Type of siteGaming & Entertainment
RegistrationFree, IGN Insider, Founder's Club
OwnerNews Corporation
Created byImagine Media
Current statusActive

IGN (an abbreviation for the former Imagine Games Network) is a multimedia news and reviews website that focuses heavily on video games. Its corporate parent is IGN Entertainment, which owns and controls separate sites such as GameSpy, GameStats, Rotten Tomatoes and AskMen.

IGN's main website comprises several specialty sites, or "channels", each occupying a subdomain on IGN and covering a specific area of entertainment. Game-related channels include PC Games, Wii, Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PSP, Xbox Live, Wireless, Retro, and iPhone games. In addition, IGN has channels covering movies, music, gear and technology, sports, comic books, television and more.



IGN is based at IGN Entertainment's headquarters in Brisbane, California

Founded in September 1996 as Imagine Games Network, IGN began as five individual websites within Imagine Publishing: (later renamed, PSXPower, Saturnworld, and Ultra Game Players Online. In 1998, the network consolidated the individual sites as system "channels" under the IGN brand. Next-Generation and Ultra Game Players Online were not part of this consolidation; UGPO dissolved with the cancellation of the magazine, and Next-Generation was put "on hold" when Imagine decided to concentrate on launching the short-lived Daily Radar brand.

As of June 2005, IGN claimed 24 million unique visitors a month, with 4.8 million registered users through all departments of the site. IGN is ranked among the top 200 most-visited websites according to Alexa.[1] In September 2005, IGN was acquired by Rupert Murdoch's multi-media business empire, News Corporation.

IGN celebrated their tenth year on the 12 January, 2008.[2]


A member of the IGN staff writes a review for a game and gives it a score between 0 and 10, which is assigned by increments of 0.1 and determines how much the game is recommended. The score is given according to individual aspects like presentation, graphics, sound, gameplay and lasting appeal—each game is given a score in each of these categories, but the overall score for the game is an independent evaluation, not an average of the scores in each category.[3]

IGN rarely gives a game a perfect 10. Some of the games that received a 10/10 score are Soul Calibur for Dreamcast,[4] Pokémon Red and Blue for Game Boy,[5][6] The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for Nintendo 64,[7] Link's Awakening DX for Game Boy Color,[8] The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages for Game Boy Color.[9][10], and Metal Gear Solid for the GameBoy Color. Two more games were awarded perfect 10s in 2008, Grand Theft Auto IV,[11] and Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. IGN UK also gave GTA IV a 10 (this was the first 10 given by IGN UK to a game [12]). The outlet was the first allowed to publish a review for this title, days before an embargo by Rockstar for the remainder of the video game industry. Some game journalists suggested their review was "ethically unsound".[13] To date, IGN has given a total of 28 games (including cross-gen ports) a rating of 10 out of 10.[14] Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots was the latest game to receive a perfect 10 from IGN.[15]

The ratings are:[3]

  • 10.0 (Masterful): "It doesn't get any better than this..."
  • 9.5 to 9.9 (Incredible): "Without a doubt, these are must-own titles that stand at the top of their field."
  • 9.0 to 9.4 (Outstanding): "'s a worthwhile experience with just a few imperfections."
  • 8.5 to 8.9 (Great): "An excellent gaming experience that misses the boat in just a few key areas..."
  • 8.0 to 8.4 (Impressive): "...they're still a heck of a lot of fun and should appeal to most gaming enthusiasts."
  • 7.5 to 7.9 (Good): "...they're still entertaining enough to provide genuine entertainment while they last."
  • 7.0 to 7.4 (Decent): "...they still boast enough credible ingredients to make them fun in smaller doses."
  • 6.0 to 6.9 (Passable): "Rent these games or download the demo first before spending your hard-earned money on it."
  • 5.1 to 5.9 (Mediocre): "...only diehard fans of the particular genre will get any enjoyment out of middling games like these."
  • 5.0 (Meh): "...the epitome of "middle of the road."
  • 4.0 to 4.9 (Poor): "'ll probably find yourself returning to the store for a refund."
  • 3.0 to 3.9 (Bad): " know you have some major suckage going on."
  • 2.0 to 2.9 (Terrible): "Maybe the cat could find some use for them."
  • 1.0 to 1.9 (Abysmal): "The absolute worst of the worst."
  • 0.1 to 0.9 (Worthless): "Okay, so we lied....We think of them as sewage in a box."
  • 0.0 (WTF?): "Run far, far away and never look back."

Other sections

In 2000, purchased an E-federation called the Internet Wrestling Organization (IWO).[16] Since Snowball owned both IWO and IGN, IWO would go on to become IGN's first official E-Fed, even doing a column on the website. IGN For Men: This section closed down officially on October 2, 2001. It is no longer updated. IGN has sites such as IGN Stars and that fulfill much of the function of the old IGN ForMen site. IGN Wrestling met its end in early 2002, when many of the staff departed. Interviews with professional wrestling personalities and coverage of wrestling games has been folded into IGN Sports, currently headed by Jon Robinson. IGN Sci-Fi: Largely dead since 2002, this section of the site included movie news, comic book reviews, anime coverage, and other associated items. It has since been discontinued. The site, now redirects to the recently created which covers some of the content of the old SciFi site.

In 2002, IGN launched a dedicated videogame FAQs site specifically designed to host user-submitted guides.[17] This was launched following the cancellation of affiliation with GameFAQs.[18] In 2004, IGN launched GameStats, which serves as a more unbiased rating network, as it takes in every corporately owned game rating site, and averages it all into one score to give a general idea of the quality of a game. IGN also launched in 2004. Its primary focus is selling digital downloads of full PC and Mac video games, as well as anime, comics and game guides. In 2005, IGN launched their comics site. It is devoted to not just the staple Marvel and DC titles, but also manga, graphic novels, statues and toys.

In 2006, IGN launched their television site. It provides interviews with various television celebrities in addition to a TV schedule, TV trivia, and TV news. Akin IGN FilmForce, IGN's TV section has a variety of exclusive clips from upcoming television shows. In 2006, IGN launched regional versions of the site based in the UK and Australia, which both share the same information as the American site but with added content authored from editors within each respective region. When visiting from either the UK or Australia, the site automatically redirects you to your localised version using geolocation software. Each version of the site has a modified logo with the UK, Australian or American flags beneath the IGN symbol. On May 30, 2006, IGN Dreamcast was restarted, however, none of the Dreamcast updates were posted on main IGN webpage.

In 2007, IGN launched their anime site. It provided features on anime and manga including trailers and free episodes. It also included reviews of manga and anime from other section of IGN, such as IGN Comics and IGN DVD. The anime channel was dropped after IGN redesigned the site. In 2008, IGN launched their Retro channel to mark IGN's 10th anniversary.[19] To coincide with the release of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, IGN created Super Smash Bros World Site. On the site people can submit their user created stages from the game and download ones made by other people. IGN subsequently launched a similar website called GTA 'Hood on April 29, 2008 for Grand Theft Auto IV.


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