Why I don’t write reviews on Medium

And I don’t particularly care to read about them either.

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

It’s okay to blog about whatever you want. Whether it’s to have all your thoughts collected in one place, you want to entertain others, teach ideas, or any of the other 500 billion reasons to write.

For me, I enjoy writing articles that help convince others to try out new shows, music, etc. Reviews don’t cut it.

This article is mostly intended for gaming and anime topics, but can easily apply to others as well!

Some “reviews” try to make you try something they basically told you all about

I think I get irritated the most by reviews when I read someone explaining a lot of the characters, plot points, and themes of a story and then end it by saying something along the lines of, “If this is your kind of thing, you’d like it for sure!” Actually, I won’t because you spoiled all the interesting parts!

Recommending shows, games, and books to other people can be challenging because a lot of the reasons why you love them are things people won’t be able to experience until they’re several hours into it. Don’t spoil the important aspects of the media! You should only subtly allude to them at best. A lot of the fun when you explore a new game or show is to figure things out yourself. Having someone else tell you what to do or how it all goes down will ruin your sense of accomplishment and downgrade any interesting plot twists.

Spoiler-free reviews are a thing for sure, but they aren’t terribly common on Medium from what I’ve seen. If people are writing reviews on here, I’d think people benefit more from writing spoiler-free. You could kind of argue that my “Hey, do this” articles are reviews, but I wouldn’t loop them into the same group because my intentions are different.

It’s more satisfying writing, “Hey, do this” articles

I’m a big nerd all-around who enjoys video games, anime, manga, J-pop, and art. There is so much depth and variety in all these topics I enjoy that I know many other people have very little exposure to. I enjoy bringing those topics to people’s attention. If you’ve ever recommended a book or a TV show to a friend and they later come back to you saying they checked it out and loved it, how did you feel? Probably pretty good, right?

I haven’t written many articles on Medium, but of the ones I have I am the most proud of the ones where someone comments saying they’ll try out an anime or game I recommended. It’s fine if people don’t comment so long as I got someone to read the article and walk away thinking about it.

When I write my articles, my main goal is to bring exposure onto the specific game or anime I’m recommending. I’m not trying to convince you that it’s the best thing ever (despite using some clickbait titles). I like to highlight a couple big selling points that I think interest many people without going into too much detail. A lot of the fun in trying out something new is figuring out why it’s so captivating on your own!

When I read reviews or articles that explore deeper themes behind various media, I don’t walk away wanting to do something. I kind of sit there and think, “Oh that’s cool.” or “I guess that’s one way to think about it…” and then move on with my day without ever wanting to research the topic more. This is totally a me (ALiAS) thing, but I imagine there are a lot of other people who feel the same when they read reviews.

Medium is a weird place to go for reviews

I can’t really speak for many topics that I don’t go out of my way to research, but I can speak for anime/gaming topics.

If you want people to read your anime review, you are way better off writing your review on website that specializes anime content such as Myanimelist or AniList. Those are the places I go when I actually want to read show reviews and from what I’ve seen those kind of sites bring the most engagement. There are plenty of people on those platforms who will have knowledge of the show you’re talking about and will be able to comment or hold a conversation with you even if the anime isn’t popular. On Medium, you will barely get that. Even if you were to talk about something well known like Attack on Titan or Fullmetal Alchemist, engagement levels are pretty damn low. I don’t like being disrespectful in my articles, but you’re honestly kind of wasting your time writing anime reviews on Medium.

In the case of video games, Medium has a somewhat decent following in gaming topics. Though just like with anime, there are plenty of other specialized gaming areas on the internet that are more suited for getting people to read your review and interact. Gaming reviews are more popular in the format of YouTube videos or catching someone’s livestreams. You really benefit more from mostly seeing gameplay rather than mostly reading about the game.

Wrapping things up

That’s pretty much it. Like I said at the start of this article, there’s many reasons why people write their blogs and of course not all of them align with my reasons. I think a really fun part about writing is getting some reactions and conversations started so if you’re writing reviews and you’re not getting that experience then you might need to rethink where and how you write.

Thanks for reading!

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Fun nerdy blog about gaming, anime, J-pop, and other topics catered to 2% of Medium readers.