The Site

What is Gametactics?
It’s a website about gaming. All manner of gaming news, reviews and videos make their way here, and we know what we’re talking about (seeing as though we’ve done this for quite a few years now…)

The Writers

Justin Lee
Nickname: MikeTwo
Location: Montreal, Canada
Job Title: The Boss
What that entails: Advertising, News, Reviews and Other Corporate Stuff
Gaming History: Started in the Atari 2600 days with Pong and Space Invaders. I loved console gaming because I didn’t have to install anything, just plug and go!

Malcolm Owen
Nickname: Maiko
Location: South Wales
Job Title: Code Monkey and Linguistic Punchbag
What that entails: Doing HTML, sorting out layout of new articles, posting news, drawing Fragged, writing reviews and articles, goading Miketwo into doing some work and putting the word “Whore” after “Corporate” constantly.
Gaming History: Vic 20 and the “Radar Rat Race”, followed by many “Type in” programs, followed by a Master System, Megadrive, Playstation, Dreamcast, Wii and the will to die.
On the PC side, I started on a P166MMX when it was state of the art, and now I am something much better. So far in my quest for gaming endeavors, I have been to a few Lanparties, attended ECTS 2000, and flew with my PC to Holland for a large lanparty, and consequently lose the PC on the way back home thanks to the bad baggage handlers at the airports. I did get it back in the end, mind.
Before working on Gametactics, I worked on Electric Avenue on my own before closing it down to work here. I also did a netshow called “GTV”, which was loved by all, including my Mum.
When I am not working on stuff for Gametactics, I work as a Directory Enquiries rep for one of the largest directory companies in the UK
Gaming Collection: On the PC alone, I have a few bookshelves of games and assorted DVDs, both normal and Anime. I also have 100s of cover CDs for various UK gaming magazines, so if I ever felt the need to play a demo from a few years back, I only have to find the CD and then I am playing straight away. Granted, the addition of NTL Cable to the equation makes getting out of reach demos a lot easier, but there is still a satisfaction to getting a demo from a magazine CD when the internet fails me. I’ve also bought myself a Wii…

Jeffrey Markiewicz
Nickname: WilCon
Location: Toledo, OH
Job Title: Game Critic
What that entails: Reviews
Gaming History: The first game I remember playing was the original Zelda on the NES, gold cartridge and all. I followed that system up with Genesis, Super Nintendo, and eventually the N64. Not content with the state of consoles at the time, I switched to PC gaming. There I enjoyed Half-Life, System Shock 2, Deus Ex, Command & Conquer series and many others before I realized the economics of staying in computer gaming. Therefore I jumped back to consoles with the original Xbox and Halo. Currently own an Xbox 360 and loving every second of it.
Gaming Collection: Over my entire gaming career I have accumulated tons of games, in every possible imaginable genre. I had great times with the Contra, NBA Jam, Mega Man, and even Battletoads. During my PC gaming phase, I was really into Half-Life, Rainbow Six, and Command & Conquer. Here I also found my favorite game of all time, which is Deus Ex. I refuse to believe Deus Ex 2 exists. In recent years my collection seems to include a lot of first-person shooters, action games, and western RPGs and I can’t wait to increase it with what’s coming next on the horizon.

Jonathan Fingas
Nickname: Postal
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Job Title: Writer Extraordinare
What that entails: Reviews, previews, special features and more.
Gaming History: My first exposure to gaming involved mashing keys to get around the maze game that came with the original Compaq PC clones. Since then I’ve been an avid PC gamer who enjoys first-person shooters and real-time strategy the most. I also enjoy my share of console gaming and have a Dreamcast, Gameboy Advance, and PS2 to keep me playing into the wee hours of the night.
Gaming Collection: My PC game collection is so big that I’ve had to pack dozens of the oldest games away in storage tubs. The more recent ones fill out two full-size bookshelves. Odds are that if it was worth playing on the PC, I’ve played it! The console collection is more modest but still includes classics that everyone should own, such as Chu-Chu Rocket or Rez. I treat games as art worth preserving and my collection reflects this.

Glenda Wong
Nickname: Photogal.
Location: Montreal, Canada.
Job Title: Screenshot grabber and camera operator for gaming events
What that entails: Flying with our staff to cover videogame conventions, interviews and capturing screenshots for our reviews
Gaming History: Hack and slash! Nothing like grabbing the controller and slicing up enemies! I don’t have time to think about puzzles, give me a darn sword!
Gaming Collection: Gameboy Advance, PC and my current favorite Xbox!

Review Questions

What is the Marking Scheme
Generally, the Gametactics scoring system is the good old “Out of Ten” methodology, but it works in 2 ways.
For “Games”, there are 4 actual scores: Sound, Graphics, Gameplay and Overall. The Sound, Graphics and Gameplay are marked out of ten to make a score out of 30, which is then divided by 3 to give a score out of 10. For example, a game scoring a total of 27/30 would be 9/10. If the score turns out to have numbers after the decimal point (Such as 6.67 or 7.33) it gets rounded to the nearest whole number (so both 6.67 and 7.33 can become 7). It’s called Averaging, and this average score is the Overall and main score of the review.
For “Other Reviews”, we just use a straight “Out of Ten” with no individual scores for different aspects to take into account. This is because “Other Reviews” can be of anything game related, from films to books, from hardware to Master Chief plush dolls, and therefore it is too difficult to make a unified scoring system that has multiple sections and applies to anything reviewed ever.
Anything scoring a 10 or 9 is definitely worth a look, and games at 8 or 7 could be good for you too. 6, 5 and 4 are fairly average games that you shouldn’t expect anything special from, and anything lower than a 4 should be taken to a dark room and just left there.
A final note on this – Our review scores are just a guide and are of just one person’s opinion. What may float one person’s boat may sink another’s, but is a rough indication of what the game is like. Look at reviews elsewhere as well as to form a full and proper opinion about the game before buying it.

Hey, you reviewed something at 10/10! Nothing can be that perfect!
A game that scores 10/10 is a brilliant example of a game that should be played by anyone and everyone that is into gaming. Granted, if it’s not your type of game, then feel free to believe it doesn’t deserve it, but there are others that will believe that it’s worthy of it. At least try it.
Also, if no game is “perfect” and therefore no game deserves a perfect mark, then what is the point of scoring it out of 10? We could theoretically mark perfect games at 9/10, but then the argument would be that no game is perfect enough to get 9, and the circle of pain continues.
Short answer – Don’t argue it, just take it as “It’s damn good!” and leave it at that.

Bugs and Patches: Do they affect the score?
Yes, we acknowledge that some games have bugs and that for PC games you have the ability to patch them, but unless the bugs are showstoppers (i.e. they break the game) and they are not quickly addressed in a short time after the initial release, they won’t be taken into account. The fact that a game may be patched so quickly after release to solve a major problem may be mentioned in the review, and if it’s severe enough it may affect the score, but this will be fairly infrequent. Patches that are released many weeks and months after the initial sale of the game, however, will not be taken into account.