PC Gamer controversy
A minor scandal surrounded the PC Gamer review of Ascendancy
. PC Gamer gave the game high marks, and made it an Editor's Choice game. However, the individual who reviewed the game for PC Gamer also turned out to be the author of the game's Strategy Guide, leading many to wonder if the review had been padded in order to boost sales of the Strategy Guide.
In Computer Gaming World #151 (February 1997), a letter by William Trotter was published in which he shared his view on the matter. Summarized, he needed money to pay off repairs on his house and therefore gladly agreed to write the strategy guide. However, the developers failed to give him any information on the game, not even technology trees, and a one-month deadline. So he had no other choice but to play the game non-stop for two weeks, becoming eventually obsessed with it. So when PC Gamer hired him for the review, he really thought Ascendancy
was a great game, and he failed to see the conflict of interest. In hindsight, he agrees with the bad review in Computer Gaming World (see MobyRanks), the strategy guide turned out to be pathetic and he didn't receive any royalties from it at all.
Information also contributed by Afterburner
- 1996 - Best Strategy Software