Valve Promises To Nuke Review Bombs

It’s safe to say that (outside of the revenue share) one of the best promises that Epic Games has made to potential games is the option to avoid a phenomenon that is becoming more and more prevalent on Steam and the internet as a whole: Review bombs. A review bomb, for those living in bomb-proof shelters, involves large numbers of people leaving negative reviews for a game. In the last few years, this has ranged from insertion of DRM, something stupid said by a community manager, the developer entering a publishing deal, an anti-China joke, bad updates, etc.

Valve, in their consistent refusal to deal with community issues, has remained silent on the problem of review bombs. They have instituted what amounted to a bandage in the form of a graphical chart where customers can see if the negative reviews are consolidated to a very short time span.

In a blog post released this morning, Valve has announced that the company will revisit user reviews starting with off-topic review bombs. According to the post, once Valve identifies a review bomb, it will mark the time period and remove those scores from the review score calculation. The reviews will not be deleted. If your review is caught in that time frame, unfortunately you are out of luck as well as the system does not go into each individual review to curate them.

“Once our team has identified that the anomalous activity is an off-topic review bomb, we’ll mark the time period it encompasses and notify the developer. The reviews within that time period will then be removed from the Review Score calculation. As before, the reviews themselves are left untouched – if you want to dig into them to see if they’re relevant to you, you’ll still be able to do so. To help you do that, we’ve made it clear when you’re looking at a store page where we’ve removed some reviews by default, and we’ve further improved the UI around anomalous review periods.”

Source: Steam

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