Days Gone - Stop pretending there's a huge disconnect between critics and gamers

Days Gone 3

The negative reviews for Days Gone are misleading people to believe there's a huge disconnect between critics and gamers.

Days Gone is the newest addition to the PlayStation 4 family, and Deacon can already brag about being more popular in Japan than Kratos, Connor, and whatever the hell the creature is from The Last Guardian. However, despite its commercial success in Japan and the UK (it’s 2019’s biggest launch so far), gamers won’t stop complaining about the negative reviews Bend Studio’s biggest project to date has received.

Because Days Gone didn’t receive the number of kisses and bjs critics gave The Last Of Us, God Of War, Horizon Zero Dawn, Persona 5, and any other PlayStation 4 exclusive with over 80 on Metacritic, this apparently means every outlet had an agenda or is not able to appreciate quality.

Yet, when you look at the game’s Metacritic profile, the reception from gamers and critics really isn’t that big.

Rather than the disparity being a mountain, it’s instead a tiny hill that only looks like Mount Everest from a very far distance.

Days Gone - Stop pretending there's a huge disconnect between critics and gamers

Days Gone Deacon 2

To stop any Wild Hogs with backwards caps and stupid tattoos from claiming I hate Days Gone, I will point out that I have praised the title as a solid foundation similar to Drake’s Fortune. Like Uncharted’s rough around the edges beginning, I strongly believe that Days Gone will catapult Bend Studio to bigger and better things.

However, that’s all Days Gone is. It’s not a masterpiece or a revelation, it’s simply a good and solid foundation for a series that can go on to become great. And critics don’t deserve the flack they’ve received for giving it middling to negative reviews.

While Days Gone’s narrative and characters are excellent (Sam Witwer’s Deacon can spearhead the franchise to a better future), its open-world is sparse and dull. Yes, the Freaker hordes are terrifying, but Oregon is a largely boring landscape with a lack of variety. Unlike The Witcher 3 and Red Dead Redemption 2, Days Gone embodies everything I loathe about the open-world genre; it merely corresponds with Ubisoft’s checklist for creating playgrounds that are large and full of content, but ultimately repetitive and tiresome.

I don’t agree with every complaint critics have made (Deacon didn’t need a character arc like Joel and the wedding scene doesn’t epitomise any bad writing), but Days Gone is far from being immune to criticism. If I was to review it, I would give it a 7/10, which is pretty much the consensus amongst both critics and gamers.

When you look at Days Gone’s Metacritic profile, the PlayStation 4 exclusive has a 72 critic rating and an 8.0 user score. This really isn’t that big a difference, especially when you remember how critics enjoyed DmC: Devil May Cry while fanboys whipped it with twos and zeros.

Plus, Sony’s accolades trailer is a reminder that not every critic hates Days Gone, meaning Bend Studio’s newest IP really isn’t an embodiment of the supposed disconnect between critics and gamers. Certain individuals on the sides of both critics and gamers may hate Days Gone, just like a bunch of people on both sides enjoy it.

Maybe the PlayStation 4 community feels the need to defend Days Gone because it hasn’t been as well received as other Sony exclusives, but gamers don’t need to become knights in shining armour as Bend Studio’s project isn’t being unfairly abused or criticised. The consensus amongst critics and gamers is that it’s a seven or eight out of ten, which is hardly insulting.

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