EA Ditches Online Passes for Future Games

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#101 Edited by Shaymarx (113 posts) -

Having been reliably informed that EA had apologised earlier this year to Game (UK) for their deliberate withholding of stock i.e. Mass Effect 3 & Fifa 13, I would not be surprised this was to continue to rebuild relations with retailers who currently rely on used game sales to (in this current economic climate) get by.

#102 Posted by Korolev (1727 posts) -

As others have said, a company doesn't abandon a profit-making strategy without another one planned. It's not just "negative" reactions - people have had negative reactions to online passes since they came into existence. They're announcing that they're discontinuing online passes, hoping to gain some positive publicity, before unveiling their next "anti-used-game" policy.

#103 Posted by StoffInator (150 posts) -

Maybe this is EA trying to give themselves a better image? Maybe they have something else "evil" planned?

#104 Posted by porjos (168 posts) -

Huh. Sure. I didn't really give a damn about online passes, since they seemed a fair way to recover profits from used sales (it's not like I have any sympathy for GameStop or Best Buy), but sure.

What remains concerning is their insistence that I buy every EA game on Origin if I want to play the PC (i.e. optimal) version.

Truth, while EA is p.o.s. to consumers often, it's not a satanic thing to capitalize in a fair enough manner on a game they funded and published.

#105 Posted by big_jon (5788 posts) -

@sooty said:

Waiting for the catch.

Agreed.

#106 Edited by TPoppaPuff (285 posts) -

I understand it was mildly inconvenient to type in that code before you could play online multiplayer and it made it virtually impossible to rent certain only-centric games (aside from the ones with a trial period); but honestly, did it ever prevent anyone here from actually buying a game? Not "I will not buy this game. It has an online pass and on principle I wouldn't buy it," but did anybody actually say:

"Man, I am absolutely want to buy this game. It is worth $60+, but because there's a free online pass I can not buy this game because of the two minutes of work associated with it."

lol. I mean honestly I can not think of a single EA title I didn't buy only because of an online pass. I didn't buy their games because they weren't my cup of tea or because they were rentals at best or simply not worth $60. 'Online pass' was a dirty word that IMHO never actually influenced a purchase, only a perception of the company as a whole. And maybe there's something to that; maybe sales were negatively affected because they were EA titles and because of their reputation partially because they had this goofy online pass. With that said, if you're not judging the product for what it is on it's own, you're an idiot.

#107 Posted by THRICE_604 (210 posts) -

I wonder if in conjunction with the near unanimous disgust people had with the concept in the vocal corner of the internet that regular consumers were just not purchasing the pass when they bought a used copy. If sales of passes individually were very good I don't see EA just abandoning the idea. Unless Microsoft does something stupid like console based DRM for retail games. Or they feel their public image has hit critical mass and they need to start performing triage on some of these programs.

#108 Posted by Nethlem (442 posts) -

@fiberpay: Because your privately held grocery store works on the very same basics as an international, publicly traded company with several billion dollars of revenue each year. EA, unlike your grocery store, has to run every of these decision trough a board of directors that only cares for very few things, namely: Increased profits and dividends.

And we don't really need to "wait" for them to apply such business practices. We already have a "survival horror" game with shoved in microtransactions and a city management game which had quite a few of it's staple features and scale removed, for the sole purpose of nickle&dimming people when they release them at an later date.

I wouldn't even mind all this, if they at least would try to do it the right way. But so far the only thing they've been doing is adding microtransactions and F2P mechanics to games they still sell at a full price. So excuse me if i can't believe they suddenly found their inner good side and decided to treat their "customers" like best buddies from now on. I'm sticking to the usual rule of thump that applies to most of business and the internet: If something looks to be to good to be true, it's usually not true.

#109 Posted by tourgen (4542 posts) -

well alright. taken alone this is a pretty decent step to getting me to buy EA games again. Good work EA. You may proceed.

#110 Edited by Unmada (68 posts) -

I have a bad feeling about this.

#111 Edited by JackG100 (407 posts) -

@phished0ne: Those things were awesome. As was the book with journalentries and maps you got with the game... I would totally buy an RPG using outside props like that.

#112 Edited by Roger778 (960 posts) -

The only time I ever used an online pass, was when I wanted to try out the multiplayer for Mass Effect 3. It was surprisingly fun when I tried it out a few times, but that was it.

In my opinion, it seems like EA has finally responded to all of the backlash it has gotten from gamers over the years, and this is the first step. I personally don't see what's so great about Online Passes, so I won't miss them.

Good job, on doing this, EA.

#113 Posted by Gamer_152 (14110 posts) -

I've given EA a lot of shit, but genuine kudos to them for this. I share everyone else's anxiety that something worse than online passes might be around the corner though.

Moderator
#114 Posted by gaminghooligan (1483 posts) -

I want to be happy about this, but in the back of my mind I have this horrible vision of content within a game being blocked off by pay walls and endings only accessible in DLC.

#115 Edited by GiantAlston (93 posts) -

Goodbye online-passes. Hello, Micro-transactions out of the ass!

#116 Posted by InternetDetective (353 posts) -

@mrgtd: Either that or they were noticing it wasn't working the way they thought it would.

#117 Posted by fiberpay (282 posts) -

@nethlem: lol, I thought my grocery store was the same as EA?? lol kids.

#118 Posted by Nethlem (442 posts) -

@fiberpay: If you wouldn't have thought that, you wouldn't have felt the need to mention it in the first place. But you felt the need to mention it, why you felt that way is up to you, not me.

#119 Posted by fiberpay (282 posts) -

@nethlem: I brought that up not to compare my store to EA but to point out to you "mr. business expert" than I most certainly have knowledge of how business's are ran. No where did I say that my store is like EA. You sir need to spend less time acting like you know how to run a business and learn to read. Also, maybe you should brush up on your business skills before your assume my business is not publicly traded. Would you like to purchase some shares?

As I said in my original statement, it's just sad that the industry even looks on good change with a negative light. As I said, but you failed to read again, sure EA could be riding free press but that is just speculation.

Also, why am I not paying for reloads yet?

#120 Posted by aldo_q (125 posts) -

From now on all of EA's games will require a Monkey Island Code Wheel?

#121 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@big_jon said:

@sooty said:

Waiting for the catch.

Agreed.

The catch is a new DRM measure that will be built into next gen consoles. Obviously just a guess, but if they're ending online passes this conveniently near the new consoles, something tells me there will be a layer of DRM there that EA will use to screw over consumers again.

#122 Edited by redjacked (47 posts) -

Project $10 is blossoming into Project $70, if Michael Pachter is (ever) correct :D

#123 Edited by GreenLantern52 (1 posts) -

@bestusernameever: They are most likely just clearing the way for microtransactions. If online passes weren't selling well, that means most people weren't able to access the online portion and were dealing with it better than EA had expected. Why lockout potential microsales from potential customers, when it is a much more above board and profitable business model? I doubt they have a replacement drm in mind. Just clearing the path for their online games to sell you points, guns and other junk.

#124 Posted by Bunny_Fire (336 posts) -

kind of a disappointment i was hoping that you will pay for the basic executable for the game with no game-play just so you can register then pay for every single bit of artwork detail and functionality as a individual transaction.

#125 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@bestusernameever: They are most likely just clearing the way for microtransactions. If online passes weren't selling well, that means most people weren't able to access the online portion and were dealing with it better than EA had expected. Why lockout potential microsales from potential customers, when it is a much more above board and profitable business model? I doubt they have a replacement drm in mind. Just clearing the path for their online games to sell you points, guns and other junk.

Yep, sounds accurate, sadly.

#126 Posted by Dezztroy (864 posts) -

I guess the "market" for used games is much larger than EA anticipated, and I guess the majority of them thought it was terrible that they had to actually pay the company that made/published the game.

#127 Edited by Brackynews (4094 posts) -

Well, I am pretty sure I've never paid for an online pass, and I'm pretty sure I still have unclaimed ones still in game boxes. Not having a LIVE subscription will do that.

For PS3 games I knew I wanted to play online, surprise, I bought them new or received them as gifts. U3 and Dirt 3 come to mind... not sure what else offhand.

The closest thing I've done to what a pass is meant for, is renting Asura's Wrath and buying the ending DLC. I felt totally fine about that.

#128 Posted by Dacnomaniac (444 posts) -

I didn't really mind them. After all they don't get ANYTHING from used game sales, at least this way the gain a little.

#129 Posted by cbarnes86 (559 posts) -

Sooo the first game that comes to mind in the near future is Madden 25. Will this not have the Online Pass?

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