Yesterday, Reddit user Documental38 made a post rumoring that Harmonix employees could have possibly written and posted some reviews to their newly released game, Rock Band 4, on Amazon. In speaking to Destructoid, Harmonix has confirmed that some employees had indeed posted some positive reviews to the game.
Documental38, and then other Reddit users, noticed that some of the names attached to some of the reviews for Rock Band 4 on Amazon were exact matches to employees at Harmonix. Some sites, such as Destructoid, picked up on the rumor, reporting on it and asking Harmonix for comment.
Destructoid has now received word back from Harmonix, confirming that employees had posted some reviews to Amazon, but “we’ve asked that existing reviews be edited to identify Harmonix employees or be removed entirely.” This comes with a clarification in internal policy about employees posting reviews to their own products. Harmonix also added: “While we believe the reviews posted by a few employees were sincere and without ill intentions, as a studio we don’t believe these are appropriate actions.”
If you go back through and look at some of the suspected reviews, they have been updated to reflect that they came from an employee at Harmonix.
With hundreds of reviews across the various platforms, you’d have to wonder if they expected it to genuinely have any sort of profound effect. If this were some sort of malicious initiative from Harmonix higher ups, they would definitely have been much more sneaky about the way they approached it. In the end, the statement from Harmonix is likely true with it being the actions of a few employees. Though, I suppose if you’d like to stick to the idea that this was pushed by Harmonix from the top, you could argue the few employees caught were just dumb enough to use their personal accounts.
I don’t think so.