EA's Online Passes Have a Limited Shelf Life

The Wooster

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Jul 15, 2008
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EA's Online Passes Have a Limited Shelf Life


The activation codes for EA's 'Online Pass' enabled games can expire, leaving gamers without access to a games' online features until they contact EA support.

As one NeoGAF [http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=454078] user found out when he broke open his brand-spanking-new copy of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit for the 360. He couldn't access the game's online features because the included activation code had gone the way of bell-bottoms,Windows 98 and 'the cake is a lie' references. When he posted his grievance on the NeoGAF forums, several other users came forward claiming they'd encountered the same issue. A clause allowing EA to do this was subsequently discovered in the Online Pass's EULA, and then it was torches and pitchforks all round.

EA's response to an inquiry from Joystiq was hardly enlightening. Apparently, as a rule, no Online Pass should expire, except those that do. For example, Dragon Age 2's online pass expires on March 31, 2012 according to EA's EULA description, and will require players to re-download the pass, or acquire a new one from EA support. EA stresses that acquiring a new pass is absolutely free.

Adding yet another hoop for consumers to jump through to an already unpopular system seems like an odd move, even for EA, so I'd wait for more clarification on the issue before setting your rage dials to 'incomprehensible.' We'll keep you updated on any further developments.

Source: Joystiq [http://www.joystiq.com/2011/12/03/ea-online-pass-can-expire-for-new-game-purchases-but-it-should/]



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Kopikatsu

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May 27, 2010
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Isn't Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit a really old game?

I mean, I've noticed that recent games I've bought had expiration dates, but they expire like half a year from when I got them.

Hm...I thought maybe they'd do it to 'recycle' codes, but apparently there are 20,922,789,888,000-ish unique codes that can be generated on the PS3 alone.

So! I have no idea.
 

therandombear

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Old news is old?

When I bought Dragon Age: Origins it said the same thing there with the Shale DLC and Dragon Armour DLC which came with it.

Let me see if I can find it. :p

Yup, back of Origins says: "One time use code available with full retail purchase. Expires April 30, 2010"
 

The Wooster

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Kopikatsu said:
Isn't Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit a really old game?

I mean, I've noticed that recent games I've bought had expiration dates, but they expire like half a year from when I got them.

Hm...I thought maybe they'd do it to 'recycle' codes, but apparently there are 20,922,789,888,000-ish unique codes that can be generated on the PS3 alone.

So! I have no idea.
Nahh the new Hot Pursuit was released just over a year ago.
 

The Wooster

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therandombear said:
Old news is old?

When I bought Dragon Age: Origins it said the same thing there with the Shale DLC and Dragon Armour DLC which came with it.

Let me see if I can find it. :p

Yup, back of Origins says: "One time use code available with full retail purchase. Expires April 30, 2010"
Yep, but those are DLC codes as opposed to Online Pass codes. Separate thing.
 

Burst6

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Aww i had my rage dial all oiled and everything. I even got my special expensive oil when i saw the title.


Why would it expire if you can just ask customer support for free? Do they want to make it as annoying as possible so the lazier people won't actually claim it?
 

therandombear

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Grey Carter said:
therandombear said:
Old news is old?

When I bought Dragon Age: Origins it said the same thing there with the Shale DLC and Dragon Armour DLC which came with it.

Let me see if I can find it. :p

Yup, back of Origins says: "One time use code available with full retail purchase. Expires April 30, 2010"
Yep, but those are DLC codes as opposed to Online Pass codes. Separate thing.
Ah, herp derp. Reading is hard. My fault then, as you were. ;)

DLC=/=Season Pass, that sucks.
 

BRex21

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You would think that EA might someday want to try to tone down all the negative press they get, I understand sometimes you need to shut down servers when its costing you too much, but this seems like just putting an arbitrary deadline on things to add another step.
 

XT inc

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Is EA's design philosophy "How far can we go to annoy our customers before they actually do something about it"?

Between origin, this, forum to game library bans, and years of just dick moves that have helped sully gaming, project 10 dollar, activation codes, selling cheat codes and unlocks.

How did we as consumers allow this to happen?
 

synobal

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They expire because they go bad like fruit right? oh wait they are a digital good that never goes bad? Gasp then why would EA do this? Wait this is a shameless money grab, because in the end they don't care about customers only the money in your wallet, and why should they worry about repeat business? Between them and Activision who else would you buy shooter 2012 from?
 

The Wooster

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Grey Carter said:
...Adding yet another hoop for consumers to jump through to an already unpopular system seems like an odd move, even for EA, so I'd wait for more clarification on the issue before setting your rage dials to 'incomprehensible.'...
Too [COPYRIGHTED] late!

Seriously! What the [COPYRIGHTED] is EA smoking to come up with this [COPYRIGHTED]?

Yet another reason never to buy another [COPYRIGHTED] game from EA
 

Catalyst6

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Apr 21, 2010
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EA's putting an expiration date on numbers? What do they think we're going to do with it, horde them all and wait until the Great Dragon Age Scarcity of 2014 before scalping them?

Really, EA. I respect that you're trying to protect your IP. And yes, I support you in the sense that Valve isn't the only boy that's allowed his own D2D game service. I even defended the codes since I'm a PC gamer and seeing console gamers having to sit through the same crap I have for years fills me with a schadenfreude-tastic joy. But this... this is just bad.
 
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One day soon, there's going to be some positive news about EA.

I hope.

It does raise serious questions though about "What do their PR people actually do?"

Are they going the Ubisoft route and just throwing PR to the wind?
 

Sjakie

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I know its a big nono to wish certain people would drop dead, so im just gonna wish that whomever thinks up all these stupid ideas at EA gets crotchrot...


and then hit by a truck.
 

Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.
I'm not surprised they expire, but its totally bullshit that they do, if anything drives people to piracy its shit like this.
 

MolotoK

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EA has yet to understand that treating customers right and making money are not exclusive options.

Would have bought Battlefield 3 if it wasn't for Origin.
 

Epona

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XT inc said:
Is EA's design philosophy "How far can we go to annoy our customers before they actually do something about it"?

Between origin, this, forum to game library bans, and years of just dick moves that have helped sully gaming, project 10 dollar, activation codes, selling cheat codes and unlocks.

How did we as consumers allow this to happen?
Gamers are quick to defend the industry in the name of "they have a right to protect their game against pirates, used buyers and rude people on the forums". Selling cheat codes is just greedy.

Imagine if Bethesda sold the developers console to 360 and PS3 gamers.
 

BabyRaptor

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These people really don't like to make things easy on the folks who hand them money, do they? Jesus.