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'Unfair' Battlefield 3 DLC Boycotted

Josh Clark
Battlefield 3, Boycott, DICE, DLC, EA, Games news
Battlefield 3

'Unfair' Battlefield 3 DLC Boycotted

Customers that pre-order the Battlefield 3 Limited Edition: Physical Warfare Pack are to gain an 'unfair advantage' when playing online, according to a group of vexed fans that have vowed to boycott the title until EA take notice.

Coordinating the effort through Reddit, the disgruntled gamers state that while the 'Karkand Expansion', which features four re-created Battlefield 2 maps will be available as DLC for a price, it won't feature the list of guns and ammunition that is included in the pre-order.  They make clear that this was a marketing decision made by EA, and as such do not hold DICE responsible for the move.

Somewhat controversially, Reddit have seen fit to provide the campaigners with EA employee email addresses, that enable the group to get in touch with some of the publisher's more influential personnel.

The group have also taken issue with the idea of paying for maps that will be available on day one, citing Battlefield Bad Company 2's free DLC policy in the process.  They submit to the idea that paid DLC is a way of companies recouping lost profits from trade-ins but also state that PC games cannot be used second hand, and as such, PC gamers should be provided with free DLC regardless.

It's hard to say at this point whether the campaign will have any effect on the publisher's marketing strategy, but we'll keep our eyes on the story.  What do you think?  Are EA being a little too overzealous in their pre-order push, or is the incentive justified?  Let us know in the comments below.

UPDATE:  In response to the concerns raised by the campaigners, EA have released a small Q&A in an attempt to justify the strategy, which you can find over on the Battlefield blog.  We'll attempt to get an answer straight from the horse's mouth and keep you all in the loop.


Add a comment14 comments
Phil  Jun. 13, 2011 at 14:55

Yes I do think EA are being unfair - I preordered from them direct before this 'super special' pack was available so now I stuck without these weapons (granted it was £17 (PC) - thanks HUKD). Just hoping they can be unlocked after so many hours play?

Josh Clark  Jun. 13, 2011 at 15:00

Hmm that's a tough one, can't exactly re-pre-order if you got such a good price. I think making them unlockable would undermine the incentive for pre-ordering, so it seems unlikely.

That being said, it's hard to determine whether the campaigners would be happy even if they included the weapons in the 'Karkand Pack', or whether they're actually just looking for free DLC...

ali  Jun. 13, 2011 at 18:00

there should be a complete boycott on all ea games, there's no excuse for being this greedy. don't they make enough money from selling games at full price that they have to sink their greedy paws in to the pre-owned market and it's not just that though, the games they sell at full price half the content is locked and they have the cheek to ask you to pay for it and not forgetting the 'online pass' what the fuck is that shit if not pure and utter greed a petition should be started to urge the government to investigate this bull

Grumpy Man  Jun. 14, 2011 at 00:55

This seems to be EA's way of doing things lately. I recently bought Fifa 11 pre-owned only to get home and find out the one-time use 'online pass' had already been used and I was unable to do anything online. Not even play friends! Regardless of whether they recoup the 'losses' is immaterial as the price of EA games new is usually set around £35-£40.

For a company that is making so much profit it can't be justified constantly charging for everything extra.

Will Hennessy  Jun. 14, 2011 at 08:23

Ali, stop talking rubbish you act like EA are the only company to do this infact weren't THQ the first people with the UFC games? EA have improved vastly over the years and you can almost guarentee an EA title will have a good quality to it.

First day dlc for Battlefield 3, have they even said if this is payable ?

Get a grip and vote with your wallet if your so bothered, whats the betting we seeing "Battlefield 3" on your gamertags come November.

Late  Jun. 14, 2011 at 11:50

lol @ boycotting all EA games.
It's crappy that it's becoming the norm that additional content needs to be bought for a lot of games if you're to get full value, but normal economic forces are working on the system. If folk are getting good value then they'll pay for it. If they're not then they won't.

Personally, I'd MUCH rather pay £64* for Call of Duty or Battlefield than pay £30* for most other games - because I get more value for money.

It's probably typical to get around 15 hours entertainment from a £30 game. That's fair enough. I don't mind paying £2 an hour for a good time. (Sometimes you might get a lot more hours outta the game. All too often you get an hour or two and then the game's gathering dust.)
With COD and BF I'm more likely to get hundreds of hours of entertainment. Say 300 hours (COD is usually closer to 400) for £64. That's approximately 21p per hour.
Twenty one pence per hour, for top notch entertainment? Count me in!

*The £64 is based on £40 up front, and 3 lots of £8 for DLC. Not many would end up paying that much, as most of us can find a good deal thanks to HUKD and the like, but for the sake of argument I'm putting prices up here. The £30 is what I, and probably most other folk, expect to pay for the average game - either in a launch day offer or by waiting a few weeks.

Wills boyfriend  Jun. 14, 2011 at 11:58

Will, stop talking rubbish, EA titles have a good quality to it?

BS. EA titles are the same regurgitated BS franchises shoved down our throats yearly, with barely any originality or innovation ever shown at all. The million guitar hero's, the upteen COD's and FIFA's, it seems like it is company policy to just exploit the muppets like you who are sold on every little cliquey thing that they do.

DLC is meant to be 'extra functionality' that the developers work on, above the main core gameplay offering. If the DLC has been made alongside the core game, is ready with the core game, and is intentionally being marketed as 'additional content' then that is absolute horse p**s, and smacks of them exploiting their customers.

Late's dad  Jun. 14, 2011 at 12:08

21p per hour?

I find that quite expensive, seeing as thats 1p per hour more than your mum charged!

Just because you play a game more, doesn't mean its worth more. MW3 will be the same regurgitated rubbish, with minimal development work actually done on it (just take the last one, change a few guns, add a few maps, alter the kill streaks a little, provide a pathetic four hour single player campaign, DONE!).

Quite how they can justify £64 for that (800 points a map pack, when half of them took zero work and are just old maps they've shoved in it? Getthef**kouttahere!) is insane, when there are developments like skyrim, that are complete 100% new builds, taking years of developments, that they will sell for the exact same price.

StauntonLick  Jun. 14, 2011 at 12:09

The point is that, if you buy a pre-owned game NONE of your money goes to the developer. If the developer is to survive, they have to find other ways of making money. We're seeing some fairly flaky business ideas being played out at the moment, but in no way is it unfair for the developer to attempt to make money from pre-owned copies of their game, especially if that player goes on to use the game's online services (which require moderation, server maintenance, updates, etc).

A large part of the blame can be placed at the feet of the retailers who push pre-owned games more than new copies as there is a much higher margin on them - for instance, the ludicrous concept of pre-ordering pre-owned games.

I feel that the traditional model of pay-once-play-forever is outmoded in an age of digitally-deliverable content and multiplayer. Games now require far more upkeep to maintain their online components compared to the largely single-player/split-screen offerings of the past. It is only right that the payment model be updated in line with our more modern expectations.

StauntonLicks dad  Jun. 14, 2011 at 12:41

"The point is that, if you buy a pre-owned game NONE of your money goes to the developer."

So? This happens with everything else in life, so why do games developers thing they're so far above it? DVD's get watched/passed round friends, music albums get passed around mates, old laptops get handed down to others, and so on. It happens with everything, thats the way life is, it has always happened and always will happen. Developers should stop QQ'ing, they make an absolute fortune already and are just out to exploit us for absolutely every penny they can.

"Games now require far more upkeep to maintain their online components compared to the largely single-player/split-screen offerings of the past."

BS. MW2 only ever got about three ish gameplay 'patches', and those were only to fix massive game breaking bugs when they became known about to the general public. None of the smaller bugs/exploits that weren't game breaking have ever been fixed, even after them being public forever. Those fixes must have been the best part of an hours work each.

Then there were two map packs, that were massively overcharged (1200 points for three new maps? joke).

Compare that to say, Diablo 2 on the PC. It retailed for £30 ish, and for that the developers constantly worked on patches, balances, updates, new content, etc. They must have released over a hundred updates in one form or another. Despite the game having not sold as many units as MW2, and almost certainly having cost a lot more to develop than the weak rehash of MW1.

Matt Gardner  Jun. 14, 2011 at 12:51

'Developers should stop QQ’ing, they make an absolute fortune already and are just out to exploit us for absolutely every penny they can.'

I think you might have developers and publishers mixed up there. If devs were recording artists, publishers would be the record label.

Matt Gardners Gardener  Jun. 14, 2011 at 13:29

Yes, sorry, I did mean publisher, however as this fantastic board doesn't have an edit button, I had no chance of changing it before your exceptionally valid and valuable contribution

Late  Jun. 14, 2011 at 16:19

If the demand is there then the suppliers are perfectly justified in putting their prices up (or incorporating subscriptions, or dlc). Why shouldn't they? They're here to make money.
Of course they'll get less customers by doing so, but they aren't doing it on a whim. They know people will pay it, and their analysts will have calculated the increased revenue per unit will more than cover the lost unit sales.

I'd rather pay less, naturally. I have very little money, and can't afford to squander it. But we're talking about something that's exceptional value for money, here.

"Just because you play a game more, doesn’t mean its worth more." Of course it does. If you get more out of something then it's value is intrinsically higher.

Should I close with a "your mamma" "joke"? I'd hate to let the side down by not rising to your lofty levels of hilarity.

SUpermaN  Jun. 14, 2011 at 19:20

Since diablo 2 cost 20 time less to develop it should really have been £2.50 TBH

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