Blizzard Entertainment set a new record with the Diablo Immortal Metacritic user score of 0.2/10. To be fair, review aggregator websites like Metacritic are not the ultimate authority on how good a game is. But some games receive an overwhelming response from users in the form of review bombs. And that can be a decent indicator that the developer(s)/publisher(s) did something well or (more likely) messed something up in the eyes of fans.
In the case of Diablo Immortal, the overwhelming response indicates Blizzard Entertainment straight f*cked up.
VSG made note of the Diablo Immortal Metacritic user score a few days ago. Because it hit rock bottom with a score of 0.2. This review bomb set the record for the lowest user score of all time. But if you’re worried about Blizzard, you’ll be happy to know the Diablo Immortal Metacritic user score has since rebounded.
To a whopping 0.3.
This gives Diablo Immortal the title of second-lowest user score in the history of Metacritic.
So things are looking up for Blizzard.
Their last great disaster, Warcraft III: Reforged, is currently sitting at 0.6. At least Diablo Immortal has a friend at the bottom.
What do the Diablo Immortal Metacritic scores mean anyway?
As stated previously, review aggregator sites are not the final determiner of whether or not a game is good. But I do trust them to tell me a few things.
For example, let’s say a company released a hyped game and the Metascore (determined by critics/media) is overwhelmingly positive and the User Score is overwhelmingly negative. That’s a clear conflict in perception or controversy. Why would critics universally praise a game while a huge number of customers hate it?
In the age of review bombing, it could be a number of things. Epic Games triggered many review bombs when they were buying up games for timed exclusives on the Epic Games Store. Users review bombed The Last of Us Part 2 after someone leaked plot points without context.
And in the age of microtransactions, developers and publishers have pulled some shady a$$ sh*t. Game companies have released games with little to no microtransactions to get the game through the initial review period. Then, once the bulk of reviews are out and a large number of customers own the game, the microtransactions are implemented in full force.
But what about Diablo Immortal?
In the case of Diablo Immortal, the critic Metascore is currently 63/100. This is a result of one positive review and six mixed reviews.
As of this writing, the most positive review by critics is 85/100 by XboxEra. The excerpt on Metacritic reads, “The good news is that you can enjoy the hell out of this game without spending a penny, but if you’re either prone to MTX-it is or really care about PVP it wildly throws off the endgame balance.”
The lowest review by critics is 50/100 by But Why Tho? and the excerpt reads:
“For most of my time with Diablo Immortal, I was pleasantly surprised. But when I reached the endgame content it became clear that all of that was to trap me in an exploitative revenue scheme. I would have been more than willing to buy a battle pass here and there or even some cosmetics or expansions to support Diablo Immortal into the future, but its bold and scummy approach to manipulating vulnerable players not only soured my entire experience with the game but marks a dangerous cornerstone in the monetization of similar products in the future.”
Reviews across the spectrum touch on monetization as a problem. And they specifically mention it in the endgame. But they also make a note that the gameplay loop is enjoyable.
That’s one of the primary reasons for review bombing this game. Fans are telling Blizzard it doesn’t matter if the game is fun or not if you’re going to make the monetization so scummy.
Diablo Immortal Metacritic User Reviews
And when it comes to the user reviews, we have some gems rating the game 0/10.
There are more than 1700 negative user reviews and 38 positive user reviews. Many of the negative reviews express similar thoughts about the monetization in Diablo Immortal.
So is a user score of 0.2/10 warranted?
In this case, I think it is. Customers don’t have many channels to effectively communicate their feelings about games to the developers in ways they know they’ll be heard. The numbers have historically shown that review bombing doesn’t affect sales.
But it’s undeniable that developers and publishers see the mushroom clouds of outrage. Developers and publishers have responded to review bombs by making changes. The Star Wars Battlefront 2 loot box disaster was one of the more memorable examples.
Fans understandably believe they won’t get their message across if they’re “fair & balanced” in their reactions to a game. If you’re not extreme on the internet, it’s much harder to get people to pay attention. Especially when you’ve already given those people your money.
In this case, it’s obvious from critics and users that no one wants monetization like this anywhere near their beloved Diablo franchise. The gameplay loop of Diablo Immortal might be fun, but that doesn’t negate the predatory monetization. And the Diablo Immortal Metacritic user score reflects that.
Multiple representatives from Blizzard Entertainment are trying to calm concerned fans with statements that monetization in Diablo IV will be limited to cosmetics and paid expansions.
So it’s obvious they know how people feel.
But if microtransaction sales in Diablo Immortal make the board of Activision Blizzard salivate enough, it won’t matter what statements Blizzard developers make.