Fans attack EA over exclusive Battlefield 3 content

By on June 13, 2011, 6:28 PM

EA has been working overtime to capture the hearts and wallets of PC gamers with its upcoming Battlefield title, and we've seen nothing but overwhelming enthusiasm for its arrival -- until now. Over the weekend, the company announced that it will offer the "Battlefield 3: Physical Warfare Pack" with an exclusive gun, an early unlockable, a weapon mod and ammunition through select retailers around the globe.

Gamers who buy the Physical Warfare Pack will receive exclusive access to the Type 88 light machine gun with a bipod, Battlefield 3's only sniper rifle flash suppressor (for the SKS rifle), as well as armor piercing flechette shells for the DAO-12 semi-automatic shotgun. Physical Warfare Pack customers will also get day-one access to the DAO-12 shotgun, whereas everyone else will have to unlock it via gameplay.

There is a lot of confusion surrounding the "Back to Karkand" expansion pack, which contains remastered versions of four Battlefield 2 maps including Strike at Karkand, Gulf of Oman and the Sharqi Peninsula. All Limited Edition pre-orders (even non-Physical Warfare Packs) will receive the "Back to Karkand" DLC. Everyone else will be able to buy the DLC separately, though pricing and availability are unknown.

After learning about the exclusive content and its limited availability, gamers besieged EA's forum -- many of them threatening to cancel their preorder. One thread has 64 pages of posts and a poll that shows 93% of visitors disapprove of the exclusive content. Even Minecraft creator "Notch" chimed in: "When I make a movie, it will have different exclusive scenes added to it depending on what cinema you go to."

EA has responded to the angry mob with a FAQ squelching concerns about unfair multiplayer action. The publisher said Battlefield 3's exclusive content has been "specifically chosen not to be overpowered or imbalanced or break the game in any way." Although company said it believes in rewarding its loyal customers with special offers, many gamers disagree with "dividing" the playerbase. Where do you stand?




User Comments: 62

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Kralnor said:

How is EA "rewarding its loyal customers with special offers" by offering Physical Warfare Pack through select retailers?

Regardless, I don't play any of the Battlefield titles, so I really couldn't care less

princeton princeton said:

Cancelled my pre-order just based on the fact that they tried it in the first place. I don't care if they reverse it. Back to karkand and that physical warfare pack should have been free in the first place, if Valve can turn a profit making games without charging for maps and weapons than EA can make a profit giving them away free as well.

The gaming industry is going to collapse when consumers start voting with their wallets. Also what Notch said was pretty damn funny.

Cota Cota said:

About time us gamers notice how stupid is this exclusive content system, even if its not "overpowered or imbalanced" the fact is that they are giving that content to a single part of gamers, what i would had done whit that tracer on BFBC2 the day it came up online wich btw it was OP at early unlock.

Reminds me to WoW and those people who could get in game items just by paying or buying those cards and going to their overpriced conventions.

pcnthuziast said:

Honestly I'm not as put off as many are. Seems pretty trivial really and I won't let it stop me from getting in the game from jump. Will I pay for said content? No. Do I care that others will have it early? No.

Anshrew said:

pcnthuziast said:

Honestly I'm not as put off as many are. Seems pretty trivial really and I won't let it stop me from getting in the game from jump. Will I pay for said content? No. Do I care that others will have it early? No.

It's not that you get the content early, it's that the stuff in the physical warfare pack, with the exception of the DAO-12 shotgun is ONLY obtainable through the physical warfare pack.

This isn't just a thing where you have to wait to get access to the items, if you don't get the physical warfare pack, you will never have those items.

Guest said:

I approve of Notch's message. *Thumbs up

Guest said:

It's just a game people, geez. There are better things to do with your time and money. It's especially not worth getting pissed off about..

pcnthuziast said:

Even so, I can live without a few guns/items. I think the game will have enough to offer that they won't be missed.

Guest said:

Cancelled my pre-order just based on the fact that they tried it in the first place. I don't care if they reverse it. Back to karkand and that physical warfare pack should have been free in the first place, if Valve can turn a profit making games without charging for maps and weapons than EA can make a profit giving them away free as well.

Ever heard of the Team Fortress 2 store? Yes it is true... Valve does it too.

I also disagree with EA and/or DICE's decision to make this move. This type of stuff is exactly what turned me away from the Call of Duty series in the first place.

Having said that, it will probably not prevent me from buying the game, but I can honestly say that I am no longer excited about it, and I have lost respect for EA & DICE.

I am more concerned about Battlefield 3 never appearing on Steam. EA just released the Origin, which is basically a direct competitor to Steam. I am fine with EA releasing a product that is a direct competitor to Steam, but I have already chosen Steam has my digital store of choice, and I do not want to have to download Origin JUST for Battlefield 3.

Thats like having Microsoft Office 2010, and OpenOffice installed on the same machine. Makes no sense.

Guest said:

This may be sort of beside the point of this article, but when I read the headline, the first thought in my head was "Oh no, not another console exclusive!" I am so sick of these companies giving exclusive DLC to the consoles and not PC.

Anyways, this time it's a new flavor of dumb, isn't it? Why don't they make all the DLC available for everyone and for all possible platforms? It might, oh, I dunno, maximize sales? Don't they know how to make money? Don't they wanna make money no more? Bah!

I don't understand why people whine about paying a little extra for DLC. I'd pay double the asking price for good DLC for my favorite games, and I'd do so with a smile on my face. I'm not rich or nothing, but I'd rather pay to extend the joy I get out of playing my favorite games than gamble that money on new games which often turn out to be a disappointment (like Darkspore, epic fail).

-RayRay

Scshadow said:

The gaming industry never stops trying to find ways to extract money. No longer is there companies that truly have a passion for putting out a good game and having it enjoyed by the consumers. Its about producing it as fast as possible and finding any way to nickel and dime suckers that can afford it(or not afford it but buy it anyway). Its never about making a living and always about making a stack.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Guest said:

I am more concerned about Battlefield 3 never appearing on Steam. EA just released the Origin, which is basically a direct competitor to Steam. I am fine with EA releasing a product that is a direct competitor to Steam, but I have already chosen Steam has my digital store of choice, and I do not want to have to download Origin JUST for Battlefield 3.

They probably won't cut off Steam yet, but I'd bet that they will offer extra stuff that they won't offer on Steam in order to get people to buy from EA directly.

EA must pay something to Steam, even if only a few percent of the price. Cut out Steam, more money to EA.

Guest said:

it's all going the way of the console...

one step forward... two steps back...

Guest said:

"One thread has 64 pages of posts and a poll that shows 93% of visitors disapprove of the exclusive content."

Ninety freakin three percent opposed, and they STILL want to tell you they won't change it? That does not make sense at all. The obvious part is, if they took out the launch day weapons and maps it would not hurt the game one bit. This news comes now, because they believe the hype is so big that nothing they do could break it, but according to those 64 pages, they are WRONG. If that's not stupidity, I don't know what is. Pretty sure the core gamers DICE speaks of are the ones that go through the trouble of expressing their feelings on their publishers' forum, so again they are dismissing everything we say.

DICE and EA = Steve Jobs' successor.

Vrmithrax Vrmithrax, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Guest said:

"One thread has 64 pages of posts and a poll that shows 93% of visitors disapprove of the exclusive content."

Ninety freakin three percent opposed, and they STILL want to tell you they won't change it? That does not make sense at all.

Well, to be fair, that's 93% of the people who were probably already mad, drawn to that particular thread. And, being mad to begin with, people are more likely to click the "you suck" option in polls - haters love to hate, and all that. The posts and poll are completely subjective and pretty much meaningless. Expecting a reaction to a single thread full of angry people is rather naive.

That said, I'm glad the clamor has occurred. Nice to see players and consumers standing up against greedy self-serving practices that are being played off as "benefits" to select customers, when it's really just all about money and giving certain "preferred" retail outlets an advantage over the rest. It's about time.

ramonsterns said:

Not like complaining about it will do anything. Most gamers are too stupid to understand that you vote with your wallets, not your spirit. More than likely it will end up with people buying the game anyways just like they did with MW2.

Had gamers actually boycotted MW2 for being the casualized, cashcow that it was, gaming would be rather different today and the idea of $60 PC games and pay per month extra bullshit would be non-existent.

Guest said:

Call it being blown out of proportion, call it a viral misunderstanding, call it what you wish - however, I believe there is a sound argument from the 'angry customer' side regarding the Vanilla BF3 DLC exclusivity issue.

The reason why BF2 was so successful was because BF2 Vanilla had all DLC FREE FOR EVERYONE - it was a massive community where everyone fought hard to level up and there were NO exclusive weapons- everyone was after the same ball so to speak. Then, MUCH later, they released mods with special content that costed money: (Special Forces, Armored Fury, etc.) This was generally accepted by the community simply because the Vanilla version of BF2 was getting old - people had been maxing out on unlocks, etc. There was no more surprise factor.

The fact that BF3 Vanilla is being released right off the bat with special exclusive content is absolutely ridiculous for people who do not want to spend money NOW with SPECIFIC retailers. One fan had a good comment - he said, "Why should I spend $60 and then end up not having the same amount of content of someone who paid the same price."

I strongly believe this little trick that EA is pulling is degrading to the customer - "buy now, and also buy from this retailer if you want to see and utilize extra content." removes the customer's sense of freedom and fairness on the battlefield.

In my opinion, I agree with the Boycott until something is done about this. At least allowing people to unlock the exclusive content when leveling up. Even if it were level 50 before I could obtain the 'non-advantageous' weapons, I would still be happy. The fact they are unobtainable if I order from someone else is unfortunately frustrating and heartbreaking.

jetkami said:

ramonsterns said:

Not like complaining about it will do anything. Most gamers are too stupid to understand that you vote with your wallets, not your spirit. More than likely it will end up with people buying the game anyways just like they did with MW2.

Had gamers actually boycotted MW2 for being the casualized, cashcow that it was, gaming would be rather different today and the idea of $60 PC games and pay per month extra bullshit would be non-existent.

AMEN!

Guest said:

I don't understand, why cancel the preorder if it comes with the dlc? Forgive me if I missed something.

Guest said:

I don't understand, why cancel the preorder if it comes with the dlc? Forgive me if I missed something.

Because the PWP preorder is only available at two retail stores. If you preordered with some other store you will not be able to get those items, ever, even for money.

Guest said:

At guest above me..

$60 BF3 (pre-ordered) at one store

includes Back to Karkand

$60 BF3 (pre-ordered) at another store

includes Back to Karkand

and

exclusive content

unfair to the eyes of the 93% who disagreed with this exclusivity. for some it won't matter because they get the semi-auto shotty via gameplay. i think the the flash suppressor is exclusive? don't know about the T88 LMG w/ bipod? (somebody correct me)

for some it's saddening to the eyes that they're are splitting the community by store exclusivity.

Guest said:

You ask why complain if you are getting the DLC? Simple, it isn't fair. There are people who are not so egocentric that they only worry about one upping everyone else. The battlefield community (for the most part) seems to be more interested in balance and equality. Who can think that is a bad thing? We need more people concerned about their neighbor in this world than less. Your comment about not complaining since you are getting the DLC disheartens me.

Guest said:

Cancelled my pre-order for reasons I'm sure you know or can find easily online, here is the link to cancel your pre-order:

http://support.ea.com/app/ask/accountType/1

If you use the live chat system just tell them you want to cancel your pre-order. Just tell them you're cancelling it so you can get the Physical Warfare Pack later, this way the support person can cover his own *** and help you get your refund.

Guest said:

It's because most if not all DLC is purposely taken out of games to be sold later as "add on bonuses". Its extreme BS that is only prevalent today because of console tards putting up with it for so long. PC gamers would have never stood for that sh*t back when consoles didnt saturate the market. Every single DLC should just be part of the original game.

Guest said:

I think a point that is being missed is these unlocks are PERMANENTLY exclusive: once the game has been released, these weapons will never go back on sale as DLC according to EA. If it was going to be sold later people would just be bitching about bad practices by EA etc, but these will always be exclusive, so if it turns out you gt a different set elsewhere then unless you buy 2 different copies it is impossible to get all of the items available in the game.

Guest said:

if they want to beat COD then they better not be dodgy and provide exclusives. The Limited Edition map pack is fine as long as they release it free later, but the exclusive weapons is unfair. At this rate they need to stop being greedy or they'll end up like Activision.

Guest said:

not true the shotgun is available in game

Guest said:

all you lot complaining are obviously rubbish at the game

Guest said:

Honestly it doesn't bother me. The consumer's sense of entitlement these days is disgusting. You aren't entitled to the DLC or the game for that matter. You have the opportunity to own the content provided to you by DICE/EA. It took a lot of time and effort to create the game and the DLC. If they feel they should charge for it, so be it. Anybody else that has an issue with it obviously doesn't understand Capitalism.

Guest said:

Continuing from above, who cares if there are exclusives depending where you buy it. It isn't a big deal, and it wont break the game. If it does, it will receive balance.

ramonsterns said:

Guest said:

Honestly it doesn't bother me. The consumer's sense of entitlement these days is disgusting. You aren't entitled to the DLC or the game for that matter. You have the opportunity to own the content provided to you by DICE/EA. It took a lot of time and effort to create the game and the DLC. If they feel they should charge for it, so be it. Anybody else that has an issue with it obviously doesn't understand Capitalism.

ExcuuuuuUse me, princess. I'm so sorry for having standards. Maybe I should just hand over my money for nothing in return. This is how capitalism works, no?

I don't have a sense of entitlement. I paid for a game, I expect my game in full, not to be chopped up into bits and sold at later dates or in pre-order bullshit. I'm not some drone who believes everything I'm told. They did the same with Dragon Age DLC and ME2 DLC, they cut it out of the game and release it later as "new content", which is total bullshit fed to you so you won't question why they're charging you $5-$10 for 1 hour of gameplay and recycled items (Return to Ostagar anyone?). EDIT: And with the armor packs in ME2? You could clearly tell that some of the pieces missing from the modular sets were released later in DLC.

I don't trust EA in the least, they're just the kettle calling the Activision pot black. They're no better than they are and I wouldn't be surprised if they adopt the same pay per month crap that MW3 is trying to peddle if it succeeds. They did it with the $60 price tags for PC games.

Guest said:

What I don't understand is why people are getting mad at EA for the DLC being exclusive to certain retailers, you do understand that EA doesn't just give the DLC to two retailers and call it quits the retailers themselves pay big bucks to make it exclusive to their store. Not only that but if you really want the DLC just pre order the game, stop bitching that you will have to pay for the DLC when you have a few months to pre order the game, there is no reason for people to be complaining, quit blaiming EA for retailers paying to make certain items exclusive to their store, and quit bitching about paying money for DLC you can still get in when it is still free.

CraftyDiam0nd said:

My stance on this kind of thing is that if it was made during the main production of the game it should be in the final game, no matter where you buy it. You wouldn't buy a book and be missing some pages just because you decided to buy it at a different retailer, or you get different endings depending on which version you buy. I'm fine with DLC as long as it's good, worth the money, and made AFTER the initial game is finished.

EA were looking good for a change against MW3's stupid elite service and now they've ruined themselves again by doing all this exclusive and micro-DLC stuff...

ramonsterns said:

Guest said:

What I don't understand is why people are getting mad at EA for the DLC being exclusive to certain retailers, you do understand that EA doesn't just give the DLC to two retailers and call it quits the retailers themselves pay big bucks to make it exclusive to their store. Not only that but if you really want the DLC just pre order the game, stop bitching that you will have to pay for the DLC when you have a few months to pre order the game, there is no reason for people to be complaining, quit blaiming EA for retailers paying to make certain items exclusive to their store, and quit bitching about paying money for DLC you can still get in when it is still free.

It's called being a sellout. This is what most people are angry about.

Guest said:

Sell out how, god forbid a company is in for money, what it comes down to and you can't deny it is if you were selling a product and there were accessories for said product would you not want to make it exclusive to a store that is willing to pay you big money for it or release it to all stores for no money, if you are going to say all stores your a dip **** who doesn't understand business and you are just trying to save face. Personally i understand what they are doing here I don't care what store the DLC became exclusive to because unlike some who are getting angry i waited until they announced what special pre order packages you will get, and like a smart consumer i waited to pre order from a store who would get the best special items included in my pre order.

ramonsterns said:

Guest said:

Sell out how, god forbid a company is in for money.

It's called principles. Just because you can go outside and sell yourself for money doesn't mean you should.

jonelsorel said:

I think everyone paying for the game, regardless whether it's on Steam or a physical game box - should be on a level playing field. EA's just not learning from their own mistakes..

Guest said:

"Although the company said it believes in rewarding its loyal customers with special offers..."

What about the loyal customers in the forums that are unhappy?

Guest said:

Gee, I hope EA doesn't get hacked over this. wink wink, nudge nudge.

ramonsterns said:

Guest said:

"Although the company said it believes in rewarding its loyal customers with special offers..."

What about the loyal customers in the forums that are unhappy?

What exactly is a loyal costumer to EA?

According to EA it's the first sucker who spends money on them. They did this with an offer, where if you bought Dragon Age 2, you got Mass Effect 2 for free, and the advertisement said exactly the same, "reward its most loyal fans". (Source: [link]

Here's a newsflash EA, your loyal customers already own your games, I threw you $50 each for DA and ME2, because I pre-ordered them and then what do you do? You release another version of the game where all of the DLC is free to anyone who wasn't sucker enough to buy your game on release day.

Then you have the nerve to call people who don't own the games "loyal fans" and ban the people who disagree with you from your forums? (And then they tried to ban from their games as well, but backtracked and undid it, blaming it on a "bug"

Does this make sense to anyone else?

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

scshadow said:

The gaming industry never stops trying to find ways to extract money. No longer is there companies that truly have a passion for putting out a good game and having it enjoyed by the consumers. Its about producing it as fast as possible and finding any way to nickel and dime suckers that can afford it(or not afford it but buy it anyway). Its never about making a living and always about making a stack.

Not really the developers fault rather more then the publishers... EA is a joke.

Guest said:

who cares about the shotgun still kick *** with what ever weapons are available although ill be more likely be in a helicopter or jet kicking *** most of the time........nothing can put me off this game but i am getting sick of dlc content paying too much for what should be included in the beginning should be one version unless you want a mod packand join a seperate game with other gamers using same mod pack.

stewi0001 stewi0001 said:

I hope they fire who ever thought of this dumb Idea

Guest said:

Just to point out a fact, that is no longer the case. In Team Fortress 2, valve has set up a sort of "micro transaction" system, where you can buy weapons, among other things. True, these weapons are attainable by merely playing through the game; however, they are awarded at random times and are randomly selected (Sometimes they end up being an item you actually have to pay to redeem.) Regardless, Valve has come to this result as well, and I wouldn't be surprised if somewhere down the road we saw the same system implemented again.

Guest said:

RUMOR MILL : Ea to charge for Multiplayer Soon.

Darkshadoe Darkshadoe said:

If people would actually make a stand and not buy the game, EA would be your b*tch. I'm not buying it..but for a totally different reason..I'm not interested in it. If enough people vote with their dollars, you will make a difference. Good Luck

Darkshadoe Darkshadoe said:

ramonsterns said:

Guest said:

Sell out how, god forbid a company is in for money.

It's called principles. Just because you can go outside and sell yourself for money doesn't mean you should.

I totally agree ramonsterns. These game companies are worse than used car salesmen. They try every dirty trick they can to get you to buy their product.

Adhmuz Adhmuz, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I may only be one, but I will never buy another EA title again, they have been releasing garbage game after garbage game year after year and yet people still hand money over to them. Everyone remember APB? Well I was lucky enough to get a $20 coupon valid on the EA store (Yeah thanks, EA store...) So I bought the new Hot Pursuit with hope that Criterion made it right. Sadly EA put their useless little fingers into it and messed it up to the point where its not even fun to play. I've personally worked at EA as a tester and can confirmed they take the easy way out instead of fixing the issue at hand. Now they seem to be ruining the Battlefield franchise with their make as much money as possible off their consumers tactics. The pre-Order map pack was nice, no issue with that. Except for the fact that it's not on steam and as the other comments said having two game clients is more than annoying. But now you have to find a store that has been selected by EA to get exclusive content that will not be available otherwise. With all these **** hole hackers floating about why not go after EA? That would be fun to see...

Guest said:

I think people need to get a grip to be honest. I laugh my backside off when I hear people whinge about paying $60 (+5-10 for DLC) for a multiplayer game. In Australia, the price of pc games has DECREASED over the last five years (can't speak for the rest of the world). So ripping ppl off is not a game publishers objective. Secondly, I personally have over 500 hours on BC2. My friends have at least 100 hours, but lets say for arguments sake a minimum of 50 hours over the life of the game. Someone tell me how much it would cost to get that amount of entertainment time at the movies, or with legally bought DVD's and music. Yeh sure as **** not 60 dollars. Well an average movie goes for two hours, at say 10 dollar per movie. Yep 250 dollars, for the same time and not even interactive. Not that you would go watch 25 movies in a year lol but still, get some perspective.

Even if they charge for DLC, you have the right NOT to buy it, and I can tell you now it won't break game play. You can have your shitty bipod all you want when I nade your proned ***. Or your silenced sniper when my one hit sniper defeats your two hit kill, lol. Also, I doubt this was an executive decision from DICE but rather EA, but that's just my opinion.

Anyways, nerd rage more.

Guest said:

Call of duty mw3

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