Horizon Forbidden West introduced its Burning Shores story expansion DLC earlier this month to praise from critics for its gameplay additions. However, an influx of hostile user reviews over a part of the narrative has led to Metacritic promising to implement stricter moderation for reviews on the site.
*Spoilers for Burning Shores*
At the end of the DLC, players are given the option to engage in a romance with female hero Seyka, a pivotal new character. If selected, the franchise’s protagonist, Aloy, will kiss Seyka.
This decision was the cause of many negative reviews for the title, with many players condemning developer Guerrilla’s decision to allow for same-sex romance in the game.
Horizon Forbidden West currently sits at a 3.9 user score on Metacritic, with the rating having gone as low as 2.7 despite critical acclaim.
One review reads, “Sony went too far in cramming the extremist agenda into its games and we as players will not accept that.” Another says, “Understand, when a person turns on the video game they don’t want to be participating in cheap and poorly done activism.”
In response to the behaviour, Metacritic told Eurogamer that they are aware of the “abusive and disrespectful reviews of Horizon Forbidden West Burning Shores.” They also claimed that they are evolving tools and processes to introduce stricter moderation in the coming months.
One reviewer pointed out that Metacritic had deleted their previous reviews, saying, “3 times now Metacritic has deleted my honest review – talk about censorship! The average user review was at 3, and now it’s 3,8 because Metacritic is deleting all the negative reviews.”
This is a process that Metacritic itself stated it has been doing, saying that “Our team reviews each and every report of abuse (including but not limited to racist, sexist, homophobic, insults to other users, etc.) and if violations occur, the reviews are removed.”
In other news, Guerrilla Games is currently working on an online Horizon project and “epic solo adventures” featuring protagonist Aloy.
Image credit: PlayStation
Source: Metacritic Via: Video Games Chronicle