A recent job listing for a design manager at Irrational Games requires applicants to have experience working on a game that scored highly on Metacritic. How highly? The game must have an 85+ average.
"Credit on at least one game with an 85+ Average Meta Critic Review Score," a bullet point reads, coming in last under a short but strict list of requirements.
Publishers often use sites like Metacritic as a means of gauging a game's success, and that developers sometimes receive hefty bonuses based on these scores is a fairly well-known yet controversial fact. Many gamers have voiced their distaste for heavy reliance on scores, though most of the industry seems to prefer keeping quiet on the matter.
Using hard numbers to determine a game's worth is obviously flawed. Scores are a part of the review process, sure, but plenty of noteworthy titles fall short of Irrational's 85+ mark, including Fallout: New Vegas, Mirror's Edge, Catherine, Borderlands, Saints Row: The Third, Metro 2033, and so on (and on).
New Vegas is a particularly relevant example, having missed the 85 average and thus a bonus from Bethesda.