Metacritic’s New Delayed Rating System Curbs Review-Bombing Culture For New Games

If someone were to try and input their personal rating for a new game that just came out in the past week on Metacritic, chances are that they probably would’ve seen the following on the game’s page (via The Verge):

The rating website has recently updated its rating system to implement a waiting period of 36 hours before users can leave their score on recently-launched games. The image above shows a prompt for players to “Please spend some time playing the game”, blocking any user reviews to be published before the stipulated timing.

“We recently implemented the 36 hour waiting period for all user reviews in our games section to ensure our gamers have time to play these games before writing their reviews,” a Metacritic spokesperson told its sister site, Gamespot. “This new waiting period for user reviews has been rolled out across Metacritic’s Games section and was based on data-driven research and with the input of critics and industry experts.”

Despite the decision not apparently based on the review outcome of any one game, it is worth noting that this updated system came out not long after Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us Part II, in particular, was review-bombed at release, after details of its plot were leaked before the game’s actual launch.

Moving forward, review pages for new games have been closed off to prevent more review bombings from taking place, including the likes of Ghost of Tsushima and Paper Mario: The Origami King over last weekend.

Aside from Metatritic, Steam has also stepped up its efforts to expose and hopefully prevent review-bombing from affecting the overall ratings for games back in 2017 by adding a bar graph to showcase review scores from the time the game has been launched.

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