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Weekly Poll: Winning You Over

Weekly Poll for 9-24-2012Most of you find level grinding to be a tolerable part of the video gaming experience.  I find that it depends on how much of the actual game has been a chore up to the point of needing to grind.  Lately I've been playing both Borderlands games and the games of the Ratchet & Clank Collection and all of these titles require some form of grinding (experience points, currency, etc.) at some point during the experience.  I find that I don't mind the Borderlands grinding so much because there's always something more to do on Pandora, so nothing ever really feels like repeated content.  Ratchet, on the other hand, runs out of objectives before I've earned enough bolts to buy the best weapons (and armor, where applicable), so I end up running though completed levels over and over and over again, and over time there's diminishing returns on how many bolts those levels pay out, and it's not long before I'm ready to move on to something else.  I love those older Ratchet games, but I'd forgotten how much of a grind they could be towards the end of each one.

Speaking of new games, with so many new releases reaching stores and download networks, I have to ask about how you decide which games to buy.  What is most influential when it comes to deciding which games to pick up?  Are you swayed by advertisements?  Reviews?  Discussions in person or online?  Or do you need a proper hands-on experience with a demo or rental before making up your mind?  Let's hear your thoughts.