The 100 lamest game-industry clichés

16. Sweaty mitts - If it's said about you, then that means the reviewer thinks of you as a smelly fat man with massive, sausage-fingered hands that sweat uncontrollably. If it's said about the reviewer, that means he or she IS a smelly fat man with massive, sausage-fingered hands that sweat uncontrollably. That's right, we said "he or she." Deal with it.

Above: Add a greasy ponytail and this image is probably right on the money

17. Cinematic - Shorthand for saying that a game has the pacing, visual direction or production values of a movie. Unless it's a noun, of course, in which case it's a fancy word for "cutscene."

18. Through the roof - If you see this, it means that the gameplay, production values or whatever impressed the reviewer so much that they had no choice but to trot out a tired old figure of speech. Unless, of course, it's preceded by "I got so mad I threw my controller…," in which case it just means the reviewer isn't any good at games or hyperbole.

19. Zelda-killer, Halo-killer, [insert game name]-killer: While it's supposed to mean the opposite, its use has historically been a clear sign that the game in question is vastly inferior to Zelda, Halo or whatever other game it's supposed to "kill."

Above: It didn't work! Quick, send another game to kill the Zelda!

20. In the end - See All in all

21. But does it live up to the hype? - Usually followed by "Yes, now please allow me to spend the next thousand words fellating this game until my nostrils flood."

22. Try before you buy - The game sucks shit through a giant straw, but the reviewer is too "nice" to say so. He or she would prefer that you waste the time necessary to find out on your own, thereby sparing him or her the burden of helping you make an informed decision.

23. Triple-A - Publisher-speak for "So help me God, if this game doesn't get at least a nine out of 10, I will get you fired so fast it'll spark a scandal that will taint your entire parasitic profession."

24. Eye candy - Pretty pictures that, while perhaps not actually delicious when crammed into your eyeballs, will be fun to look at until you start focusing on the gameplay and ignoring them. Alternately, boobs.

25. [X] blows [Y] out of the water - So wait, does that mean the normal thing is for X to blow Y IN the water? We're confused.

26. Check it out if you're a fan of [movie/cartoon/comic book] - "I hate it, but maybe you'll like it, you bottom-feeding plebe."

27. Take the action online - Use that high-speed internet connection to stop playing through a story with goals and objectives, and start playing with a bunch of 12-year-olds who think screaming the N-word over and over again is the ultimate form of communication.

28. Wii puns - Is Nintendo's console "Wiik?" Does the company want you to "get hands-on with your Wii?" Are people who buy Chicken Shoot "Wii-tarded?" These were old and unfunny within hours of the April 2006 announcement that the Nintendo Revolution was undergoing a name change, and they're not any fresher now.

Above: GET IT!?!?!?

29. Replay value - Industry shorthand for "reasons to not return this game for store credit the instant you finish the story mode."

30. Deserves a place in your collection - Instead of playing this game, you should carefully unwrap it and place it on a shelf next to other games for the same console. Now, stand back and admire how all the logos on the box spines line up perfectly. Congratulate yourself for a job well done, and return to your real hobbies of organizing iron filings and never, ever leaving the house.

31. Visceral action - When reviewers say this, it means that you'll experience the sort of gut-clenching thrills that come with introducing your enemy's jaw to a curb while simultaneously sawing his arms off with a chainsaw bayonet. It's also likely to mean you'll see intestines flying everywhere, which would be the literal meaning of the phrase.
Above: Visceral, in both senses of the word

32. Rough around the edges - Ridiculously unfinished.

33. Level of polish - A way of quantifying exactly how unfinished a game looks.

34. For fans of the genre - If you like puzzle games, then you'll probably like this puzzle game that you just now chose to read about. If you like FPSes, you'll probably like this FPS. If you like… you know what? You've probably got the idea.


  • joshdaman123 - March 12, 2011 2:14 a.m.

    ive always wanted to be a game reviewer, now i know how to do it better :D
  • FanofSaiyan - December 7, 2009 3:58 a.m.

    Hope these guys don't have any enemies. lol
  • FanofSaiyan - December 7, 2009 3:28 a.m.

    How do you bend a PSP like that? Must've been playing Me & My Katamari. lol.
  • olio - October 15, 2009 8:12 a.m.

    Man, this article suddenly makes me self-conscious about my own writing... It was still funny, though. There's a lot of spinning going on in the gaming world, and it's funny to see that somebody's finally getting called out on that crap.
  • theschwartzb - August 25, 2009 3:27 p.m.

    Hahahahaha. "This game sucks shit throug ha giant straw", that is classic GR, and also why I come back for more.
  • CombatCat120 - August 1, 2009 11:54 a.m.

    Never knew that so many words used in reviews meant the same(See All in All)
  • winner2 - June 19, 2009 2:01 p.m.

    number 69 made my day lol
  • caboose4400 - June 17, 2009 7:08 a.m.

    i dont think i'd be able to break a controller in half xbox controller no normal person could break but PS2 maybe....any way great article
  • AlpineGuy - June 15, 2009 9:35 p.m.

    How DID that PSP break, anyway? Regardless, great article!
  • GamesRadarMikelReparaz - April 15, 2009 6:15 p.m.

    That would be Resident Evil on GameCube.
  • Chicago - January 22, 2009 9:44 p.m.

    Nos 25, 96, and 100 are the best. But for 96 what game is that? Recaptcha for this legal $53.620,924.90
  • Kirbykiller4 - December 17, 2008 11:18 p.m.

    I don't actually think I could snap a controller in half with my bare hands anyway. And no,I'm not saying first,most sites ban people for saying that,and I'm sure this site will eventually. FFFFFFFUUUUU- I just said it
  • Danomeon - June 19, 2009 9:21 p.m.

    I generally find that all of these cliches are unavoidable in writing a review. The point of a review is to inform others how good or bad the game is, and some of these phrases are overused simply because they get the job done. Everyone knows what "Action packed" means, and that word is a good descriptor. I hear people say that a game is "Beautiful" alot and do I mind it? No, mainly because it is the most simple way to describe the graphics. Not to mention the fact that some of these words can be used to further bring others towards a good game. For example, if you said that Okami (You know you cannot resist this game!) was "Revolutionary" and "Action packed", people would want to purchase it more.

Showing 1-13 of 13 comments

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