The Video Game Critic's Explanation of Icons

In order to spice up the reviews, I often assign icons to each game. Some icons are insightful and some are just silly, but I like to think they add a little spice to the reviews. Below are explanations of the 67 icons spread over 11 arbitrary categories. See Icon Statistics Page for statistical breakdown.

Seasonal icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
WinterSeasonal winter funFeatures snow, ice, and harsh winter conditions.
SpringSeasonal spring funFeatures beautiful elements of spring.
SummerSeasonal summer funGame features jungle, beach, aquatic, or other warm locations.
AutumnSeasonal autumn funGame features distinctive elements of autumn.
ChristmasContains Christmas themesThis game is great to play around the holidays.
HalloweenContains Halloween themesEmbodies the sights and sounds of Halloween.

Positive icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
CooperativeGreat Cooperative PlayTry teaming up with a friend for this one.
MultiplayerIdeal for three or more playersThis is ideal for multi-player/party action.
Great Original MusicGreat original musicThis game contains terrific original music.
FunnyThis game is funny!This game might make you laugh.
ComebackReturn to GloryMarks a triumphant return for the franchise.
Chicks Dig ThisChicks Dig This!Even girls like this game! That's sexist.
Hidden GemThis game is a hidden gemNot a well-known title, but worth checking out.

Negative icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
Long LoadsWarning: Long load timesSuffers from long, aggravating load screens.
Carpal TunnelWarning: May cause Carpal Tunnel SyndromePlaying this game will make your hand hurt.
BuggyWarning: Bugs and glitchesThis game is known to have glitches and bugs.
BoringCaution: May cause drowsinessDo not play while operating heavy machinery. Might put you to sleep.
ETET Award for extreme disappointmentThis game didn't live up to lofty expectations.

Genre icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
RPGRole-playing Game (RPG)This is a role-playing style game (usually turn-based).
StrategyStrategy gameThis is a strategy game.
PuzzlePuzzle gameThis is a puzzle-oriented game (Tetris, Dr. Mario, etc).
MusicalMusical gameGame is musical in nature (Guitar Hero, Dance Central, etc).

Content icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
Kid FriendlySuitable for childrenThis game is suitable for young children.
AdultWarning: Contains Adult Subject MatterThis game contains adult themes unsuitable for kids.
ViolenceContains violence and goreMay contain brutal violence, blood, and gore.
ProfanityContains bad languageThis game contains profanity.
ControversialControversialThis game has been a source of controversy.
ScaryThis game is scaryCaution: This is a scary game!
iconFrighteningThis game is frighteningCaution: This game is extremely frightening!
iconiconTerrifyingThis game is terrifyingCaution: This game is downright terrifying!

Media icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
Download OnlyOnly Available Via DownloadOnly available via download from an on-line service like Xbox Live.
Floppy DiskComes on 5.25" floppy diskComes on 5.25" floppy disk media.
CDCD FormatComes on a CD. Notable for systems like Neo Geo which also support cartridges.
Two CDsIncludes two CDsThis game comes on two CDs.
Three CDsIncludes three CDsThis game comes on three CDs.
Four CDsIncludes four CDsThis game comes on four CDs.

Controller icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
Light GunUses light gun controllerSupports (or requires) light gun controller.
Steering WheelWorks with Steering WheelThis game works with an optional steering wheel controller.
Trak-ballSupports trak-ballThis game supports optional trak-ball controller.
Balance BoardSupports balance boardSupports balance board controller (like the one for the Wii).
KeyboardSupports keyboardSupports (or requires) keyboard controller.
PaddleUses paddle controllerUses Atari 2600 paddle controllers.
MotionSupports Kinect or Move motion controlsSupports Kinect (Xbox 360) or Move (Playstation 3) controllers.

Effects icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
VoiceHas voice featureGame supports voice synthesis (Intellivision) or voice recognition (microphone).
3D GlassesSupports 3D GlassesWorks with 3D glasses such as those available for the Sega Master System.

Special icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
DifficultArthur Award for Extreme DifficultyNamed after Arthur of Ghouls and Ghosts fame, this is hard as nails.
HottieMay contain hottiesThis game may contain one or more hot-looking babes.
Best at NightBest played at nightThis game is best enjoyed at night.
BrainCaution: May require use of brainThis game is cerebral in nature.
ExpensiveRare and ExpensiveThis game is rare and expensive.
Fake ReviewThis is a fake reviewThis game is not real.

Origin icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
ImportImportedThis game originated from outside of the USA.
HomebrewHomebrewThis is a home-made title developed for a classic system.
HackHack of another gameThis game is a modified version of an old title.
PrototypeThis is a prototypeThis is an unfinished, previously unreleased prototype.
Film-basedBased on a filmThis game is based on a movie.
TV-basedBased on a TV showThis game is based on a television program.

Specific icons

IconNameTool tip (mouse-over)Description
PenguinMay contain penguinsThis game may contain penguins.
CheeseMay contain cheeseThis game may contain cheese. Yes, the dairy product.
ChickenMay contain chickensThis game may contain chickens.
PigMay contain pigsThis game may contain pigs.
SharksMay contain sharksThis game may contain sharks.
MonkeysMay contain monkeysThis game may contain monkeys.
DragonsMay contain dragonsThis game may contain dragons.
GraveyardsMay contain graveyardsThis game contains a graveyard!
Exploding BarrelMay contain exploding barrelsThis shooter features obligatory exploding red barrels.
PirateMay contain piratesThis game contains pirates (as in Pirates of the Caribbean).

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