Wrath of the Fans: Diablo III Metacritic User Review Score Plummets

If you want to have a good argument with someone on the Internet today comment on this story, for starters, because for as much as there is love for Diablo III today there's is an equal amount of hate. Some people who have strong opinions on Blizzard’s latest release, have decided to take it to the company by way of Metacritic where they are giving it some pretty lousy user reviews. We won't argue the merits for or against that practice by the game community, but it's certainly having an effect on Diablo III's overall Metacritic user score.

Anyone that has tried to play Diablo III in the last day-and-a-half understands the frustration of fans that simply wanted to play the game but could not log in. If Diablo III didn't require you to be always logged in to Battle.net in order to play many of the complaints Blizzard is having to deal with would go away.

So how far down the rabbit hole has Diablo III's Metacritic score gone as a result of bad user reviews? Well, nearly 2000 user reviews have been submitted and about half of them are very negative. The biggest complaints in the negative reviews don't have to do with the gameplay – they all hate the always connected requirement of the game and connectivity issues. Those complaints have been enough to give Diablo III an average user score of 3.6.

Chances are that Metacritic will eventually step in to quell the uprising as they have done in the past for other games that suddenly and swiftly get the user score wrath of the community…

Source: C&VG

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditEmail this to someone


  1. eston says:

    DRM aside, I would think that Blizzard could at least have the servers working on the release day. I mean come on, how long have they been doing this online gaming thing? They're pretty much the last company I would expect to have logon issues on the first day their new blockbuster is out.

  2. Flamespeak says:

    Personally, I feel the score is about right. D3 is a pretty basic dungeon crawler, the speed of the previous titles has been toned down (even D1 ran faster), cooldowns for abilities and spells is ridiculous in a game that mobs you, and, well, for a game with the resources available to it and for how long it was being made, it just doesn't look/feel/sound as polished as it should be.

    I honestly had more fun with Dungeon Hunter Alliance on the PS3. 

  3. kagirinai says:

    I will be shocked if by the end of this week, there is ever another problem with Blizzard's servers for D3. They did their due diligence with the beta stress testing, and it's unfortunate that it wasn't enough, but it's also completely unreasonable to imply that they're evil, or that they've made a foolishing choice because of launch window connection issues.

    As for ISP issues, I have to ask — how is that any more Blizzard's fault than yours? Maybe things are different where you are, but I'd have to believe you're in the minority. I haven't had any internet outages for maybe ten years. Is Blizzard responsible for your graphics card too? Keyboard and mouse? What about if your harddrive fails? Where does your responsibility start and theirs end?

    Again, they've been quite clear on the game's requirements. I don't see how it's any more Blizzard's responsibility to let you play without an internet connection than it is to let you play without sufficient RAM or Disk space. They COULD have designed it for Windows 95 — maybe they're being unreasonable for not supporting NT, too?

  4. kagirinai says:

    Well, considering that said 'Bill of Rights' isn't a recognized legal document, it's essentially irrelevant. Blizzard has one concern here: making the game experience the best it can be.

    Now, while I understand that you might not be able to enjoy the game because you have a bad internet connection, the reality is that MOST people who want the game are so hopped up on internet that the think Wikipedia is their local library. Broadband is fairly cheap and very available, but unfortunately, some people are going to be in the few areas where high speed internet hasn't fully proliferated yet, but they are a minority.

    In fact, I'd guess that the majority of people complaining about the internet connection requirement either don't actually have a problem (and just feel that they are justified in complaining), or have awful network setups (like wireless in a concrete apartment) that they could cheaply and easily resolve, but just don't want to. (And then there's probably people stealing internet from their neighbors and don't get a good enough signal to rely on it; in which case, get your own connect.)

    More importantly, Blizzard has been absolutely clear that the game requires an internet connection. Complaining about this is akin to me complaining that Halo doesn't run on my PS3; of course it doesn't.

    By keeping the game content online, Blizzard is better capable of managing cheating and exploitation. If you don't remember, people used to sell D2 characters online, and there were all sorts of hacks and workarounds. And while many of those issues didn't effect the offline players, it did affect some online players. D3 is designed with more online features that are more deeply integrated in to the game, and more players are taking their experience online these day; if Blizzard didn't take measures to ensure that the online experience was kept fair and safe, they'd be shooting themselves in the foot.

  5. Farseli says:

    Well, for someone like me that can't play because of unstable internet conditions, that means the game rates as a 0. As a staunch supporter of the Stardock Gamer Bill of Rights, this game is an obvious violation of the 9th admendment on it.

    9. Gamers shall have the right to play single player games without having to have an Internet

  6. kagirinai says:

    If I understand the game correctly, you can move single player items and characters in to online play seamlessly. Which means they are concerned about players exploiting the single player functionality and which will affect the multiplayer gamers. Since the assumption is that most of the players will play online, this is a major concern.

    The best you could hope for, in terms of offline single-player is a completely sandboxed singleplayer, which has no connection to any of the online features, which would likely include achievements and player migration, and may even have to limit DLC down the line.

    Ultimately, however, you are entitled to not buy the game, and to give up on games entirely. That's your call. If enough people agree with you, then things will change. However it sounds more like you're pissed with your internet provider and because your don't understand Blizzards decisions, you're taking out your anger on them instead. Maybe you should spend your energy complaining to your ISP, or possibly to your government over ISP business practices; you'll probably be happier in the long run.

  7. GrimCW says:

    then why not nip the SP mode entirely and make it an MMO?

    no, its not an "online game" its a game they wanted to maintain 100% control over by forcing cloud use and attempting to push the industry down a very dark alley. This is by far no different than Ubi's attempt at the whole always on DRM.

    if this sort of thing catches on i'll actually willingly give up on gaming, because i will not support cloud gaming if i can't play it when and where i want without having to drag around a LAN connection or pay outrageous fees to some craptastic phone/cable company just so i can play.


    but what you said just described the ever so bad OnLive service, where your net connection depicts how good/bad your game looks and plays.. all the more reason not to buy it.

  8. MechaCrash says:

    And yet, it has a single player mode. A single player mode which doesn't work when the servers go down, and it does this by design.

    The whys don't matter, what does matter is that this game is needlessly tethered to servers, and this stupid shitty system is keeping people from running the game at all.

  9. SeanB says:

    James, do you even understand why diablo 3 has this "always on drm" you keep referencing?

    Do you understand how this game was made? Do you know anything about what you are actually talking about?

    Diablo 3 does not just require you to log into battle.net to play, the game actually exists on battle.net. IT IS AN ONLINE GAME. The game files, the maps, everything besides the art and sound assets exist only online.

  10. hellfire7885 says:

    Yet is has single player that you can't play when the servers are down.


    And offline mode would have probably nipped this in the bud.

  11. SeanB says:

    You obviously know nothing about diablo 3. There will never be an offline patch, because the game is an online game, similar to an MMO. There cannot be an offline patch, there will only be a server emulator.

  12. Kajex says:

    I would've said Michael Pachter or John Edward. There's a distinct difference between being horribly inaccurate and lying outright to the medical community.

  13. Technogeek says:

    Why the hell does anyone think Metacritic user scores are worth the electrons consumed to transmit them to your monitor?

    A self-selected group with no consistent scoring methodology across the population…the only thing less accurate is Andrew Wakefield.

  14. MechaCrash says:

    If that isn't already available, it will be by the end of the month.

    It will not, however, be a…shall we say, "officially sanctioned" patch.

  15. GrimCW says:

    and thus is the inherant flaw in always on DRM and why i refuse to buy anything that uses it.

    actual online services aside (such as an MMO) for games that stay between me and a friend or just me.. its more trouble than its ever worth.

    let me know when they make the inevitable offline mode patch.

  16. kagirinai says:

    I think he was trying to tell you that the opinions of the loudest people aren't necessarily relevant. Just because the only thing you are hearing is complaints (or praise) doesn't mean that everything is awful (or perfect). Especially with something like Metacritic, you're unlikely to get people who are merely satisifed with the product, especially this early on when most players haven't enjoyed it much yet.

    As such, NO, there's nothing wrong with people having opinions beyond your own. But by the same extension, their opinions don't necessarily carry any weight, either.

  17. GoodRobotUs says:

    Thing is, these people have taken to time to post a review, and most of them are quite clear as to why they posted the low score. It doesn't mean that Metacritic is an accurate description of the quality of the game, but it could certainly be taken as a sample of the reception of the game.

    It can be argued that it's only a small, butthurt percentage that make the effort to review, there may be some truth to that, but if Metacritic do not like the numbers, then surely the best bet is to change the data collection system, not the numbers themselves?

    Basically, like all things in life, anyone who takes someone else's word for everything will end up paying the price, people wanting to review the quality of the game are probably best served by independent youTube reviews or knowing someone who owns it, but that doesn't really change the fact that people were angry enough with the difficulties involved that they felt the need to vote-bomb the product. It might not be the most accurate way of defining the game, but it really should be setting alarm-bells ringing with developers as to their current approach to DRM and how it is being received.

  18. Technogeek says:

    You said:

    Yes, because God forbid the score should actually reflect the opinion of those who feel strongly enough to rate it 😉

    That link was meant to point out why that's actually a terrible idea if you want anything accurate. I hate to bring up that old line about how everyone not complaining is having fun with the game, but in a situation like this, there's probably a good-sized number who are. I don't know how many, I'll admit, but that's kind of the point — you're looking at a self-selected sample of individuals who chose to complain, and acting as though it should be taken as representative of the customer base as a whole.

  19. GoodRobotUs says:

    What has this link got to do with anything? Is someone having an opinion that doesn't match your own selection-biased opinion so scary that you have to hold up a mirror without looking into it first?

    Is people having an opinion not allowed any more?

    In other words, if you disagree, debate, don't just post a pointless wiki link, that's not even a hint of trying.

  20. GoodRobotUs says:

    Yes, because God forbid the score should actually reflect the opinion of those who feel strongly enough to rate it 😉 You don't solve problems by pretending they don't exist.

    I think the attitude of 'guilty until proven innocent' that is prevalent in the game production industry is going to do a lot more harm before anything gets done about it.

  21. Technogeek says:

    Yes, and Skyrim can be beaten in less than two and a half. That doesn't mean you're actually experiencing it as a game.

  22. kagirinai says:

    I'm glad the score is so low.

    Clearly you're just glad that it reflects your own personal outrage.

    Comparing Diablo 3's always on DRM to manual passwords (which, I'm not sure if you are aware, was actually a thing in the 80s) is foolish; they're not even comparable.

    I understand — AND RESPECT — the fact that you might not LIKE the DRM, but it's frankly obvious that most gamers don't understand the implications of the DRM, and why it's problematic. They just know that it's (probably) unjustified and they want to rage about it.

    Yes, it's a bit silly that D3 lacks an offline mode; it's inviting the problems that Ubisoft has encountered with server hiccups, except that Blizzard has a much better grasp on handling massive online connections and it's unrealistic to expect any major issues after the launch window, based on their experience.

    More importantly, the more obvious reason they have for implementing the always-on DRM is to add stricter protections against exploitation, especially with the new marketplace (which, amusingly, is ALSO a stricter protection against exploitation). Shockingly, it was not done to spite you.


  23. Farseli says:

    So what that they warned us? Making a bad design choice and warning the users about said choice does not give you a free ride. It was a terrible design decision and the user reviews are reflecting that! If I made a game that required the entry of a password from different pages of an instruction manual every 30 minutes to keep playing that would be a terrible design decision. It should be expected of users to review that aspect of my product as well and have that be a part of the final opinion. The low user score reflects the user opinion and that is exactly what I expect it to do. I'm glad the score is so low.

  24. Mr.Tastix says:

    The majority of people on Metacritic are bitching about issues Blizzard already warned people of.

    But half of the issues could've been avoided if Blizzard hadn't kicked us in the balls with their pathetic "always on" DRM scheme. Didn't they see how poorly this worked for Ubisoft? I call bullshit on Morhaime's little speech about how they "never planned for this". DRM is not something you talk about in passing, it's something you discuss.

    Even Steam has a damn offline mode. Sure, it's a pain to use, but it's better than bloody nothing.

    But I will say this: If you're not prepared to speak with your wallet (meaning you don't buy games you don't like the DRM for) then honestly, your opinion means very little. I don't like the "always on" DRM scheme but ultimately, I sucked it up because I have accepted the fact that boycotts don't do shit anyway. The gaming community can't boycott something because they simply give in after a few months of protesting and buy the damn game anyway.

  25. Cattleprod says:

    I’ve seen objectively terrible games get a one instead of a zero based solely on the fact they were actually playable, thus meeting the absolute minimum standard to be considered games.

    If you can’t even get that far, you deserve all the negative reviews you get.

    Is there anyone who *didn’t* predict that this always on nonsense would render the single player game unplayable?

Comments are closed.