UFC 2010 Online Multiplayer Free with New Copies, Costs $5 Otherwise

Electronic Arts isn't the only company restricting online multiplayer to those that either buy a game new or pay an additional fee, as publisher THQ has now confirmed that Yuke's Osaka's UFC Undisputed 2010 will limit its online multiplayer functionality in a similar manner.

The game, slated to hit PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on May 25, will come bundled with a one-use code to unlock its online multiplayer component. Meanwhile, those that play a second-hand copy--used, borrowed, rented, etc.--will need to pay a 400 Microsoft Point / $5 fee to gain online multiplayer access, THQ explained to Destructoid after Pastapadre broke the news.

THQ made no mention of offering a free trial to second-hand players--each of Electronic Arts' "Online Pass" games will include a free seven-day trial for non-new players.

Such efforts mark the latest step as publishers look to recoup the lack of revenue they receive from used game sales. Companies such as Microsoft and Electronic Arts also bundle free downloadable content with new copies of games for similar reasons, with Ubisoft recently noting it "will probably be following that line."

Chris Faylor was previously a games journalist creating content at Shacknews.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 20, 2010 9:11 AM

    Apparently the Publishers are pointing the guns and holding their customers hostage. At the end of the day it'll just end up being a situation where they're shooting themselves in the foot.

    Publishers have a problem with retailers reselling products to customers and not getting any kickbacks. How do they solve the problem? Charging their customers extra money.

    All they're doing is devaluing their own product. Not that I was in any rush to pick this up in the first place, but the day I have to research whether or not purchasing a product will only entitle me to "part" of the experience is the day I'm just as happy to not buy their products at all.

    Keep treating your customers like criminals. Keep trying to nickle and dime them by releasing half finished products, and then charging to unlock additional content (Beautiful Katamari anyone?). No one cares about your DLC.

    I'm going to deal with this problem the same way I delt with my EA problems. I'm just not going to buy their products. "Marketing" is the part where you try to convince me to buy your game. I play games for enjoyment, and unfortunately buy more than I can consume sometimes. I'm just as comfortable to go back to my growing backlog. The industry needs to understand people will spend the money and probably never open/play the games. I've seen this happening a lot recently where people make a lot of impulse buys (no pun intended...). Steam deals have done this to many of us. So for those willing to fork over between $2-$10 for something they'll play less than 2 hours...it's interesting.

    There is a ton of money to be made in the industry. You're just getting it wrong when you get greedy.

    • reply
      May 20, 2010 9:23 AM

      Nono, you miss the point. They're not charging their customers extra money. The ones who pay more are the ones who don't give a single dollar/pound/ruble/whatever to the game publisher themselves.

      Only used games copies are gonna end up "costing more", and even then you're probably gonna end up paying less than the retail price unless you can't count.

      I only hope that if Ubi follows suit, they'll ditch that always-on DRM of theirs.

      • reply
        May 20, 2010 9:30 AM

        and by doing so, the resale market will only charge less... since there will be an increased supply of used games nobody is buying, thus making 2nd hand copies cheaper. Maybe only $5 cheaper, but then you've made up the difference.

        So what publishers are REALLY doing is making themselves look like A-holes, and making their second hand gamers take one extra step.

        • reply
          May 20, 2010 9:33 AM

          Except, if you didn't want to go online anyways you are actually saving even more money. More options!

          • reply
            May 20, 2010 9:40 AM

            Very true. There are some games that just don't play well in multi.

        • reply
          May 20, 2010 10:00 AM

          No.. what the publishers are doing is raising the possibility of getting ANY revenue from used sales.

          If gamestop currently sells a used game for $40, and has to drop it to $35 because anyone who wants multi- will have to pay $5 for it... the customer is still only paying $40 total, but now the publisher is getting SOMETHING for that second-hand sale, instead of it being 100% gamestop profit.

          It's amazing to me how the publishers can be demonized for this sort of thing, whereas gamestop (who is essentially ripping off the game industry by re-selling games at huge profits) can be seen as saintly for saving you a few dollars.

      • reply
        May 20, 2010 9:31 AM

        Unless that extra cost is used to support servers or other infrastructure related to the online component, they can go fuck themselves. What other product do you buy second hand but then have to give money to the publisher/manufacture in order to "unlock" it, when that unlocking does not add any extra burden whatsoever to the company?
        None, because it would be *completely* unacceptable to do that in any other industry, yet somehow publishers can get away with this type of garbage.

        • reply
          May 20, 2010 10:06 AM

          That's the thing - that infrastructure -does- cost pretty serious money to support. It does add burden to a company to support an online gaming system. And why should people have the use of that system if they've not paid anything towards the upkeep of it?

          • reply
            May 20, 2010 10:15 AM


          • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
            May 20, 2010 10:27 AM

            It does, but...each disk can only be online once at any give time...so reselling it does not cost ANY additional resources.

          • reply
            May 20, 2010 10:39 AM

            Because money has already been spent toward that end.

            Person A buys one copy of Online Shooter X, and each copy uses one Player Unit of infrastructure resources.

            When Person A sells their copy to Person B, Person A is no longer using the resources they are supporting with their original purchase; Person B is using them instead.

      • reply
        May 20, 2010 9:35 AM

        I don't care what u say. There is no justifying this. I already am paying for my hi speed Internet n my xbox live subscription fee. I don't want to pay extra just to play ONE game online. Is it our fault there titles don't want us to make day 1 purchases? Put out a good quality game and ppl will buy it day one. See mw2 n red dead. Of course a Lil hype behind ur product won't hurt. But the best way to tell the publishers that u don't agree with there actions is to vote with your wallet. If you keep on throwing your money at them they will still rape you for all the cash they can, see mw2 dlc. N I'm done

      • reply
        May 20, 2010 12:35 PM

        My point is entirely valid. I should now have to explain the difference between a publisher and a developer to my sister when she's purchasing games for the kids? We here at Shack are an extremely well educated group of enthusiasts. As much as we love ourselves we don't entirely dictate how the industry is run. Your average gamer is the one that's keeping the shitty companies in the industry afloat. EA has proved this for years.

        The customers are the ones the publishers make the games for. If we saw this type of behaviour in other industries we'd be appalled. They're creating a divide in the industry. Some publishers are choosing to go the path of "revenue recovery" in how they treat their customers, not to mention the DRM they implement treating their customers like convicted criminals. The amount of people that will actually fork over $5 for the ability to then use it online again is going to be extremely slim. Let's take a closer look at it.

        A customer returns a product they paid $60 for to their local Gamestop. Gamestop is essentially double dipping because they made the retail profit for the game initially and then when they resell the game they'll make additional profit as well. What the industry is missing is that the customer then more than likely uses that money to purchases something else that's new and exciting. How many times have we seen the "trade 2 get 1 free" etc promotions. The customer is the gamer. He's the constant consumer that's going back and purchasing games new and used. Look at your own collections, do you have a mix of mostly new, but some used titles? The used titles I have are because I refused to pay an inflated price for a game.

        The industry is greedy in that they see the money the retailers are making on used game sales and they are saying "I WANT MY CUT". I'm sorry, but without these stores and years of efforts on their parts (selling not only the stellar titles, but the absolute shit titles as well) the industry wouldn't be making any money in the first place. It's been a long standing mutual relationship between publishers and retailers on how things went. Everyone was making money and everyone was happy. I believe we just hit a major recession, and really...what happened with the industry? All the major players are still around, the independent developers are even finding their stride, and it has been argued that the industry is effectively recession proof because of the low cost of admission for great entertainment value. People still need entertainment when times are tough, and gaming gives great return on the money spent.

        When I was a kid I spent a lot of money on used games. Why? I was piss poor that's why. Now that I'm in a much more comfortable position I'm more than happy to pay full retail for the companies and publishers I respect. I use that dollar as well to not only support those that I love and encourage them to make more exciting games, but also to dictate the shit they're trying to hook me with.

        Listen...all the major publishers are crying foul when it comes to losing all of this money. All the major players that are making these decisions, that are reaping the most profits from schemes like this aren't the ones that are pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into the industry. It's just like the music industry. There is very little "trickle down" effect to those. Are the artists, developers, etc getting residuals on the DLC purchases? They're basically just unlocking a feature the game already has, so the overhead on something like this is nothing.

        It's gouging their customers at every chance. The publishers aren't having food taken off their table. They're getting greedy. I'll tell you this much. If a new copy of UFC 2010 is $30 new. Used copy is $20 with $5 to get the downloaded content. As a customer would you want a used copy or a new copy?

        Price the product accordingly and you'll get the proper return on your investment. It's easy to sit on our high horses here and say everyone needs to be in the know, but the customers that will be affected by this won't be educated by the proper channels.

    • reply
      May 20, 2010 9:25 AM

      No kidding. I rarely buy any major titles anymore because of the types of BS you described in your post. The only time I do is when there isn't any BS like this included with the title.
      This is the first year in my life where I have bought MORE indie titles than major release, and frankly I hope others follow suit and stop giving their money to assholes.

    • reply
      May 20, 2010 9:36 AM

      purchasable WoW mounts, MW2 map packs etc. disproves your statement that noone cares about DLC.

      The price for a new game hasn't changed so how is the publisher charging the customer extra money?

      Buying a used game vs. not buying a used game is exactly the same thing to a publisher so do you think they care that you decided not to buy it? The less inclined you are to buy a used game, the more pressure is put on the stores to push new sales.

      Yes there is a ton of money to be made in the industry, you deeming dlc being the wrong way means nothing.

      • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
        May 20, 2010 10:37 AM

        That purchasable WoW mount is ENTIRELY optional, duplicates functionally easily attained during normal play, and is entirely fluff.

    • reply
      May 20, 2010 9:39 AM

      Vote with your wallet only works if a majority follow suit. If it's just you (and a small minority also) then it's just pissin into the wind (all you end up with, is piss on your face). The millions in sales of the largely agreed to be overpriced MW2 map pack shows that, your missed sales don't impact their bottom lines, and thus won't have any change.

      Depressingly true unfortunately :(

      • reply
        May 20, 2010 10:25 AM

        Voting with your wallet doesn't work with used games because the publisher loses no money when you don't purchase a used title unless you were going to buy DLC for it later or you were going to demo the game for friends who then later purchase new copies. SO everyone avoiding buying used copies from some publisher won't negatively effect their bottom line.

        • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
          May 20, 2010 10:38 AM

          However, not buying games that use this "feature" at all, does. However insignificant and easily ignored, it's a statement I'll be making.

          • reply
            May 20, 2010 11:23 AM

            I dunno, I mean, you are the only one that loses out, no? They lose one sale, (maybe a small % more). If it's not enough to change their decisions, then ultimately whether you bought it or not, didn't change anything. They only difference it made is you had to miss out on the game. So unless you get enough satisfaction from following your principles, it seems like a losing proposition.

          • reply
            May 20, 2010 12:22 PM

            Yeah thats true, but I assume all games are going to use this feature soon and my next assumption is that most people who are angry about it will start buying games again once every game includes this type of freemium content.

            • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
              May 20, 2010 12:50 PM

              Maybe they'll start buying them again...maybe not. It might well drive them in a different direction.

    • reply
      May 20, 2010 10:13 AM

      How are they charging their customers extra money? The cost of the game is the same. They only charge their NON CUSTOMERS extra money.

      • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
        May 20, 2010 10:39 AM

        1) I rent a game from Gamefly
        2) I want to play the game online before I buy it, to see if I enjoy it
        3) It costs me $5 to do so
        4) I then decide to keep it, they send me the game, with the code that I already purchased
        5) I now spent $5 more than I should have and otherwise would have
        6) They can go fuck themselves

        • reply
          May 20, 2010 11:27 AM


          • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
            May 20, 2010 11:51 AM

            Gamefly keep it price is much lower than eb games

        • reply
          May 20, 2010 1:02 PM

          You are not a customer to the publisher so they don't care.

          • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
            May 20, 2010 2:33 PM

            Even though I am buying the copy of the game?


            • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
              May 20, 2010 3:19 PM

              No, really, this post pisses me off.

              Distro sells it to Walmart, I buy it from Walmart: I'm a customer
              Distro sells it to Gamefly, I buy it from Gamefly: I'm not a customer

              Is that what you're saying?

              • reply
                May 20, 2010 3:32 PM

                i would say you arent a customer of the publisher if you arent purchasing a brand new copy of the game. be it walmart or having it mailed directly from the publisher as long as you are the original owner (in this case you would have the download code to redeem when you open the game for the first ever time). if you arent the original owner of property then no the publisher shouldnt care about you.

                you ever read product warranties? a lot of times if not always they dont transfer past the original purchaser be it store or manufacturer warranty. this really isnt any different.

                • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
                  May 20, 2010 4:11 PM

                  I am buying a brand new copy 9/10 times, since I nearly always get first run, new release games. It comes directly to me, I get to try it, and most likely keep it, before anyone else touches it except to remove it from the case and slip it in a paper envelope.

                  • reply
                    May 21, 2010 5:41 PM

                    then why are you crying? you will have the redeem code for the online portion of your game. this extra charge is only for someone that doesnt have access to that original code by either renting a game or buying a used copy.

                    • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
                      May 21, 2010 7:29 PM

                      I rent from Gamefly.

                      For the few days until I decide to "KEEP IT," I'm a renter and don't have access to that code insert. So in order to try the online portion, I have to spend an extra $5.

                      Are you daft or have you just never used Gamefly? If the latter, I recommend it.

              • reply
                May 20, 2010 4:09 PM

                im not 100% sure how the rental markets for games works, if publishers get a cut or not on them....

                I believe EA is doing something where you get 7 free days of online play so if you buy it used or rent it you can try the online.

                THQ doesn't appear to be doing it that way, yet...

                But yeah if the publisher isn't getting a cut from the rentals or the sale of a used game from the rental place then yeah you are a customer to blockbuster or gamefly or whatever, but not a THQ customer.

                It is not THQs business plan to sell you used games at a 300-500% markup, that's gamestop's plan. Services like Gamefly are just getting caught in the middle of this whole thing but whatever, when you make, fund, and market a game your intention is to sell it to the customer new. And the people who make games don't appreciate all the time, money, and effort they put into getting people to walk through gamestop's door to buy a new game only to all the Gamestop employees urge the potential customer with new game copy in hand to instead buy the game used.

                • Ebu legacy 10 years legacy 20 years
                  May 20, 2010 4:15 PM

                  They had to buy the copy of the game. The game copy did not magically appear.

                  God, reading your posts is pissing me off, I'm going to have to stop posting in these threads before I break a keyboard.

                  Gamefly amounts to a try-before-you-buy system. A system, I might add, that would be unnecessary if demos and adverts were at all representative of the game. I can have a game (BRAND FUCKING NEW) sent to me 2 days after release, try it for a few days, and then keep it if I like it.

                  I am the only person who has played that copy of the game.

                  Even if I'm not, it's no different than a store allowing 7 days to return a game you don't like, and then buying that copy when it's back on the shelf.

                  • reply
                    May 20, 2010 9:29 PM

                    Tell Gamefly to give you a code then

                  • reply
                    May 20, 2010 10:19 PM

                    but thats gamefly's problem and your problem, not the publishers problem. The publisher didn't start their business to make sure gamefly is all setup and happy.

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