Steam is updating its review system in order to combat developers inflating the review scores of their games.
This change follows pervasive issues surrounding the review system on Steam, which has been historically abused and misused by developers and users alike.
Steam reviews have been completely overhauled, adding a more user-friendly filtering menu and presenting scores which reflect the measure of the game more accurately than before.
Users who activate a Steam product using a Steam key will still be able to write a review on the game, but their score will not count towards the overall review score of the game.
This change has been implemented in order to combat issues such as developer abuse, as developers can receive these Steam keys for free, creating the opportunity for review score inflation.
According to the Steam news post, this type of abuse is usually obvious.
“An analysis of games across Steam shows that at least 160 titles have a substantially greater percentage of positive reviews by users that activated the product with a cd key, compared to customers that purchased the game directly on Steam.”
Many Steam users rely on the review system to determine the value of a game, and Valve is focussed on creating an effective system that is immune to abuse.