the only person who said critical things against XIII, and you may question that if everyone else would be praising it. BUT NOONE DID PRAISE THE DAMN GAME! (even fans).
    So the point is – Jim is getting picked at, just because he is brave enough to be the vocal minority who would openly criticize that BS!
    This is some head over heels topic that is so weak and these so called ‘Exhibits’ are a shame? What are trying to prove that the game sucked so much that even longtime reviewers couldn’t finish it?

  • ConradZimmerman

    Jim’s a friend, so feel free to take that into consideration when I say this, but there is a point that should be brought up in regards to the Army of Two: 40th Day review mentioned. Using someone’s Gamerscore/Trophy data is not necessarily a reliable means of determining whether or not a reviewer played a game to completion.

    Lots of review code is issued not as a final retail version, but a pre-release version requiring access to “review” or “debug” hardware (this was especially true in 2010, though it seems to happen with less frequency now). These systems aren’t compatible with nor connected to the public servers and users have completely separate, private accounts for use with them. So, I would take any such use of the publicly available data with a big grain of salt.

  • The_Last_Ride

    This is a big problem and props to Dualshockers to releasing this article