Gamers Ignore Reviews as Aliens: Colonial Marines Tops UK Retail Chart

Despite bad reviews, Aliens: Colonial Marines by Gearbox/SEGA tops the UK retail charts in its debut week, deposing Dead Space 3 and calling consumers' faith in reviews into question.

Despite bad reviews, Aliens: Colonial Marines by Gearbox/SEGA tops the UK retail charts in its debut week, deposing Dead Space 3 and calling consumers' faith in reviews into question.
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Despite dozens of pretty horrendous reviews, Aliens: Colonial Marines entered the UK retail charts at the number one spot. The first retail week for Gearbox/SEGA‘s much maligned title sees Dead Space 3 knocked into second place.

The UK video game top ten for the week ending 16 February 2013 was as follows:

  1. [New Entry] Aliens: Colonial Marines
  2. [-1] Dead Space 3
  3. [-1] FIFA 13
  4. [-1] Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
  5. [-1] Far Cry 3
  6. [+6] Assassin’s Creed III
  7. [-] Need For Speed: Most Wanted
  8. [-] Just Dance 4
  9. [-] Sonic & All Stars Racing Transformed
  10. [+3] Halo 4

It is unclear if the figures behind the initial position include the pre-order sales, but according to “continuous quantitative retail research” specialists GfK Chart-Track, their data collection methodology is “based on retail/web sales where the data is captured electronically each day via EpoS [Electronic Point of Sale] systems.”

Metacritic, which produces a percentile score based on multiple industry reviews, currently has Aliens: Colonial Marines rated at 50 on the Xbox 360, 44 on the Playstation 3 and 43 on the PC platform. It is the lowest Metacritic score ever awarded to a Gearbox title, with last month’s Borderlands 2 being their highest with 91 on the PS3.

It remains to be seen if consumers in the US and other regions respond in a similar fashion, but the implications are interesting. Does this suggest the power of marketing and IP vastly outweighs consumer common sense? Are games industry reviews not trusted or just not read?

Source: GfK Chart Track (via GamesIndustry.biz)

About the author

Mat Westhorpe

Broken paramedic and coffee-drinking Englishman whose favourite dumb animal is an oxymoron. After over a decade of humping and dumping the fat and the dead, my lower spine did things normally reserved for Rubik's cubes, bringing my career as a medical clinician to an unexpectedly early end. Fortunately, my real passion is in writing and given that I'm now highly qualified in the art of sitting down, I have the time to pursue it. Having blogged about video games (well, mostly EVE Online) for years, I hope to channel my enjoyment of wordcraft and my hobby of gaming into one handy new career that doesn't involve other people's vomit.