EA discontinuing use of online passes

EA is doing away with the online pass, promising that "none of our new EA titles will include that feature."

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Many years ago, EA launched "Project Ten Dollar," an initiative better known to gamers as the online pass. New copies of a game would include a one-time voucher that would offer access to game modes, typically online multiplayer. The program was to discourage used game sales--or, at the very least, make addition revenue off used games by selling passes to gamers.

Apparently, EA is doing away with the online pass, promising that "none of our new EA titles will include that feature."

EA's John Reseburg explained to VentureBeat that "players didn't respond to the format" and that the company "listened to the feedback and decided to do away with it moving forward."

While the move away from online passes is welcome news for gamers that buy and rent used games, EA does promise that it will monetize their content in new ways going forward, likely through microtransactions and other DLC. "We're still committed to creating content and services that enhance the game experience well beyond the day you first start playing," Reseburg added.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 15, 2013 6:03 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, EA discontinuing use of online passes.

    EA is doing away with the online pass, promising that "none of our new EA titles will include that feature."

    • reply
      May 15, 2013 6:09 PM

      As someone who doesn't buy used games I don't feel strongly or negatively either way. But it does seem odd that they almost reassure you that they will get money out of you some way: EA does promise that it will monetize their content in new ways going forward.

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      May 15, 2013 6:21 PM

      "monetize their content in new ways", i.e., stuff like Mass Effect 3 multiplayer's "random mystery box", or Dead Space 3's "currency packs" ( http://www.shacknews.com/article/77491/dead-space-3-to-include-microtransactions ) (which ended up in a bit of a controversy when the infinite resource farming glitch was found, and EA PR said, "Hey, you can buy resources!" http://www.shacknews.com/article/77773/dead-space-3-infinite-mining-not-a-glitch ).

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        May 16, 2013 12:54 AM

        ME3's system wasn't bad at all IMO. Buying currency is completely optional and because of the random nature of the system, it was hardly buying power. That and it was solely co-op so there's not many reasons to cry fowl.

        Utilize the same system in a competitive multiplayer and you might get some stink.

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      May 15, 2013 7:17 PM

      Good riddance, and now maybe I will start playing Battlefield 3 online. The online pass hurt EA because it makes the online multiplayer communities smaller because of the extra cost to get online when buying a used Battlefield game. This is why Call of Duty is so awesome and the communities are huge.

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        May 15, 2013 8:02 PM

        [deleted]

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          May 16, 2013 12:52 AM

          The booster packs were a bit more widely adopted than the Special Forces expansion. The problem Spec Forc had was that you couldn't make a server that integrates content from both. The game literally closed and restarted if you wanted to play servers for either game.

          That's a nice and easy way to create polarity between players.

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        May 16, 2013 12:01 AM

        Oh how I love the PC :)

        None of these problems. And the PC is where the real communities are too.

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        May 16, 2013 1:47 AM

        [deleted]

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      May 15, 2013 8:37 PM

      I bet if EA could they would charge per line of code that you use. Use. Not total code contained with the game, but how many lines of code you consume to enjoy their "content". Future editions will be able to count how many polygons, textures, licensed characters or properties, sound effects, etc. Every single piece of distinguishable content will have a price on it. At the end of your play session you'll get a bill what your time cost. You'll have to keep a valid credit card on file ahead of time to ensure payment - or they'll do some kind of stored currency that will be deducted as you consume their content.

      This is the way of the future!

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      May 15, 2013 11:20 PM

      Online passes don't make sense when your games are all always online I guess.

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      May 16, 2013 12:00 AM

      [deleted]

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      May 16, 2013 12:18 AM

      Probably making enough money off their card system in the sports games that getting more people playing is better for'em then the passes would be.

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      May 16, 2013 12:19 AM

      Could this add credence to new consoles allowing publishers the tools to lock game discs to an account and/or console?

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      May 16, 2013 12:56 AM

      Well, good. I don't sell my games but several friends have been bummed about the drop in resale value because of online passes. I just hope this doesn't mean that they have a better, more efficient system for hindering used sales coming.

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      May 16, 2013 3:06 AM

      After being charged to redownload BF2142 several years ago i totally havn't bought one of their games since.. Steam all the way for me! And Origin is a dirty word in my gaming community!

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      May 16, 2013 8:08 AM

      "players didn't respond to the format"

      ROFL... it wasn't a format. It was an obvious jab at game re-sellers at the cost of the customer... TWICE.

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        May 17, 2013 4:28 AM

        Sorry, I have to disagree there. Used sellers like gamestop were more or less forced to drop the price of used games to make up for the online pass. Online passes did absolutely nothing to hurt the end purchaser. It just meant instead of paying $55 to gamestop they paid $45 to gamestop and $10 to EA.

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