A new survey of Metacritic data published yesterday has identified the most consistent, and least consistent videogame publishers, according to the scores that their games receive, placing Rockstar Games at the top of the list and Ubisoft at the bottom.
The findings, from research conducted by GameQuarry and highlighted in David Perry's blog, assign a points value to each scoring bracket in the Metacritic system, with 2 points awarded for a game in the 90-100 bracket, 1 point for an 80-89 score, no points for 70-79, -1 point for 60-69 and -2 points for anything scoring a Metacritic average of 59 or below.
The results saw the Grand Theft Auto publisher score a total of 19 points from 23 titles, closely followed by TellTale Games with 14 points from 23 titles and Blizzard with 11 points from 7 titles.
By comparison Ubisoft ranked bottom with -148 points from a total of 237 games, while Activision fared little better on -138 points from 227 games and THQ sat just above them both on 120 points from 150 games.
Ubisoft's low score is the result of 75 titles which were rated at a Metacritic average of 59 or less, compared with just 4 that managed a score of 90 or above.
"Using this method, publishers who may have created stellar titles, would also be penalised for each low scoring game and given no credit for average games," wrote the report's authors, adding that the findings only reflect historical data, and don't necessarily indicate current trends.
"It is imperative to keep these results in perspective as they do not reflect trends towards an increase or decrease in quality trends. For example, a publisher on the Most Consistent List may in fact be trending towards a decline in quality whereas a publisher on the Least Consistent List may trend towards an increase in quality.
"It is also entirely plausible that the publisher noted, may be a standout leader in a particular genre or platform but performing poorly in another. These variations and possible trends are not presented as it was not inclusive of the requested scope."
In his blog Perry suggests that the research findings add an interesting angle to the debate over the use of Metacritic data in the industry: "This is based on Metacritic data, and let's just say many of my friends are having a VERY heavy discussion (right now), on the validity of the Metacritic data. (So this is incredibly timely and will add fuel to that fire for certain!)"