Reviewing games on Steam is a big part of the digital storefront, but now it’s getting a little tougher to blast a game for reasons other than quality.
How do you feel about Borderlands 3 going to the Epic Games Store as a timed exclusive? I’m honestly not wild about it, considering Epic’s shop isn’t all that great and doesn’t offer many of the features that Valve’s Steam does.
What it does do though, is apparently vastly outpace Valve in being publisher-friendly. I’m no expert on the subject, but it’s been floating around for while that Epic’s rates are better than Valve’s. It certainly explains the steady stream of big games going exclusively Epic.
As a response to all of this, some fans took to Steam’s review feature on the listings for other games in the Borderlands series. They then blasted away at series developer Gearbox and publisher 2K. The anger is understandable as a gamer, and it’s also nothing new. Mass blasting of games with non-reviews is actually called review bombing. Basically it just serves to drag down a score.
Obviously though, doing that is decidedly off-topic, considering that the review feature is for… reviews. It’s not meant for commentary on corporate decisions. Though honestly, there should probably be a feature for that as well.
So with all that in mind, it’s easy to see why the Borderlands games posted to Steam have become the first beneficiaries of the store’s anti-review bombing system. Just put into effect last month, the system effectively alerts human employees of Valve as to possible mass fake reviews. It’s then up to them to take action.
According to industry site MCV, the Borderlands games have seen some 4000 reviews deleted. There’s some talk that both negative and positive “reviews” were caught up in the action, though deleted positives could’ve theoretically been off-topic as well. I’m sure Gearbox had a few defenders joining in.
In any event, this all shakes out to the fact that it’s going to be a little tougher for fans to blast games on Steam from now on. Well, it will for reasons other than that they’re bad any way. And that’s probably a good thing overall.