Melody Maker's Barry McIlheney hailed Some Great Reward and noted a "truly remarkable development" in Dave Gahan's voice, concluding that while "[i]t used to be okay to slag this bunch off because of their lack of soul, their supposed synthetic appeal, their reluctance to really pack a punch", the album "just trashes such bad old talk into the ground and demands that you now sit up and take notice of what is happening here, right under your nose".
New Musical Express critic David Quantick was critical of the sound of the record, and felt that it "suffers from too many missed grips on good ideas". He continues: "It ought to be an intelligent chart contender, a mix of commercial class and magpie manipulation of the unconventional; it isn't. When that bonk and clatter is used... it's just a nod to left-field, rather than use of the sound." Of the songs and singing he says: "Often the tunes are ordinary; Martin Gore, as ever, favours a bit of a drone. In small doses (singles) this is fine. Over 40 minutes, the interest begins to wane. Dave Gahan's voice has improved greatly – in that he's learned how to use its limited range – but like the melodies, it imparts mucho sameiness to the record." He concludes: "Depeche Mode can be one the few acts worthy of the name pop group. It's just that they should be so much better."
In No. 1, Sunie expressed similar reservations: "The sadly under-rated Depeches turn out consistently excellent singles. But 45s rather than LPs remain their forte [...] They've progressed a million musical miles from their boppy origins, but Martin Gore's lyrics haven't kept up. Over a whole LP, their gaucheness is a major distraction from the record's musical merits."
Carole Linfield, in Sounds, felt the balance of powerful music and personal lyrics was just right: "The combination of the Depeche strength of vocal and now the Depeche delicacy is going to be hard to beat... This package is a carefully assorted, daintily arranged symphony ... one that carries emotion, devotion and yet never gives way to feebleness or predictability. OK... the lyrics look trite, often naïve and frequently cliched when printed out [...] Yet Depeche have the right balance and necessary gauche to pull it off. Perhaps it's simply that power – never mawkish – that sustains it. Whichever way, the combination locks in. The Depeche Mode clicks."
In 2006, Some Great Reward was re-released with a bonus DVD. The CD was remastered and was released on a CD/SACD hybrid. The bonus DVD includes the B-sides "In Your Memory" and "(Set Me Free) Remotivate Me" in addition to a remix of "Somebody" and several live versions of some of the songs from the album. The DVD also includes a documentary on the making of the album.
The remastered album was released on vinyl in March 2007.