Overwatch 2 director acknowledges negative Steam reviews, proceeds to ignore them

Overwatch 2 director acknowledges negative Steam reviews, proceeds to ignore them

Overwatch 2’s recent Steam debut has made PC gaming history, but probably not in the way its developers intended. With over 20,000 largely negative reviews stacking up within the first day, which show no signs of stopping, OW2 has rapidly become Steam’s worst-rated game in the platform’s twenty-year history, and after more than a week of being put on blast, game director Aaron Keller has put out an official statement acknowledging the overwhelming negativity.

The majority of complaints from players are levied at the game’s monetization scheme, which has become far more pervasive after OW2’s shift to a free-to-play model. Blizzard has never been one to shy away from microtransactions—one need only take a cursory look at World of Warcraft to verify this—but OW2 introducing them retroactively, blocking off ways to obtain cosmetics for free, and even going so far as to lock core gameplay-affecting content like heroes behind separate purchases has drawn the ire of fans in droves. 

Although OW2’s monetization is the main topic of discussion, players are touching on everything from the unceremonious cancellation of the promised PvE campaign (the devs’ entire justification for a sequel to begin with) to the balancing, and the outcry has evidently gotten too loud for Blizzard to ignore.

Related: Overwatch 2 Invasion Bundle review: Is it worth the money?

Keller’s statement largely consists of recaps covering the latest additions to the game and asserts that the devs have “heard from many of our core players that the game is in the best state it’s ever been.” This reiteration that they’ve been getting positive feedback as well crops up a few times throughout the statement, but there’s little of that to be seen on public forums.

Towards the end, the canned PvE mode is mentioned as “an ambitious project that we ultimately couldn’t deliver” and correctly pointed out as one of players’ “primary reasons for dissatisfaction with the game.” Rather than truly address the recent wave of negative sentiment, however, Keller glosses right over it, instead resolving to keep moving forward—essentially, pledging to keep doing what they’ve been doing, critics be damned. 

It’s a disappointing response for many, but also the only realistic one. Negative reviews or not, Overwatch 2 is still making money hand over fist, and the developers are naturally going to play into any strategy that keeps that going. What lies in the game’s future is anyone’s guess, but one thing is clear: it’s going to be the developers, not the players, who decide it. 

About the author

Grant St. Clair

Grant St. Clair has been gaming almost as long as he’s been writing. He has very many opinions to share with you, mostly about the way armor balancing works in- wait, where are you going?

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