1. I purchased every single Bioware PC game until DA2 and SW:TOR. I want to play ME3, but enough of this nonsense. They looked at the fears that fans had when the EA sale was announced and used them as a todo list.

  2. And that’s just the Day-One launch DLC, no? You can assume there will be at least two or three $10-15 story add-ons. We might as well just say $1000 even.

    I don’t think I’ll be getting any of it any time soon, anyway. I finally played the second one fairly recently, and while it was certainly slicker than the first, I felt they pretty much cut out almost all sense of local-area exploration, which for me was a big part of the draw. No area maps filling in as you explore is such a disappointment. I assume they’re not backtracking on that development for the third?

  3. It’s a bit of a moot point for me, as I’ve just never been able to get into the ME games, and don’t expect that to change with #3, but: the principle of the thing, damn it.

    I blame EA, as with most stuff. They continually choose the most customer-hostile, short-sighted, greedy way to do things, and with any luck, they’ll go the way of the rest of the dinosaurs, in time.

  4. Other than the stuff you get in the Collector’s Edition and the Day One DLC (which is included in the CE), everything else is multiplayer unlock packs that you can also earn by playing multiplayer. (Or most likely purchase separately too. If one of the SA forum guys is to be believed, you can buy the MP unlock packs for $1/$2 each if you don’t want to spend the time earning the credits yourself.) If somebody spends $200 on a peripheral just to get an unlock code that you can also get by playing the game, that’s on them.

  5. The main problem with this as I see it is that EA is dragging Bioware’s good name through the mud. I assume EA bought them because of the high opinion people had of them and not because DA and ME were exceptional franchises. Since the purchase people have been apprehensive and pretty much each decision EA makes erodes people’s faith in the company further. Not that I can recall EA ever doing different, but I think it would behoove them to chill on trying to wring every last potential profit margin from the brand and try making a few good will gestures and at least try to preserve some faith in Bioware. Or they could just keep milking franchises to death and discarding them when they’re through.

  6. When I finished Mass Effect 2 last year, I was so excited for Mass Effect 3. I was fully planning to buy the collector’s edition for some extra swag, because I had fallen in love with the series. Now that Mass Effect 3 is finally coming out, I’ve been struggling for a couple weeks trying to decide if I want to even buy the game at all. I mean, I know that I want to play the game, but I also want to take a stand and not financially support EA, as they keep pulling all these douchebag moves. It’s not really any one thing that they’ve done, either; it’s the combination of everything.

    Paid Day 1 DLC is disappointing, but to a certain degree, I get it. There’s plenty of time between when a game goes gold and when it ships to actually develop DLC content.

    Forcing everyone to use Origin is disappointing (and really pisses me off), but when I think about it, Valve does the same thing with Steam for their games. The main difference here is that I trust Valve (as much as one trusts a business, anyway), while I think that EA executives would infect their own grandmothers’ PCs with spyware and rootkits if they thought it would make them a buck.

    Charging $60 for the game and $80 for the Collector’s edition upsets me, but I do realize that it’s pretty much the going rate for a AAA, blockbuster type of title these days.

    Refusing to sell the game on Steam at all… yeah, okay, I don’t get this one at all. EA are being jackasses with the whole Steam thing. I get that they want to maximize their profit by selling all the DLC themselves, but they’re really shooting themselves in the foot here. I mean, I really wanted to buy the Mass Effect 2 DLC, but it wasn’t on Steam, so I decided it was more hassle to buy than it was worth, and they never got that money from me. But getting back to Mass Effect 3, I do realize that it wouldn’t kill me to buy the game from Amazon or another retailer.

    Individually, every single customer-antagonistic move on the part of EA might not have been a dealbreaker. They certainly weren’t dealbreakers for many other games that I’ve bought. But all put together, it just kind of irritates me, and makes it difficult for me to decide to actually make the purchase. In fact, the game is out today, and I still haven’t decided if I’m going to pick it up on the way home, but I’m honestly leaning towards not. It just amazes me that EA’s business decisions have managed to do that for a game that I was a squealing fanboy for, ready to shell out for a collector’s edition.

  7. I hadn’t realized Origin was a requirement this time. I guess the integrated multiplayer is the rationale? (I’m curious to hear how that goes; this from Rock Paper Shotgun suggests that multiplayer and/or the iphone companion game might be required for full single-player completion? And that the multiplayer is full of microtransaction upsell attempts?)

    Thinking back a bit more, my experience with ME2 was similar to yours. Despite not being as purely enamored with it as you, I was definitely engaged (especially for the first half), and was, like you, ready to buy the DLC, but balked upon seeing that 1) it wasn’t purchasable through Steam, and 2) each bit of DLC, more than a year and a half after game release, cost more than the Steam sale price at which I bought the main game.

  8. katrel said : Forcing everyone to use Origin is disappointing (and really pisses me off), but when I think about it, Valve does the same thing with Steam for their games. The main difference here is that I trust Valve (as much as one trusts a business, anyway), while I think that EA executives would infect their own grandmothers’ PCs with spyware and rootkits if they thought it would make them a buck…Refusing to sell the game on Steam at all… yeah, okay, I don’t get this one at all. EA are being jackasses with the whole Steam thing. I get that they want to maximize their profit by selling all the DLC themselves, but they’re really shooting themselves in the foot here. I mean, I really wanted to buy the Mass Effect 2 DLC, but it wasn’t on Steam, so I decided it was more hassle to buy than it was worth, and they never got that money from me. But getting back to Mass Effect 3, I do realize that it wouldn’t kill me to buy the game from Amazon or another retailer.

    This is basically my sentiment: I just don’t trust EA. Getting Dragon Age to authenticate my legally purchased DLC took a few days of wrangling with their tech support and browsing forums to figure out how it was supposed to work. Mass Effect 2′s Cerberus network DLC stuff never worked correctly for me. At some point EA merged several separate accounts — I think my EA profile and Dragon Age profile? — which caused my login to not work for a week. And I’m not even going to mention the EA Downloader. It’s not that I object to EA’s approach in principal: it’s that I have had problems with it in practice.

    For ultimate irony, I’d also note that you can purchase Valve’s Orange Box on Origin.

  9. nobody said : I hadn’t realized Origin was a requirement this time. I guess the integrated multiplayer is the rationale?

    I’m pretty sure the rationale is “getting people to install and use Origin,” much as Half-Life 2′s requirement that people install Steam was more about getting an install base on Steam than anything intrinsic about HL2 that would require it. Mass Effect 3 is almost certainly going to sell incredibly well, and EA is leveraging that to get people used to Origin.

  10. cjelli said : I’m pretty sure the rationale is “getting people to install and use Origin”

    Oh, fully. But I figured they’d likely pose a stated rationale like ‘an Origin account is necessary to ensure a seamless user-experience while acquiring downloadable content and establishing multiplayer connections. As the multiplayer portion of the game is uniquely entwined with the single player content, an Origin account will be required for all purchasers.’

  11. nobody said : But I figured they’d likely pose a stated rationale

    EA has been rather quiet about the rationale for Origin-only games, and the pulling of games from existing outlets such as Steam. Or at least they were quiet about it when I was sort of following the issue, which I haven’t been for a while — maybe they’ve detailed it someplace? I’d love to see a statement like the one you outlined.

    There was a protracted scuffle over removing DA2 and Cryis 2 from Steam — see RPS’s coverage here and here, among other places — that just slowly faded away because no one would comment in detail.

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