The video game industry is becoming a group of money hungry capitalists. Why has this become an issue for me? Recently, I played Battlefield 3. Before I purchase games, I like to rent them from Gamefly to test them out. If I’m going to pay $59.99 for a game, I like to try it first. Battlefield 3’s single player campaign is okay, but it isn’t the best experience in the world and isn’t worth spending the money. However, Battlefield 3‘s achievement, from what I gather in the online community and from DICE and EA Games, is that the online multiplayer is top of the line and a wonder to behold.
I fire up the game on my Xbox 360 and prepare myself for some multiplayer action. Imagine my surprise when I was prompted by the game to enter my online passcode. What? I figured there must be some mistake, so I read the fine print. In order to enjoy the online multiplayer experience of Battlefield 3, you have to have a one-time use online passcode that comes with each new copy of the game. If you don’t have a new copy, you have to pony up 800 Microsoft Points, which is about $10. I see this as a money grab by EA.
The people affected by this are those who either purchased the game used or rented it. Both are huge markets. It means that in addition to paying for the Xbox Live Gold membership to Microsoft to play online, i’d have to pay an additional $10 dollars to play Battlefield 3 online. Seriously? I’m renting the game to know if I’m going to buy it or not and my purchasing decision rests on the idea that I get to try it out online first. I’m sure I’m not the only person. To me, that means that EA is leaving money on the table. What would you rather have: $59.99 from me or $10 dollars? According to their own marketing, they could easily get the $59.99 once I play multiplayer on-line. Too bad, I was looking forward to spending my money on a new game. Guess I’ll wait for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.