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The New GameSpot FAQ

Hello, my friend. Stay awhile and listen...


After far too long, we've finally rebuilt GameSpot from the ground up. As you can imagine, a lot of things changed, and so we've put together this nifty FAQ to explain those changes and to (hopefully) answer most of the questions that you may have.

What's Changed

All of the things. All of them. (Original from Hyperbole and a Half)
All of the things. All of them. (Original from Hyperbole and a Half)

Basically, everything changed in one way or another as we transitioned over to a totally rad new technical platform. That said, here's a shortlist of the biggest changes:

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Now Playing: New GameSpot Walkthrough

  • The entire site is now TOTALLY SWEET and fully responsive so it works on desktops, tablets, and mobile devices
  • Community members who write great blogs and reviews will have their contributions more prominently featured around the site
  • Popular games may have more than one review so we can share multiple perspectives
  • No more half-point review scores!
  • Community tools for writing reviews and blogs are the same ones that our editors use, and our tools are AWESOME
  • New weekly shows like GameSpot News to The Waiting Game are just the tip of the iceberg of goodness heading your way!

And that's just the start! Over the coming weeks and months, we'll be making tweaks and adjustments, rolling out entirely new features, and, of course, fixing bugs as they pop up.

What does the FAQ say? (Blame former GameSpotter Stanley Lin for this one).

Frequently Asked Questions

Why did you redesign GameSpot? I liked it just like it was!

GameSpot is now over 17 years old, and for most of that time we've been using the same technology and the same tools, which is CRAZY.

On the technical end, this means that it's been really hard to build new features or to even keep the existing ones going. It's also been really hard on our editors, who often have to spend more time getting an article or review published than it took them to write it.

So rather than putting a new coat of paint on the site, we decided to rebuild it entirely from the ground up with modern technology, which required a full redesign.

Why did you get rid of my favorite feature?

We've completely remade the entire site from scratch, which meant that we unfortunately had to make some hard decisions as to which features would be retained on the new GameSpot.

Ultimately, we decided to focus on the core features that the vast majority of you depend on so as to avoid having features on the site that weren't properly maintained or were totally busted as a result.

Why did the review score system change?

As times have changed, we felt that we no longer needed to be so granular with our review scores. With the old system, we had 20 different possible scores but only 10 score definitions, which led to some confusion. If an 8 is "great" and a 9 is "superb," what purpose does an 8.5 serve? To address this, we've decided to simplify and remove half-points all together.

Were GameSpot's old reviews converted to the new point scale? What about my old reviews?

No, our older reviews are remaining on the same point scale that they were originally scored on, as are yours.

Will my new reviews have to use the new point scale?

Yes, all reviews going forward will use the new point scale. In other words, no scores with half-points.

I think I found a bug. How can I report it?

Bummer! While we're doing our best to keep things bug-free, some will inevitably pop up for us to squash. If you happen to run across one, we would totes appreciate it if you posted about it in our bugs and feedback forum. Thanks!

What's happened to Unions?

Unfortunately, Unions were one of the features that we had to make the difficult decision to cut from the site.

Though we do not have Unions on the new GameSpot, we gave Union leaders the opportunity to have their Unions converted into standard forums. This process is underway, and until it is done, these former Unions will unfortunately be inaccessible.

If you are a Union leader that has not yet opted into converting your Union, it's not too late to fill out this form. You still have until October 11, 2013!

If I converted my Union, can I be made into a moderator?

In the coming weeks, we will be making an announcement about a process for accepting new moderator volunteers. Please check back later for more details!

What about my User Created Board?

As with Unions, User Created Boards have gone away. Unlike Unions, we did not allow UCBs to be converted into standard forums.

Were there any changes to forum signatures?

To avoid distracting signatures or forum posts that have longer signatures than the posts themselves, we have restricting sigs to a maximum of 500 characters and a single, non-animated image up to 600x125.

We also added an option so you can hide other people’s signatures while you browse the forums.

Wait, you banned animated GIFs?

No, that's not the case--we just eliminated animated GIFs from signatures because they can be so distracting. You'll still be able to post them in blogs and forums, and you'll still be able to use them for your avatar.

How is "GIF" pronounced anyway?

Well, it's sure not pronounced "JIFF," if that's what you thought. This means you, Steve Wilhite.

What happened to Fuse?

We've upgraded user profiles to include the key features found in Fuse, such as the user activity feed, to more tightly integrate it into the core GameSpot experience. As such, Fuse no longer exists.

What happened to my level and emblems?

In the short term, we have preserved everyone's level and emblems in the Emblems page of their profile, where they will be able to show them off for generations to come.

Longer term, we will be rolling out a brand new leveling system. New folks will start from scratch, but existing members who earned levels and emblems on the old GameSpot will receive a starting bonus, depending on those levels and emblems--think of it like carrying your Shepard over from Mass Effect 2 to Mass Effect 3.

What happened to all of the game achievements in my profile?

Unfortunately, we are no longer--at least for now--supporting game achievement tracking. We will, however, be considering this for the future.

Were my forum posts/reviews/game lists/blogs/etc. carried over?

Yup! Your existing content was carried over to the new site, with only a couple exceptions:

  • As Unions and User Created Boards are no longer be supported, content created in either will not be migrated. Union board posts for those Unions that have been converted into standard forums, however, will be migrated
  • As mentioned above, we no longer support game achievement tracking, and so that data was not migrated

How will community contributions be highlighted on the new site?

For the new GameSpot, one of our goals is to make a much bigger deal out of all the great content that you all produce. To that end, we will feature the top community-contributed content on our key pages right alongside our own stuff!

We're also putting more control in your hands. For example, reviews that you mark as being helpful are more likely to bubble up and get them featured on the game page.

We'll have plenty more to announce in the coming weeks and months, so stay tuned for more!

Can I use words like "class?"

Yes! You will no longer have difficulty saying words like "class," or "style," or whatever. I can't believe that I just had to type that.

Will I still be able to download files or videos?

Over the years, file downloads such as demos, patches, mods, and map pack downloads have become less and less of a focus for us, in part due to platforms such as Steam which have made the necessity for these services largely irrelevant. As such, on the new GameSpot, we will not be offering file downloads at all.

This will also apply to videos as we shift to streaming-only video distribution. Again, this is both a reflection of usage stats and how the online world itself has changed as the result of the influence of YouTube, Netflix, and others. Plus, you have to admit that the proliferation of Wi-Fi and mobile web has made the need to download videos to watch them later sorta pointless.

I've still got an active Total Access subscription. What about my benefits?

First of all, thanks for your support and for being an awesome person!

If you've still got an active Total Access subscription, this means that it will run through January 31, 2014 at the latest. Right now, you're only really receiving two main benefits--no ads and HD video downloads--and we will carry over these over into the new site until your subscription expires.

Will there be a new Total Access subscription program?

We currently have no plans to roll out a new Total Access subscription program. That said, if there is enough community demand for one, and if we are able to create a new program that will provide a real, tangible value, it is something that we will consider.

Is there a dark theme?

Yes! While we will be defaulting to our lighter theme, there is a switch in the header that allows you to switch to dark, and your choice of theme will be saved via a cookie for the future.

Does GameSpot support Salty Bucks?

GameSpot does not condone gambling, even with fake money. I am not GameSpot, however, so as far as I'm concerned, you can fake bet all you like. Just remember to always bet on DBZ. Except for when you shouldn't.

Have you made changes to how you moderate comments, forum posts, etc.?

Yes! We have made changes to the GameSpot Community Code of Conduct to help clean up our forums and comment sections. See all the details.

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