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?