I admit that as a psuedo-jouralist (someone who has no formal training in the subject, but takes their job seriously nonetheless) it is hard to really discern truth from fact, despite doing the best I can to fact-check as much as possible regarding any news story I post. I have even had to retract several stories because of misinformation pointed out by fans of the site. It happens, and we learn from it.
But something that caught my eye is a story that spread like fire across most of the internet. Websites like the Escapist, Rock Paper Shotgun, Gamespot and countless others released a story regarding Dead Space 1 and 2, and how Electronic Arts apparently did marketing research that deemed the game “too scary” for most audiences, making them shift focus for Dead Space 3.
The original report stemmed from an article by mcvuk.com, and was penned by journalist Ben Parfitt. Parfitt goes on to quote Laura Miele, EA Games’ marketing boss, who had this to say about the product:
Miele herself never says the title of Parfitt’s article, which is “EA Research said Dead Space 1&2 Were too Scary.” In fact, she states that the horror of Dead Space is intact, and is no less scary than the previous titles. The only aspect that seemed to be added to the game was a co-op mode, citing that people felt more comfortable playing with a friend over playing alone.
While Parfitt did report the correct information, his lead-in was completely off base. So much so, that only Penny Arcade seemed to have noticed the deceptive title initially, and wrote a lengthy editorial about the failure of Parfitt and his misleading article title. In fact, Penny Arcade writer, Ben Kuchera, went on to counter argue for EA in this situation, citing how they are building the co-op differently to cater to both single and co-op inclined players. At the very least, Parfitt should change or make a note that the title is somewhat misleading at this time.
Since then, other sites have cited the title as misleading. As for Parfitt, well, I won’t question his journalistic integrity because he did report on the story, but it is the job of the journalist to not mislead their reader-base, especially when you have a major discrepancy between both the title of an article and the content of an article.
As for Dead Space 3, if you wish to play it, both single-player and co-op, you can do so February of 2013.