I find new sites everyday that say game journalism is broken. Those sites are striving to do something different, but that doesn’t make the way everyone else does it any less credible.
Let me tell you why.
Some outlets I’ve found focus on a shorter list of stories with lengthier discussions within each, a great approach. I’m an individual that enjoys sitting down with a cup of tea and enjoying a lengthy article, review, or feature that can stretch for several pages. There’s a certain enjoyment I get from reading well researched, well formatted editorials.
Their argument is that their is too much news to cover, and that only the most important happenings should be documented. Their argument, however, isn’t entirely valid.
Like world news, the game industry is a happening bubble of news, happenings, and events. And even more like world news, people want a summation of those events. Not everyone wants all the news, but every piece of news has an audience. After all, every game sells at least one copy, does it not?
The idea behind featured posts, sliders, carousels and other inventions of modern web design make it possible to highlight what we deem the most important news for each day. While not everyone cares about Bioshock Infinite getting a release date, there are many out there that do, and page views tell us that.
If you set a limit on the amount of news for your site, there are pros and cons you’ll certainly deal with. Sure, your content will be meaty and well researched, that’s great. But, how do you decide what’s “important” for your readers, how do you decide what makes the cut?
Like anything, it’s opinion. Unfortunately, that tends to eliminate audiences you don’t want to ever eliminate. If you have too much news, conversely, your site gets cluttered, difficult to navigate, and overbearing.
As Yoda would probably (maybe?) say: a balance you must have.
To conclude, game journalism isn’t broken — mostly because it’s still being formed. You can’t break something that’s being built, because we’re not done building yet. We’re still deciding and experimenting with what works and what doesn’t.
There are many ways of writing, even more ways of reporting — but one opinion vs the other doesn’t make the other any less credible…yet. Each site has their style, each has their own audience to suit it.
One thing’s for sure, if you’re happy with how you’re doing and your audience is in agreement, you’re doing something right.