Here come the BF4 lawsuits.

#1 Posted by OldManLight (905 posts) -

Puts on my @patrickklepek hat,

Just read this article stating that a lawfirm in Northern California has filed a suit on behalf of the investors who acquired stock in EA for the specified time period prior to Battlefield 4's release. The suit alleges that EA intentionally manipulated investors into buying artificially inflated stock prices and then shipped a broken game causing their stock prices to drop.

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20131217006560/en/Robbins-Geller-Rudman-Dowd-LLP-Files-Class

#2 Posted by Sterling (2608 posts) -

nonsense.

#3 Posted by Doctorchimp (4078 posts) -

I was expecting a whiny gamer being ridiculous. This is actually stock manipulation and insider trading and some other nonsense I pretend to understand when I watch Wall Street movies...and will continue to pretend when I watch Wolf of Wall Street.

#4 Posted by hermes (1589 posts) -

This is a new one. I read the title and was expecting a gamer suing over some lost data or something...

This is different. For the record, I don't think they have grounds to it, but it would have more ramifications than the average suit game companies receive.

#5 Posted by Demoskinos (15107 posts) -

Yeah, that sounds real dumb. Also, Battlefield games are ALWAYS broken at launch. Always. This one seems to have more lingering issues than the rest.

#6 Posted by MildMolasses (3228 posts) -

That seems like it would be tough to prove. Plenty of online focused games ship "broken" and require post-launch work to get up to the level it should be. That is extremely shitty for the end consumer, but there is precedence for that type of thing happening all the time with fixes coming in the weeks shortly after. They would have to prove that there was intent to ship this out in such a poor state that wouldn't be able to fix it in a reasonable time. Since they explicitly mention the PS4 version it would be possible to defend against it because it was on brand new hardware with no way to do large scale testing on so they would have no reasonable way of knowing how many issues they would run into trying to fix it.

Shitty for the people who bought the game, but ultimately this is a case of rich people vs rich corporation and this does nothing to help the consumer

#7 Posted by MB (12933 posts) -

This law firm isn't exactly a chop shop. They specialize in class action suits against major, international corporations. On that basis alone, one shouldn't dismiss this as "nonsense."

Moderator
#8 Edited by HatKing (6063 posts) -

Something needs to deter companies from releasing games in this state. It's bullshit. Bugs that are only found when a million people play something at once is one thing. A half-functioning (or, in some cases, entirely broken) product is something else entirely. And reviewing multiplayer focused games before multiplayer is up and running is totally worthless to the consumer, and only benefits the image of companies that created best-possible circumstances for the critics.

#9 Edited by OldManLight (905 posts) -

@hatking said:

Something needs to deter companies from releasing games in this state. It's bullshit. Bugs that are only found when a million people play something at once is one thing. A half-functioning (or, in some cases, entirely broken) product is something else entirely. And reviewing multiplayer focused games before multiplayer is up and running is totally worthless to the consumer, and only benefits the image of companies that created best-possible circumstances for the critics.

i completely agree. i bought Battlefield 4 more than a month ago on PC and i've barely been able to play it online because of all the technical issues it's shipped with. As much as i hate lawsuits, if this will help deter broken games from making it to store shelves or digital distribution, i'm ok with it.

#10 Edited by MariachiMacabre (7099 posts) -

I came in here expecting another "WE LOST OUR SAVE DATA" lawsuit but this sounds like they have a legitimate case here.

#11 Posted by jkz (4050 posts) -

That sounds fucking crazy if it's at all the case. Not what I expected from the title in the slightest

#12 Posted by Kidavenger (3608 posts) -

What kind of idiot would sue a company that they own, it's like suing yourself.

Durr stock price goes down, I'ma sue company because reasons...

#13 Posted by MentalDisruption (1664 posts) -

Oh wow was not expecting something that at least sounds somewhat like an actual case. Not that I know anything about this stuff, but it at least sounds better than the whiny gamer stuff I was expecting.

#14 Edited by maverick1 (92 posts) -

good maybe it will keep EA from releasing broken games in the future.

#15 Posted by OldManLight (905 posts) -

What kind of idiot would sue a company that they own, it's like suing yourself.

Durr stock price goes down, I'ma sue company because reasons...

investors would do such a thing. They may own a piece of the company but when that piece rapidly devalues following a product launch failure, they'll attempt recoup their money any way they can. Also, the class in this case are investors who bought common stock in EA between July 24 2013 and December 4th. This doesn't mean they still own a piece of stock. in fact they've probably sold them at a loss and that's what they're trying to recoup from.

#16 Posted by Viking_Funeral (1859 posts) -

Tsk. No one cares until investors get upset. That's depressing.

#17 Edited by afabs515 (1264 posts) -

Good. They deserve to take a hit on this, even if that hit is just all the negative publicity and cost of a lawsuit. The way they handled this game is unquestionably bad business.

#18 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

I don't even know why they felt the need to rush it out before Call of Duty. They are not exactly the same audience, there's some crossover but that's it.

The pace of conquest, arguably the main mode and staple of Battlefield is so much slower than anything in Call of Duty. (excluding S&D)

#19 Posted by JasonR86 (9763 posts) -

Idiots.

#20 Posted by sarahsdad (1119 posts) -

That's kind of interesting. I wonder what sort of expert witnesses they call to testify that EA should have known how broken things were prior to launch

#21 Posted by CrazyBagMan (857 posts) -

Which I find ironic if true because I feel like one of the major reasons for games being rushed is to appease stockholders. Weird.

#22 Edited by JayEH (538 posts) -

Even if this lawsuit goes nowhere, I'm glad EA is going to have to wake up and stop the B.S. they've been pulling.

#23 Posted by mordukai (7184 posts) -

@hatking said:

Something needs to deter companies from releasing games in this state. It's bullshit. Bugs that are only found when a million people play something at once is one thing. A half-functioning (or, in some cases, entirely broken) product is something else entirely. And reviewing multiplayer focused games before multiplayer is up and running is totally worthless to the consumer, and only benefits the image of companies that created best-possible circumstances for the critics.

Companies like EA have time schedules, quarterly reports, salaries to pay, expanses, and most importantly, stockholders that they answer to. The amount of money they gain to lose from delaying the game is much more then the shit they have to deal with releasing a game prematurely.

Now that's not saying that I agree with them. I don't. However, I think as gamers we need to understand all the sides and not just ours. At least we are in age where games can be repaired and patched post release. I don't know how old are you or how long you've been gaming but I remember the time where if games came out broken then that's what you got.

Now you can come and say "well I paid for it. I want my product working" and you have the full right to, but, you made a decision to buy a product before it comes out and you have no idea how it's going to turn out.

I am pretty sure the people at DICE are hard at work fixing the game so things will be improved.

Yeah, that sounds real dumb. Also, Battlefield games are ALWAYS broken at launch. Always. This one seems to have more lingering issues than the rest.

Agree, I would also like to add that if companies waited for games to be finished before they are done then we would never get to play them. I am still amazed, after listening to developers talk about making games, that they get to ship the damn thing.

#24 Edited by big_jon (5775 posts) -

As some have said, it kind of pisses me off that the customers seem to be taking back seat to the investors here they're pissed off of the prospect of Dice having to take time to fix a game that yet again was pushed out too early by EA. It's really fucked up, I could give two shits about these money hungry investors, do right by the people consuming your product first and foremost.

#25 Edited by tourgen (4542 posts) -

Tsk. No one cares until investors get upset. That's depressing.

that's capitalism working as intended. the system is about the money. It really shouldn't be depressing. It's working as intended.

Maybe some good can come from this - EA could think twice about shoving out a broken product.

#26 Edited by Quarters (1814 posts) -

Way more business suits involved in this than I expected. No matter how small, this could actually potentially be something for EA to be concerned about.

#27 Posted by RVonE (4687 posts) -

So, these investors want all of the money and none of the risk?

Which I find ironic if true because I feel like one of the major reasons for games being rushed is to appease stockholders. Weird.

Yep.

#28 Posted by MightyDuck (1524 posts) -

I was expecting a whiny gamer being ridiculous. This is actually stock manipulation and insider trading and some other nonsense I pretend to understand when I watch Wall Street movies...and will continue to pretend when I watch Wolf of Wall Street.

That is exactly what I was expecting to. I'm curious to see how this in particular plays out.

#29 Edited by HatKing (6063 posts) -

@mordukai: I'm from that same time. I've been following pretty closely since the late eighties or early nineties. And I'm not saying patching is bad, but that it is being abused. Games that came out before patching was really a thing weren't coming out totally broken on this scale. Certainly not major releases like Battlefield, anyway. This consumer blaming bullshit has to stop. Developers get closed and its our fault for buying used games. Games come out broken and its our fault for not being patient. Micro-transactions plague our games and its our fault for not voting with our wallets. I've gotten to the point where I don't even feel it when a publisher closes doors anymore. The developers will easily find work on the indie scene making games that don't take advantage of the consumer, and likely fit their creative vision more closely. The ones that have to worry are the deluded publishers who think they can all be multi-millionaires when they produce cookie cutter shooters or yet another subscription based MMO.

#30 Posted by NoK (325 posts) -

@kidavenger: Um, uh.....okay I can't even begin but this comment is so goddamn blind to reality it hurts my face. Go and type in a google search for shareholders or investors that are in the process of filing a suit and you will get an idea of how often this happens and why it is sometimes justified, and sometimes not.

#31 Posted by Broomhitches (173 posts) -

We consumers need to hold video game companies to a higher standard. There are so many people who blindly purchase the next iteration of a game and they have to wait for patches etc. These companies know they will make dough even if they don't run appropriate testing.

#32 Posted by crithon (3441 posts) -

so will ea get that worst company three years in a row?

#33 Edited by Kidavenger (3608 posts) -

@nok said:

@kidavenger: Um, uh.....okay I can't even begin but this comment is so goddamn blind to reality it hurts my face. Go and type in a google search for shareholders or investors that are in the process of filing a suit and you will get an idea of how often this happens and why it is sometimes justified, and sometimes not.

Investing is taking on risk in the interest of making money, you can't fucking sue your investment because a project went bad, and it's really too soon to even say that it has gone badly, the only thing that has actually happened is the market reacting to bad news as it tends to do; YOU CAN'T FUCKING SUE OVER RETARDED SHIT LIKE THIS.

If EA did something deceitful, state it because I really don't believe they have and I hate EA as a general rule and almost never give them the benefit of the doubt.

Anyone that put money into EA based on expectations of good games after the past 3 years of disasters deserves what they get.

#34 Edited by Nekroskop (2786 posts) -

Ah, the scourge of modern gaming; "We'll patch it in post". BF4 is on a whole other level though. I'm pretty sure the game was 6 months from being 100% ready when they shipped it.

Gotta compete with dat Cawaduty!

Get it together, EA...

@crithon: I sure hope so. Hiding behind minorities was probably the most disgusting move I've seen a gamecompany do.

#35 Posted by mordukai (7184 posts) -

@hatking: Hi, that's the industry we choose to support. No one is making us buy the games from those companies. If you feel like you are being used, abused and taking advantage of then just as you said, vote with you wallet. Don't buy games from major companies. Believe me, we are just a drop in the sea of gamers and wallets. When I say "we" I mean gamers who are active within the gaming communities. The only people that can really change the way how big publishers go about their way are the stockholders.

Again, not blaming us. Every gamer has the right not choose wether or not they want to pre order a game or support companies. I just think nowadays gamers need to understand that when they buy a game on launch day they are essentially taking a risk, even more so with online centric games.

#36 Edited by subyman (654 posts) -

If they can prove EA knew the game was a broken mess but touted it as a huge money maker in their prospectus/investor meetings then the case does have merit. As much as I'd like gamers to boycott broken games, we don't have the will power. As for investors, don't mess with their money or shit gets real.

#37 Posted by Sooty (8082 posts) -

@nekroskop: and funnily enough it probably would have sold more if they released it later when people saw what a decline Ghosts is.

#38 Edited by HatKing (6063 posts) -

@mordukai: I'm not supporting their shitty ethics, I'm supporting the art. Part of why I give zero fucks when I buy a game used. Hey, if they want to repeatedly fuck the consumer, I might as well go the cheapest route possible. Beside that, I'm only out $60, at most. What do I have to worry about? I can swing the occasional bad purchase. They're the ones who should be worried. If you hadn't noticed this industry isn't exactly kind to middle of the road publishers nowadays. If they want to fuck the consumer, fine. But don't shirk the blame when your devs are looking for work in the independent space and suddenly there's not a job for the suits.

#39 Edited by DonPixel (2604 posts) -

I think fans filling a complain because of the Mass Effect 3 ending was utter nonsensical fanboy rage.

In the other hand BF4 deserves all the lawsuits it can get, EA DICE need to learn a lesson, the WHOLE INDUSTRY needs to learn a lesson: Take your time, don't sell an unfinished product, respect your costumer base.

Stop scamming people.

#40 Edited by CircleNine (381 posts) -

Despite the rage of BF4's awful launch, 90% of the people who bought it an experienced it will do the same all over again with the next one. They'll then be shocked and outraged about the poor state of the games release only to once again froth more impotent rage about it before once again buying the next one.

@crithon said:

so will ea get that worst company three years in a row?

EA never should have gotten that dubious distinction as shit as it is, and it's absolutely insane that it did. But hey, gamers are coddled as fuck.

#41 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7099 posts) -

Despite the rage of BF4's awful launch, 90% of the people who bought it an experienced it will do the same all over again with the next one. They'll then be shocked and outraged about the poor state of the games release only to once again froth more impotent rage about it before once again buying the next one.

@crithon said:

so will ea get that worst company three years in a row?

EA never should have gotten that dubious distinction as shit as it is, and it's absolutely insane that it did. But hey, gamers are coddled as fuck.

BLACKWATER AIN'T GOT SHIT ON GREEDY VIDEO GAME PUBLISHERS, SON!

#42 Edited by GreggD (4510 posts) -

Despite the rage of BF4's awful launch, 90% of the people who bought it an experienced it will do the same all over again with the next one. They'll then be shocked and outraged about the poor state of the games release only to once again froth more impotent rage about it before once again buying the next one.

@crithon said:

so will ea get that worst company three years in a row?

EA never should have gotten that dubious distinction as shit as it is, and it's absolutely insane that it did. But hey, gamers are coddled as fuck.

The game runs awesome for me, hardly any crashes. I could not give less of a shit. EA is also not the worst company in America, those people should be slapped for voting it.

#43 Posted by maverick1 (92 posts) -

@crithon: Lets hope so they fucking deserve it.

#44 Posted by crithon (3441 posts) -

@greggd said:

@circlenine said:

Despite the rage of BF4's awful launch, 90% of the people who bought it an experienced it will do the same all over again with the next one. They'll then be shocked and outraged about the poor state of the games release only to once again froth more impotent rage about it before once again buying the next one.

@crithon said:

so will ea get that worst company three years in a row?

EA never should have gotten that dubious distinction as shit as it is, and it's absolutely insane that it did. But hey, gamers are coddled as fuck.

The game runs awesome for me, hardly any crashes. I could not give less of a shit. EA is also not the worst company in America, those people should be slapped for voting it.

Oh they aren't the worst. In those past 2 votes of the Consumerist there were Bank of America, Ticket Master and Comcast. Clearly there were trolls in there

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