Print 99 comment(s) - last by MrBlastman.. on May 12 at 11:37 AM

EA Sports, the hottest sports gamemaker around, is setting a new trend, saying you'll have to pay double to play your used games fully. You'll first have to buy the game at the store, and you'll then have to pay EA $10 to reactivate multiplayer services.  (Source: Daily Radar)
GameStop will be helping Electronic Arts implement its scheme

Electronic Arts is the king of the sports game market with hot upcoming titles including NCAA Football 11, NHL 11, Madden NFL 11, NBA 11, FIFA 11, and EA Sports MMA.  Now it has made a controversial decision concerning all of those titles -- it will lock players who buy used copies out of online multiplayer.

When it comes to sports games, a multiplayer mode is one of the chief draws.  And now that the internet allows playing with fans all over the world, online multiplayer provides massive amounts of fun.

Purchasers of a used game get locked out of that goodness.  "Online services, features and bonus content" will all be covered by a one time code, that won't work for the new purchaser.  EA describes, "You will be unable to play multiplayer online game modes or use your downloaded content in online game modes."

Used purchasers do gain access to a 7 day trial, but they will have to purchase a $10 pass if they want to continue to play online.

EA claims its all about offering its customers more, "This is an important inflection point in our business because it allows us to accelerate our commitment to enhance premium online services to the entire robust EA SPORTS online community."

Ultimately, the slick move is likely designed to help it rake in bigger profits, though.  Many purchasers will likely pay the $10 fee to renew their online access.

Retailer GameStop is partnering with EA to implement the plan.  States GameStop Corp. Chief Executive Officer, Dan DeMatteo, "GameStop is excited to partner with such a forward-thinking publisher as Electronic Arts.  This relationship allows us to capitalize on our investments to market and sell downloadable content online, as well as through our network of stores worldwide."

GameStop recent landed itself in a bit of trouble when it was caught selling used games which it claimed they were new.  Hopefully it doesn't try that again, this time around.

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RE: EA Sports...
By MrBlastman on 5/11/2010 4:55:18 PM , Rating: 2
EA can't necessarily drop the price on demand

You're right, they can't control the price of their games once they enter the wild in a dictator-like way.

They can control the supply of their games though via the price they charge to their retailers and via the MSRP. Of course, price-fixing is illegal and they can't dictate that the retailer has to sell it at any price, the MSRP goes a long way towards at least creating a ceiling (as EA will sell the software directly on their website at the MSRP, if a retailer charges more than the MSRP, customers will buy directly from EA instead).

The price they charge to their retailers on the initial release plus MSRP will go a long way. If they reduce their initial pricing from 60.00 to 50.00 going forward, all new games will debut at 50.00 (or less). The existing older titles in the wild will not automatically drop from 60.00 to 50.00, but, over time, as the old inventory is replaced via new inventory (and with games, it usually is LIFO versus FIFO).

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