Epic Games Store wants to combat review bombing; Devs can “opt-in” to reviews

After the Metro Exodus review bombing on Steam, Epic Games has taken that into consideration and will update their store to combat the same fate.

Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney says that they’re not silencing anyone. The current review system on the Epic DRM is based on the Unreal Engine marketplace with devs able to opt-in. Gamers accused Epic of silencing customers over the whole Metro Exodus “scandal” with the game being removed from Steam and now only available on Epic Games Store when it was previously available on Steam. Thus, they’ve decided that the review system is under the dev’s decision.

Sweeney was called out and explained on Twitter that they’re doing what they do with their marketplace because “review bombing and other gaming-the-system is a real problem.” But he’s denying any say that they’re silencing customers.

Steam users have grabbed their pitchforks and review bombed the other Metro titles (2033 Redux and Last Light) with negative reviews venting their frustrations. Steam does have a “recently negative reviews” spike alert, but this doesn’t help and still brings down the overall sentiment of the games.

The Epic Games Store went live last month and has tried to get more devs releasing game son there with a more generous revenue split compared to Steam. Sweeney says:

“It’s up to you guys to decide what’s anti-consumer, but our aim with the Epic Games store is to be very pro-competitive. In other words, to compete as a store and encourage healthy competition between stores,”

“When lots of stores compete, the result is a combination of better prices for you, better deals for developers, and more investment in new content and innovation. These exclusives don’t come to stores for free; they’re a result of some combination of marketing commitments, development funding, or revenue guarantees. This all helps developers.”

“For users, I get that it’s yet another launcher and if you have Steam installed you’d prefer to just use it. But if you want way better games to be built in the future, then please recognize what good this store can do.

“Steam takes 30% and Epic takes 12%. That’s an 18% difference, and most devs make WAY less than an 18% profit margin – so this can be the difference between being able to fund a new game and going bankrupt!”

Sweeney also believes that competition and multiple stores are necessary for a healthy ecosystem and many developers have been “super enthusiastic” about Epic’s position on the matter. They still don’t rule out Discord’s split at 90/10 in the future, but Epic has been making waves with their free game every two weeks promo. And now this. They’re getting plenty of press and publicity. Any publicity is good publicity, right?

Eugene Schmidt

Eugene Schmidt

Freelance journalist and part-time gamer. I specialize in indie games as I think they don't get the attention they deserve. I'm just your typical consumer who has some opinions to share. I've been reviewing games since I was 12. I started out reviewing them with friends on old forums that now no longer exist. Then I went to online VoDs, which I've lost interest in. And now I'm here to deliver my thoughts in written format!

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