When Shadow of the Tomb Raider released last month, fans were fairly split on the game. Our own review felt like the game wasn’t entirely fulfilling its potential, but user reviews on digital distribution service Steam were in the “positive” range, which means that 70% of reviewers were high on the game. Now that positive has fallen after the Steam community has become upset that a sale price for the game that owners feel is premature.
The game released on September 14 and got a 34% discount on Steam on October 16. Since that date, 66% of the game’s reviews have been negative, most not mentioning anything actually good or bad about the game. The reviews mention that the game released a month prior and people who pre-ordered paid more than people who waited a month.
“one month -34%!!! OMG” read one review.
“just a month, and 50% off, what the hell?” reads another.
“Discount a month after the game, the normal course Square Enix :DDDDD Thank you, now your games will be bought only 99% discount,” says a review written on shortly after the sale went live. “As for the game itself, I can say that it is neither better nor worse than the previous parts. I liked it,” the reviewer writes before delving into spoiler territory.
Many of the negative reviews mention differing percentages for the price, though it is not clear why. Checking different regions does not appear to indicate that any SKU of the game exceeded the 34% discount advertised by Steam.
For its part, Steam filters reviews to designate between helpful and unhelpful, so clicking the actual text of a review is supposed to lead potential purchasers to conclude that the game is being reviewed en masse for reasons other than game quality. That said, it does not surface this until you click through to the reviews, so all most people will see is the brown-text “Mixed” reviews on the store page.
Of course, there are still people with legitimate complaints in the reviews, ranging from audio bugs to disagreement with where Eidos Montreal took the third game in the series after Crystal Dynamics worked on the previous two. These reviews are thrown in with the other negative reviews as Steam’s algorithm does not distinguish between the types of negative reviews.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s first DLC, the Forge, releases on November 13.