Techingames.net attempts to provide a new and hopefully much better way to gather information about games. It allows you to keep track of what games were released on what platform, but also what versions were released. Games these days are much more fluid than they used to be - features get added (and sometimes removed) in later versions, bugs were fixed (and sometimes added), and some versions on some platforms had different implementations (different controls) or different levels of quality (resolution, controller response, etc.). A game at launch can be quite different from a game a year later, and very few current publications are properly equipped to take that into account.
Also, these days, if you want to know if a game supports a certain peripheral (camera, move controller, driving wheel, VR headset) or makes use of certain features (motion controls, voice control), not that many reviews out there provide such information anymore. There are a lot of websites out there that try (or have temporarily tried) to keep track of some of those features, usually limiting themselves to a very narrow set. Sometimes they are in a youtube video, and you may need to look for 10 minutes to find out that it was mentioned (or more likely, not).
Collecting all the information you want and need can take a lot of time. There's official reviews, user reviews all over the place (from amazon to metacritic), but many sites use different review scoring standards and very often end up being opinion pieces or clickbait (score a certain highly anticipated game much lower to attract people who are interested in why you scored so low).
Then there are different websites out there that allow you to keep track of if you own a game, started it, beaten it's campaign, or completed it.
At the heart of any good information management is a decent relational database that allows you to pose questions. So what this site does, is bring it all together first in terms of being able to store everything, and then to 'mine that data'. This is where the site should be able to beat any Wiki very quickly. We keep track of games, versions, issues, features, user values, and so on.
Currently you can add games. When adding a game, we currently keep track of Name, Publisher, Developer, Description, IsDLC, RequiresOriginal and IsRemake. A game can be a child of another game, which we currently use for remakes and/or series. There is some room for improvement and expansion here, and that will happen.
However, at the Game level we do already aggregate a lot of the information that is connected to the Game through lower levels. For instance, score averages for both published reviews and user reviews are shown here, and if you've added modifiers to scores from certain sources (more about that later), this will also be shown.
The next level is versions of games. A version of a game is a version of a game that was released on a certain platform. This is where most of the actual
information is linked to. A game is launched as a specific version with a lot of different properties like performance, gameplay, bugs, and reviews are typically written for one of these early versions. Later versions can (and these days very frequently do) add new features, fix issues, improve performance and so on. So this is where we keep track of this information, and in the game feature overview, you can see already in what version the feature was first added.
The Features section is itself a database that can be infinitely expanded to cover every aspect of games you can think of, and that's what we're currently trying to do. So you want to keep track of how many types of birds there are in a certain game. You can add a feature animals, and then add a child feature birds that you say holds numeric values. Done. Now you can keep track of this for any game.
The nice part is that a game overview page will show only all features that have been added for any of the versions of the game. So if anti-aliasing or Driving Wheel support is irrelevant for, say, Super Mario Bros., it won't be filled in, and then it won't show up in the overview. So it is really and truly dynamic, you can track anything, and it will only show what you've decided to track.
The feature detail page will also give you a summary of examples posted for that feature. E.g. if all games that support photomode have a screenshot or a community thread dedicated to that game's photomode, the Photomode feature page will show all that together.
Feature values are the values we (or you!) enter for a certain games. These values should generally be purely factual. E.g. the native resolution a game runs at, or how many players are supported in co-op mode. Under Links and Notes you can document your sources for these values and/or upload images or screenshots to document them.
But you can do more with them than that. You can see nice graphs of a feature for a certain platform developing over time, what first recorded game version supported it, if that feature became a mainstay for games following or went out of vogue, or query the whole database for games that have certain values for that feature. Give me all games that support local co-op, or have a (target) framerate of 60, etc.
Also very powerful, you can review specific values, and the aggregates for these will also show up in the game overview. This allows you to determine if a game is being liked for the reasons that you actually care about. These reviews are also aggregated into the main categories (graphics, controls, etc.) so that gives you a nice score overview there as well.
We've tried our best to make adding information as easy and fast as possible. For instance, you can copy versions to create new ones, and with a platform sync button you can generate versions for that game's platforms, for games that have multi-platform releases. They will only fill in the blancs, so existing values will not be overwritten. You can also quickly go to edit or add a value for a specific feature from the game overview.
User Values are values that apply to a specific user, typically you. E.g. how much did you pay for a game or did you rent it, did you complete the main campaign, etc. They can still be used for some nice statistics, like average purchase price etc.
Games tend to have issues, large or small. They always had, but in these days of online patching, an initial release may have become a little bit more tolerant of them, no doubt helped by the increase in complexity. You can track them here, attach links to sites and youtube videos, screenshots, if you know of a workaround, and what version solved them.
Published Critic Reviews
Reviews too are tracked for what version of the game was reviewed. This helps put into perspective what the game was like when the game was reviewed.
As some meta-review sites do not expose their 'weighting' of review sites or why some sites are excluded and others not, on this site you can decide for yourself. If you think a certain publication structurally rates games too high or too low, you can apply a user filter and correct for this. You can even do this for individual reviewers. Just add a user filter, and in the filter you can specify things like '+50', '-25' or '*0.9'. Scores that end up under 0 or over 1000 will be capped at that score. Games will show your weighted score aggregate in front of the original critic average if you added any user filters to any publication or reviewer, and a user review aggregate. We plan to add filters there as well, for instance exclude all reviews scoring below 3 tends to get rid of 'political statements'.
If you are wondering if a scale of 0-1000 is really necessary, the point is choice. One of the best game magazines of now over 20 years ago, ACE Magazine, happens to employ that scale, so we thought it would be a nice gesture to honor that. It's also far easier to lose precision (divide by 10 or 100) afterwards than to gain it, so if there's demand, we can always give users the choice.
Users, and that is you!, can review almost anything. You can review a game version, a publication, a reviewer!, a specific game feature, and it will all show up in nice aggregates, can be searched, etc. If you write a review of a game, then you can give a general impression, and then focus on the features that you thought stood out, good or bad, and they will show up on your review page under the right headings automatically and count towards the total score a game gets for that feature implementation.
So, go ahead, contribute what you can! You will be awarded reputation points for your contributions, especially whenever something you added was verified by an admin. We've tried to make things as easy as possible for you (and ourselves!), but if anything is unclear or you are missing features, go ahead and DISQUS them in the comments below. And don't worry about having to signing up, you can at least use your gmail account to make that easy too.