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Businesses The Almighty Buck Games

EA Introduces "Online Pass" To Get In On Used Games Market 223

EA Sports has unveiled a new feature that they hope will help them get a piece of the lucrative used games market: the Online Pass. Each of their new titles will come with a one-time code that allows access to "premium" content and features. Players who buy the games used can get the same content, but will need to pay $10 for the privilege. "According to EA, the content can include anything from title updates and downloads to features like online leagues — and even online gameplay and multiplayer modes. ... EA will offer 10-day trials of Pass content so that users can see what they would be getting. So far, EA seems to be limiting the premium add-on experiment to its sports portfolio. ... The company has apparently gained the support of retailer GameStop, which has been watching with a close eye efforts on the part of publishers to discourage its thriving used games business. According to the retailer, encouraging premium content add-ons still benefits GameStop, since it sells PlayStation Network and Microsoft Points cards. It praised EA's Online Pass as 'forward-thinking.'"
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EA Introduces "Online Pass" To Get In On Used Games Market

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  • by Decollete ( 1637235 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:34AM (#32167106)
    I hope this doesn't end up like those "free-to-play" online games where players can buy "premium content" for in-game advantage
    • by QuantumLeaper ( 607189 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:00AM (#32167234) Journal
      I don't think so, it sounds like if you buy a New game you get a 'serial' number for DLC but if you buy a Used games, you have to buy the DLC for $10. It more to kill the used game market since they don't get a cut from it.
      • by delinear ( 991444 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:10AM (#32167286)
        That's what I thought. I've stopped even bothering to go into Game/Gamestation here in the UK because of the already ridiculous prices of used games (often you only get a couple of quid off the new price, occasionally the used price is more than the new price, and considering the gamble of a used, possibly scratched disk, it's just not worth it anymore) - add another £5-10 onto the price and I don't see how the used market can survive.
        • how will the used market survive? Easily.

          This just gives people more reasons to pirate a game again, as all those "online additions" are included in the pirated version.

          Meanwhile, you can still buy the original(used) and get a crack/hack to add in the addons, which is even easier to obtain.

          So what does this change? Nothing.

          EA just doesn't like the used market, and they can't do anything about it. I hope they try to take someone to court over it so that a judge can prove they basically can't (and shouldn't)

          • by flitty ( 981864 )
            I think EA is trying to kill the Console used game market. PC games are already hard enough to get rid of (many stores will not buy them at all, and if they do they don't pay much for them). This is thanks to each individual game having different activation codes. Not to mention that most PC games only DRM is a unique Serial code that you could just keep that code and sell the game.

            Console games are the focus here, where the used games/traded games/friend sharing problem seriously hurts these developer
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by poetmatt ( 793785 )

              This is a better solution than any sort of draconian DRM scheme.

              Are you disregarding that the console itself IS drm?

              This isn't better, it's just a different flavor of DRM and just as bad.

              This means you can't even take the game over to your friends house to play online together (2v2).

              Again, there are situations that this affects other than just the used game market.

      • From what I've heard regarding this, you'll need to pay the $10-15 just to be able to play the title online.

        What's really crappy is that people still sell used games to GameStop and people still buy their used games. Granted, sometimes you will find a decent deal on an older game. Example, found a copy of Guitar Hero III for PS3 yesterday for $10. That's not bad if you've not dipped into the music games. But most newer games are only going to be $5-10 lower than retail. Glyde [] or eve
      • EA actually already does this with Battlefield Bad Company 2. They call it VIP access and you get some map packs for free by having the VIP code that comes with the original purchase. Its $5 to buy VIP access after you buy the game used. So, there is nothing new about this and nothing limiting it to EA Sports games.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mwvdlee ( 775178 )

      I think it'll be more like buy a demo for the price of a full game which then requires the code not just for "premium" content but for "normal" content as well.

  • cheating the laws (Score:5, Insightful)

    by KiloByte ( 825081 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:35AM (#32167112)

    Yay... a yet another attempt to work around the First Sale rules. All they're doing is relabeling part of the package, so instead it's an "add-on" now.

    By "title updates" they really mean bug-fix patches. In other words, this "Online Pass" thingy is strictly negative.

    • Re:cheating the laws (Score:5, Interesting)

      by redscare2k4 ( 1178243 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:42AM (#32167150)

      I've already heard about this. Is not patches and bugfixes they're aiming at. Its more like "our new FPS comes with the incredible amount of 2!! multiplayer maps, and as a free DLC you get another 10maps!!". Of course if you got the game used, you've got to ditch $10 bucks to get those 10 maps. But they're totally optional, right? :D

      Seems game companies like Ubisoft and EA are keen on sending more ammunition to ppl defending piracy to be used against them. Oh well...

      • Re:cheating the laws (Score:5, Interesting)

        by redscare2k4 ( 1178243 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:45AM (#32167160)

        Also (and sorry about the double post), game companies seem to forget that people who sell their games more often than not use that money to BUY MORE GAMES. Game companies are already getting benefits from the used game market, but as they can't put a figure in their anual reports, they're blind and think they're getting nothing.

        • by Tridus ( 79566 )

          With a rather large cut in the middle. Gamespot buys the game for $20 from one user, then sells it to another user at $45. User 1 gets $20 towards a new $50 game, User 2 saves $5, Gamestop makes $25. Game publisher only makes money off User 1.

          Obviously, the publishers would rather User 2 pay $5 more and buy a new copy, which gives them revenue instead of Gamestop.

        • by vegiVamp ( 518171 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @10:04AM (#32168704) Homepage
          Yes, but surely you see how immoral that is ? That's like giving USED money to the game companies. You wouldn't want to use USED toilet paper now, would you ?

          No, you need to give them NEW money, you filthy pirate scum.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by harl ( 84412 )


          Say you have $120. Without used you can buy two games. With used you can sell those two games for $40 each and buy another game. That's a 50% increase in sales to EA that used is directly responsible for.

          The used people aren't lost sales. They're either frugal or limited income (often children). Either way they're people who aren't going to pay $60 for a game anyways. If there's no used they'll wait until it hits the clearance rack.

      • by sakdoctor ( 1087155 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:49AM (#32167186) Homepage

        I would love to pirate some EA games, but unfortunately they just keep pumping out "YourGFXcardCan'tHandleThisShooter 4", and "MySims 3D, coke&whores addon-pack"

      • I dont mind the $10 fee, if that 2nd hand game is $10 cheaper.

        ie $10 special, not $20.

        Though it is a bit scammy since the original purchaser can no longer use the DLC, so in effect, they are charging for a service, not a good.

      • by sorak ( 246725 )

        There are times when I have no problem with DLC. For example, I wouldn't expect Rock Band to include every bit of DLC available. In that case, you can see DLC as a way of giving the customer a choice of what content he or she is willing to pay for.

        But charging extra for multiplayer mode in a sports game is ridiculous.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by harl ( 84412 )

        But it doesn't hurt the pirates. It only hurts the used people. You can get any DLC you want on BT.

    • Yay... a yet another attempt to work around the First Sale rules. All they're doing is relabeling part of the package, so instead it's an "add-on" now.

      By "title updates" they really mean bug-fix patches. In other words, this "Online Pass" thingy is strictly negative.

      The doctrine of first sale is not universal nor all encompassing, in the US at least; there are a number of gray areas. In this case, they haven't prevented you from selling the tangible good you bought; but are not providing the same benefits that the original purchaser gets. Their only obligation is to you, the original purchaser; they do not have to provide the same level of support or access to subsequent purchasers. You could, of course, pass on to the subsequent purchaser they login credentials to

    • by WrongSizeGlass ( 838941 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:49AM (#32167496)

      By "title updates" they really mean bug-fix patches. In other words, this "Online Pass" thingy is strictly negative.

      This will also give EA the option of "discontinuing" this "super duper premium content" that was "soooo hot, and toooo cool" to even put on the game disk. They'll kill off this $10 DLC when the next sequel of their game hits the shelves.

    • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) *
      Today this will be restricted to "premium content." Tomorrow it will be required for multiplayer. The next day it will be required to even play the game at all.
  • by indytx ( 825419 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:44AM (#32167152)
    EA already uses "Service Updates" as an excuse to stop supporting online play after a certain period of time for many of its titles. [] Now, it's going to restrict the ability to even update the game? FTA, "According to EA, the content can include anything from title updates and downloads . . . ." So, to paraphrase, if I want to play my game on another console, or my console croaks and I replace it, I might not be able to download the updates (and there will be updates because the title shipped will be buggy) without paying again?
    • their attitude is literally
      "You shouldn't complain about it.
      Just pay us over and over and over and over.
      We're sure you can afford it."

    • by HungryHobo ( 1314109 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:52AM (#32167202)

      Also- jesus christ.
      They're retiring games less than a year old.

      In some countries consumer laws would still put electronic good under warranty for that long.

  • by HungryHobo ( 1314109 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:45AM (#32167164)

    To bring the book industry into the 21st century I propose a system whereby printed books be changed such that instead of the second half of the book you get a code which will allow you to access the end of the story through the publishers website.
    The ending shall be a free add-on which you may only access through our online service.
    You will be prohibited from transfering access to the ending to anyone since it's a service rather than an item.

    If you want to know the ending after you've bought a book second hand you'll have to pay a 10 dollar fee to us.

    • "Please enter word 15 paragraph 2 line 4 page 23 of the game manual in order to proceed"
      • Those weren't that bad. You could still sell the manual with the game on resale.

        Or for some of those games, they only had a dozen or so codes anyways. Just jot them down and avoid the manual.

        OR, with one game that a fried gave me a copy of in the 7th grade, that method of copy protection was simple to defeat with a little patience. He told me one of the words it would ask for. Don't remember what it was, but lets just say it was "tire".

        Open the game, it asks for the code. Enter "tire". Invalid? Darn.

    • Stephen King tried this - purchase a book chapter by chapter as an experiment. It failed, and the book was never finished.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Firkragg14 ( 992271 )
        A book is a terrible thing to use this approach on. It takes me all of 30minutes at most to read a chapter assuming its a long one. Then your gonna make me wait a month or so for another one. Theres no way im gonna bother reading a book like that in such a stop start manner. It does work for games though as there have been a few successful episodic games.
        • It works for comic books and graphic novels. Many of them come out monthly or bimonthly, take about 15-30 minutes to read an issue, and have ongoing plot-lines. TV shows takes either 30 or 60 minutes to watch, come out weekly, and many of those (think Lost, 24, Fringe, etc) have ongoing plot-lines.

          On a slightly related note, I finished GRR Martin's 4th ASoIaF book in two days, and have been waiting nearly five years for the 5th book. Which was originally the second half of the 4th book, but was split up bec

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        umm, he released The Green Mile serialized, and serialized novels have been around for a few hundred years. The book you're referring to is The Plant, but the experiment there was not serialization, it was some weird bastardization of the honor system where 75% of readers had to pay for him to keep writing.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Yes, this is exactly like saying that if you sell a book to somebody, then they're not allowed to read the last chapter until they pay the publisher $10. Its COMPLETELY LUDICROUS, and I hope people realize it.

      Ugh, I'm already boycotting Ubisoft for its draconian DRM, now I've gotta boycott EA for its content locking out and violation of property rights? The way video game studios are going, soon everything's going to be owned by either one of those two, or Activision. At least they aren't doing anything
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by hairyfeet ( 841228 )

        Then it sounds like you need to be shopping at Good Old Games [] where they treat you like an actual customer, instead of a wallet with feet. NO DRM, NO charging extra for expansion packs (in fact they are already installed and included) NO limits to how many times you can re-download something you've paid for, plus lots of extras like strategy guides and soundtracks INCLUDED. Everything "just works", no hassles with paying, or backing up installers, and new games are added almost daily.

        I'm a firm believer in

    • I would have to disagree, and add that this might actually be a good thing. They are offering extra content for the $10, not requiring it to buy the used game. You can still play the game without the extra content. Obviously, this system can be abused, but the idea itself isn't bad and may be a way where games are offering MORE to the original purchasers, and re-buyers can get the same extras for a small fee.

      Keep in mind, that they owe patches, updates only to the original purchaser, and technically, the

      • In the context of my hypothetical book:

        The ending of my book is also "extra content". I am offering "extra content" for the $10, not requiring it to buy the second-hand book.
        You can still read the book without that "extra content".

        Keep in mind, that I owe proofread copies and endings only to the original purchaser, and technically, I don't even owe that.
        Proofreading and providing corrected and finished copies over the net isn't free.(Staff, hosting servers, etc.)
        and when a book is sold to someone else, it e

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        They are offering extra content for the $10, not requiring it to buy the used game.

        Does it not strike you as slightly suspicious that a major complaint of many modern games is that you only get 6 hours of play for a £35/$50 game but can *PAY MORE* to extend the life of that game?

    • by sorak ( 246725 )

      What's worse is that I was reading the biography of Abraham Lincoln, and I got to choose which ending to buy. In the good ending, he drop-kicks the gun out of John Wilkes Booth's hands and ends up dating a former slave who looks like Halle Barry. Something just seemed wrong about the whole deal.

  • With online distribution (like steam) they could stop second hand sales altogether, and as a bonus you don't need a silo for your discs. Pretty awesome in my opinion.
    • Agreed.

      I have a silo of old games (10+ years old), but only a handful of new games with physical media.

      I play those old games exactly never.. hell, most wont even run on any of the rigs I have set up now, and even if I set up the rigs to run them, I would be immediately displeased with them. My expectations are higher now.
    • With online distribution (like steam) they could stop second hand sales altogether, and as a bonus you don't need a silo for your discs. Pretty awesome in my opinion.

      but this is aimed to console rather than pc gaming, because on pc the used market is almost non existent due to the cd key, I wouldn't trust anyone selling me his used key hoping that he wouldn't reuse it with a copy of the game, as a matter of fact battlefield bad company 2 had the vip key only in the console version while the pc version had the extra content for free without any extra key
      on console the online distribution is still very limited and it's mostly used to sell small or old games

    • I totally agree. I don't understand EA's thinking. They should do like blizzard or steam, where you are effectively buying a CD key that is tied to your account. Then you can download and play the game any time you want, and if you sell your account your selling all your games. This "$10 used game service charge" is totally absurd. you won't catch me buying any of these games, new or used...
  • They're all evil. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I don't get it when people say that EA "has changed" and that Activision is "more evil than EA". They're both just as evil as the other one is. They don't care about you, the consumer. Well they do care about gouging the consumer for all the cash that they can. We need to show them that we will not tolerate this. We have to stop playing games from these publishers. That means don't purchase it. That means don't play it at a friends house. And that means don't pirate it. Tell your friends about this and tell
  • I'll save the $10 (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mvar ( 1386987 )
    and give it to independent studios and offers like that of wolfire's "humble bundle indie" . As if awful DRM and little re-play value wasn't enough for today's games, now this. Pass..
  • by masterwit ( 1800118 ) * on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @06:54AM (#32167208) Journal

    This article should be titled:

    EA games does yet another thing to piss me off...

  • hummm.... (Score:3, Funny)

    by Tei ( 520358 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:07AM (#32167268) Journal

    Is all about fight the First Sale doctrine. Make games a "not transferable account", so you can't re-sell the game you have buy (only part of it, here).

    I wonder we will see the ones like General Motors, fighting the user car industry.

    • Sure. New cars will come equipped with a cellular connection, and every command you give to the electronics (accelerate, steer left, steer right, brake, etc.) will first have to be confirmed via the "always on" connection.

      In order to prevent pirates from driving an unauthorized copy or second-hand car, the electronics will shut down immediately if they cannot get a connection to General Motors' license server, leaving you careening down the freeway at 100. Piracy kills! :P

  • EA Sports (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lyinhart ( 1352173 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:08AM (#32167270)
    It's interesting that they're trying this experiment out with their sports video games. Sports video games released on an annual basis go down in price faster than any other genre. You can find a full boxed copy of a sports title from just a few years ago for under 5 USD. So by the time really cheap used copies hit the market, the sports season for that particular title is already over and EA is prepping for the release of the next year's edition.
    • It's not just sports games, they already did this with Dragon Age: Origins. If you buy the game new you get a code to go get an alternate party member and there's a nice piece of equipment that you can find along the way. If someone's already used that code, you have to pay $10 to get the alternate party member and the nice equipment.

      I bought the game new so it didn't affect me, but my solution to DLC in general is not to bother. Maybe I should but I why should I shell out another $7-10 for just anoth
      • right, this is the system working. They offered the game, which was bought new, and the content came with it. Then if bought used, the content was offered, and the new owner of the used game could make a second cost-benefit decision on whether the purchase was worth it. You say you would have decided it isn't, and that's a service sale that was not made. That provides incentive for the publisher to make the offer 'worth it'. Of course, they will need to be a bit careful of taking too much out of the full ga

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by flitty ( 981864 )
          Exactly. EA's project $10 worked great! However, this might be the bridge too far. Taking the multiplayer out of a used SPORTS GAME would sort of like taking the Multiplayer out of Team Fortress 2, where the majority of people will be spending their time. I don't think EA would be as dumb as to remove all multiplayer from sports games, but to add things like Season support and playoffs would ADD value to people who bought new (or bought the addon). We'll see what they finally pull out of the main game
    • But they turn the servers off of sports games as fast or faster than other titles too. Madden 2009 was going to be shutdown a few months ago but public outcry stopped that, but every iteration before that is already down.

  • Their sports games already lose their multiplayer after a year or two, yet they expect people to buy used copies and spend extra money to get a bit of content that still won't address the lack of multiplayer. I don't expect this to go very well.
  • by Secret Rabbit ( 914973 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:20AM (#32167352) Journal

    When I bought Bad Company 2 it came with a VIP code. A one time only VIP code. What ran through my mind is what if I have to format my PS3, or a firmware update requires "servicing" (see former), etc. What happens then? What about going over to a friends house to play? Etc.

    This is nothing but a money grab without any consideration for the needs and *rights* of the legal purchaser.

    • I do not know about the PS3 (I recall an article that said that a PSN purchase usually allowed 5 downloads, so people were sharing them?). On the Xbox 360, any content you purchase is "tied" to you in two ways - one, to the account (gamertag) that purchased it, and two, to the console on which it was originally purchased.

      If you are on the console on which the content was originally purchased, then anyone can use it. It is on that console, and the purchaser does not have to be signed in to access that cont
    • by khchung ( 462899 )

      What ran through my mind is what if I have to format my PS3, or a firmware update requires "servicing" (see former), etc. What happens then? What about going over to a friends house to play? Etc.

      Formatting your PS3? My guess is nothing will be lost. I think all your trophies/unlocks/etc are all stored on some server (not sure if Sony's or EA's), that's why during the 1/3/2010 date bug period, everybody that tried to connect to PSN said they lost their trophies, etc.

      You can just re-download all your PSN purchases anytime you want, so you are free to delete them on your PS3 HD, or when you replace the HD (though it would be simpler to first backup then restore to the new HD instead).

      As for playing

    • I don't know how this works on PS3 but on the Xbox 360 this is all linked to your gamer tag and you can access the content from any xbox so long as you log into XBL with your account.
    • Funny you mention the VIP code, as it's the reason they lost out on a few sales of BC2. My usual group of gaming buddies typically rent games they're on the fence about to try them out first. BC2 and its VIP code rendered multiplayer nearly unplayable for them (or so I was told; delayed matchmaking, only to be put into matches you didn't have the maps for and getting kicked, etc). So the 'on the fence' buyers opted not to buy it because of the poor experience. I ended up not buying it because the majori
  • Project Ten Dollar (Score:4, Informative)

    by Clovis42 ( 1229086 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @07:27AM (#32167388)
    This is just EA's "Project Ten Dollar" and it is not limited to just he sports games. It has already been featured in Dragon Age Origins and Mass Effect 2. Both games included content that you got for free with a code that came with the game, but you had to pay $10 to get if you bought it used.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I, for one, am grateful for all these DRM systems and DLC schemes and such as they helped me make the decision of stop buying games and the money I’m saving with that!

  • by Aceticon ( 140883 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @08:06AM (#32167572)

    One of the comments on the site with TFA is from someone that keeps his sports games for a long time because of the replayability that online playing gives.

    Consider for a moment that with the "Online Pass" at any point EA can drop (or sneakilly slow down to a crawl) all multiplayer, user created content and online community features on a game "we don't support anymore" so as to pump-up sales of the new version. What EA is doing here is to try and control the lifecycle of a game after the sale way beyond just second-hand sales.

    Basically they're doing the same as Ubisoft but with a bit of carrot, not just the stick.

    • Ummm, they already do terminate multiplayer support on last years games when the new ones launch. For example, when Madden 2010 launched, they were supposed to be terminating Madden 2009, except public outrage made them extend support for a few more months. But 2008 and earlier are all long dead. This new scheme is likely just backlash against the public for protesting the 2009 termination.
  • by pandrijeczko ( 588093 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @08:14AM (#32167614)

    The $10 voucher allows you access to stuff that 5 years ago, before DLC existed, would have been included on the original game CD.

    Sorry, but as an old man in my mid-40s with a quarter century of gaming history, modern gaming and most modern games are *CRAP*!!!

    Games used to be about entertainment that lasted a lot longer than 6 hours, was actually challenging and was fun when you got a few friends round to LAN party with you.

    Now it's all about leeching more money out of parents by encouraging kids to always buy some piece of DLC that they can brag about to their friends because they're the first "on the block" to get it - this is why morons queue at midnight for the latest game release, Harry Potter book or overpriced Apple gadget.

    Still, I've more than enough old games to play through again, load mods into or play via an emulator, as well as few nice free/Open Source games... the rest of you rabid fanbois have brought this on yourselves by buying the crap in the first place, and you're all welcome to it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      this is why morons queue at midnight for the latest game release, Harry Potter book or overpriced Apple gadget.

      You're right about two of the three, but you're wrong about Harry Potter release parties - people go to those because they want to start reading the book ASAP because they love the story and can't wait to see what comes next (you also typically get a discount if you pre-ordered). I know what their reasoning is because I went to a couple midnight releases of it and talked to the people there - I've yet to ever hear anyone brag about being the first to have a book; I've only heard people who were excited to

    • by ledow ( 319597 )

      Amen brother... and sub-posters.

      Games used to be games, now they are expensive, licensed, fabricated, single-play-through, mindless "entertainment" which consist of level-grind, or impossible-achievement-hunting in order to stretch out gameplay, where they should be focused on making the game so that the player *wants* to come back for more and set their own targets. Half-life 2 was the last released game that I consider worth my money.

      In the meantime, as you say, DOSBox, emulators, and some old St

  • play multi-player on XBox Live. What a bunch of greedy bastards. The only thing this type of behavior does is make me more selective about the games I play, for example, I'll never buy another Ubisoft game while they have that 'always online' DRM. I stopped playing Company of Heroes when they went this route until you could play with the disc installed again. Greedy bastards.

  • "We actually view the second sale market as an opportunity to develop a direct relationship with our consumers, and with Online Pass everyone has access to the same premium online services and content regardless of how and where you buy the game."

    No, you dumb twat, that's how the old model worked; this new model just sucks. If you're really that worried about making more money off used games, just add more advertisements to your sports games; I'm sure most of your fans will just find this more "realistic." "Develop a direct relationship with our consumers?" What kind of relationship would that be? The kind where they bend over and you **** their brains out?

  • Funny, I couldn't find one reference to "Walled Garden" in the comments here.

    Wonder why that's such a popular thing to repeat about Apple's iphone/ipad/ipod touch devices, but not console games?

    • Possibly because there's no free/open alternative in the console market. The PC is an open platform by comparison (depending on your OS/hardware obviously, but there are standards like USB HIDs, OpenGL, etc.) The console market has never been like this. One advantage is that it's a simpler platform, because it's fixed. This is the downside.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by canajin56 ( 660655 )
        Umm, the console market was once open. From Atari up until the Genesis and the SNES, third party developers could make games without paying a license fee if they wanted, they just didn't get the API manuals ;) Sega and Nintendo tried to lock them out unsuccessfully, and when they sued, they got thrown out of court. The Sega v. Accolade judge even threatened them with penalties over their abuse of the legal system. Until the DMCA, third-party compatibility was a right! Under the DMCA it's still technica
  • Capitalism (Score:2, Insightful)

    by jlf278 ( 1022347 )
    In capitalism, companies are given a financial incentive to compete for consumers by producing a superior product at a streamlined price. When innovation or increased productivity is no longer forseeable, the mandate for growth costs consumers by giving companies the incentive to create an inferior product.

    1. Make a fridge that lasts 30 years
    2. Expand company on sales of superior product
    3. Reduce costs and add features
    4. Eliminate remaining competition
    5. The 3 remaining fridge brands can now last 5

  • This sure beats the Steam method where buyers of used games are totally locked out, in the case of modern warfare can only be activated by one steam account and only one. They wont even unlock it even if you have the physical copy and a receipt from Amazon marketplace.

  • This plague of automatic DLC must be stopped. It has become almost expected of the major game houses to release an incomplete game, then a week or month later they sell a bunch of DLC, which was probably supposed to be part of the game in the first place. Why can I resell the content that's on the disc, but not the stuff I downloaded a week later ? How do I know the DLC wasn't originally part of the game, that some ethically-challenged pencil pusher decided to part out and charge more money ? They're sh

  • by northernfrights ( 1653323 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @10:25AM (#32168940)
    Not to worry, textures and sound effects will always be a free download if you bought the game new.
  • by Moof123 ( 1292134 ) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @12:22PM (#32170718)

    I see more and more that the commercial side wants to tighten the grip, and intentionally hobble software for all but the highest bidders.

    Meanwhile my software budget decreases out of continued disappointment and frustration.

"The number of Unix installations has grown to 10, with more expected." -- The Unix Programmer's Manual, 2nd Edition, June, 1972