GameViewStudios has compiled a list of the the 10 largest video game websites based upon the number of monthly visitors and Compete, Quantcast, and Alexa ranks. Who knows – maybe someday GameViewStudios will make this list!
1 – IGN
IGN focuses on video games, films, music and other media. IGN’s main website comprises several specialty sites or “channels”, each occupying a subdomain and covering a specific area of entertainment; including major video game platforms, and other forms of entertainment such as television, comic books, and films. IGN is the flagship property of IGN Entertainment, which owns several other websites oriented towards male interests and gaming, such as GameStats, VE3D, TeamXbox, Vault Network, and AskMen. Created in September 1996 as the Imagine Games Network, IGN was founded by publishing executive Jonathan Simpson-Bint and began as five individual websites within Imagine Media: N64.com (later renamed ign64.com), PSXPower, Saturnworld, Next-Generation.com and Ultra Game Players Online.
2 – GameFAQs
GameFAQs hosts video game FAQs and walkthroughs. The site has a database of video game information, cheat codes, reviews, game saves, box art images and screenshots, almost all of which is submitted by volunteer contributors. The systems covered include the 8-bit Atari platform through modern consoles, as well as computer games. Submissions made to the site are reviewed by the site’s current editor, Allen “SBAllen” Tyner. GameFAQs hosts an active message board community, which has a separate discussion board for each game in the site’s database, along with a variety of other boards.
GameFAQs was created in November 1995 by Jeff Veasey and was bought by CNET Networks in May 2003. It is currently owned by CBS Interactive. From 2004 till 2012, most of the game-specific boards were shared between GameFAQs and GameSpot, another CBS Interactive website. The site also runs a daily opinion poll and tournament contests, as well as an annual Character Battle.
3 – GameSpot
GameSpot provides news, reviews, previews, downloads, and other information on certain video games. In addition to the information produced by GameSpot staff, the site also allows users to write their own reviews, blogs, and post on the site’s forums. GameSpot’s main page has links to the latest news, reviews, previews, and portals for Nintendo (Wii U and Nintendo 3DS), Xbox (Xbox 360 and Xbox One), PlayStation (PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4), and PC games. It also includes a search engine for users to track down games of interest.
In September 2009, GameSpot started reviewing and cataloging iPhone, Android, and other mobile games. GameSpot has also covered the following platforms in past years: Nintendo 64, Nintendo GameCube, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Xbox, PlayStation, PlayStation 2, Sega Saturn, Dreamcast, Neo Geo Pocket Color, and N-Gage, among others. The site was launched on May 1, 1996, created by Pete Deemer, Vince Broady and Jon Epstein. It was purchased by ZDNet, a brand which was later purchased by CNET Networks. CBS Interactive, which purchased CNET Networks in 2008, is the current owner of GameSpot.
4 – Kotaku
Kotaku is part of Gawker Media’s “Gawker” network of sites. Kotaku was first launched in October 2004, and since then, the site has launched several country-specific sites for Australia, Japan, and Brazil. The site has made CNET’s “Blog 100” list and was ranked 50th on PC Magazine’s “Top 100 Classic Web Sites” list. In 2009, Business Insider reported that Hearst Corporation sought to buy Kotaku from Gawker Media. In 2013, Forbes criticized Kotaku over what they called an inflammatory headline in a story about Hideki Kamiya; Kotaku rewrote the headline. Hardcore Gamer has also criticized Kotaku’s inflammatory and sensationalistic headlines.
5 – GameFront
GameFront provides patches, demos, modifications, and other user generated game related content to users in selected countries. As of 17 December 2013 GameFront is currently one of the 7,000 highest-trafficked websites according to Alexa. The main focus of GameFront is to provide a download service to its users. GameFront provides gaming-related news and articles. The news and articles were provided by Computer Gaming World, a sister-site and offspring from Ziff Davis Media.
6 – N4G
N4G, “News for Gamers”, is a community-supported video game news site. User members search the net for the most interesting opinion pieces, news items and articles with hundreds submitted by N4G contributors each day. The most top news pieces feature on the N4G homepage where they are rated by a temperature score reflecting the popularity of each story. N4G also keeps track of video game review scores from other sites, and combines them to present an average rating for each game.
7 – CheatCC
Cheat Code Central is primarily known for its extensive list of cheat codes. Cheat Code Central, also known as CCC and CheatCC, offers previews, reviews, news, and various articles on the gaming industry. Cheat Code Central posts exclusive content written by numerous freelance writers. Writers are paid on a per article basis, though they are required to write a minimum amount of trial articles for free in order to prove their skills. CheatCC previews and reviews the newest games entering the video game market. The overall score of the game is based on graphics, controls, music, sound effects, voice acting, and play value.
8 – GameTrailers
GameTrailers provides free access to original programming (such as reviews and previews), game trailers and recorded game play. Along with standard definition, many of the video clips are offered in a higher resolution. Users can upload videos, create blogs, and participate in forums. On the past version of GameTrailers users could join and create factions, which had their own private forums. Factions were cut when the website was revamped, along with the GTD currency system, as well as forum levels.
9 – GiantBomb
Giant Bomb is a website and wiki that includes gaming news, reviews, commentary, and video, created by former GameSpot editors Jeff Gerstmann and Ryan Davis in collaboration with Whiskey Media. Content on Giant Bomb is split between its small staff providing written articles and videos in a video game journalism editorial capacity and its community expanding upon it by creating and interacting with the website’s socially progressive tools and functions, namely a video game wiki-database, open to editing by all registered users in which they create content, and a Quest system in which they then earn points in a social gaming element. The Giant Bomb staff reports on video game news and reviews new releases. Their weekly podcast, the Giant Bombcast, is posted on Tuesdays and covers recent news and releases in the video game industry, as well as happenings around the office. Giant Bomb produces a number of regular video series.
10 – PCGamer
PC Gamer is a magazine founded in Britain in 1993 devoted to PC gaming and published monthly by Future plc. The magazine has several regional editions, with the UK and US editions becoming the best selling PC games magazines in their respective countries. The magazine features news on developments in the video game industry, previews of new games, and reviews of the latest popular PC games, along with other features relating to hardware, mods, “classic” games and various other topics.