Sony is reversing the unpopular Helldivers 2 decision after strong player reaction

Step back, Helldivers. Your fight is won. Sony announced this at the end of last week Helldivers 2, one of the most popular multiplayer games of the year, would require Steam players to link their account to a PlayStation Network account. After a weekend of intense backlash from gamers, including reviews bombarding the game on Steam, Sony has reversed course this morning and will no longer require PC gamers to link a PSN account.

The strength of this player reaction cannot be underestimated. Within hours of the initial announcement Helldivers 2 received over 14,000 negative reviews on Steam. This number increased to over 200,000 negative reviews in the two days that followed, which was enough to turn the game’s rating from “mostly positive” to “mostly negative.” Although review bombing is usually viewed as an extreme action that players can take, it appears to have been encouraged by them one of Helldivers 2‘s Community Manager.

“I want people to voice their displeasure in a place where it could actually make a difference,” Spitz said Helldivers 2 Community manager wrote on the game’s Discord server. “Steam reviews and refund requests will do that.”

But the players weren’t content to simply follow Helldivers 2. Johan Pilestedt, CEO of Arrowhead Game Studios, expressed dismay that players were also targeting the original Hell diver. “It makes me deeply sad that @HelldiversGame is also facing a criticism bomb due to the recent @helldiverse2 Controversy,” he wrote on X.

The review bombing had a domino effect on the game’s presence on Steam. As the news spread, players and others pointed out that the PlayStation Network was not available in certain countries, meaning the requirement would result in players in those countries losing access to a game they paid for have. This was reported by the Steam tracker site Steamdb The game was delisted in 177 Countries where PSN was not available and there were reports from players that Steam was available Provide refunds to players beyond the typical refund window. Then Sony announced early Monday morning that it would be lifting the PSN linking requirement.

On social media, players asked how it all happened. Although PSN account linking was always planned for the game and stated on the Steam page, Pilestedt wrote that the unstable state of the game’s release forced them to postpone implementing the requirement. He also stated that there appeared to be internal discussions with PlayStation that the requirement would upset fans.

“When the servers exploded upon startup, quick decisions had to be made, such as disabling the link.” Pilestedt wrote about X“And now finally the request to reactivate PS came [PlayStation] (to help with moderation) – and we had to stick to it even though there was concern there would be backlash.”

Now that the decision has been overturned, Pilestedt expressed his gratitude for fans and thanked PlayStation for quickly resolving the matter. The game has been restored in the countries where it was previously removed and it seems like players are changing their negative reviews Helldivers 2 Now the rating is “mixed” as the number of positive reviews is slowly increasing. Pilestedt even poked fun at the entire event, sharing a graphic from a community member who turned the game’s negative Steam review into a graphic a design for the capes players wear in the game.

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