I mused recently over how reading and playing a game often bring quite different overall impressions of the game for me. I have said a few times that I intend to stick to writing reviews only when I’ve both read and played the game. I also saw a few threads recently where people asked whether “capsule reviews” (based only on reading the game) have their place or whether only playtest reviews matter.
I believe a good capsule review is very useful, and no, I don’t think you have to play an entire campaign — or even a single episode — of a game to be able to write a useful review. The main reason I want to stick to playtest reviews now is so I can wrap myself in righteousness, thank you very much. So I’m in a position to say, “Yes, fanboy, I do know what the hell I’m talking about.” I’m a very special breed of chicken.