The Online Pass was something intended to reward those who purchased new copies of games and punish those who picked up used copies. It was met with disdain by the community and the press as it was needed to enjoy the full game, meaning those who bought a copy and then some how lost their pass were then punished.
Venture Beat have published an article where they talk to EA Senior Director of Corporate Communications, John Reseburg, about EA’s Online Pass program and he confirms that it is gone by saying, “Yes, we’re discontinuing Online Pass. None of our new EA titles will include that feature.”
As to why the Online Pass is being scrapped, Reseburg said “Initially launched as an effort to package a full menu of online content and services, many players didn’t respond to the format. We’ve listened to the feedback and decided to do away with it moving forward.”
Whether something else will replace the Online Pass system is yet to be seen, but perhaps EA know something we don’t about the next generation of consoles. We will have to wait and see.
EA isn’t the only company who used this Online Pass program, but for the moment EA is the only one who has said they aren’t going to use it any more. The other publishers and developers that currently use it are: Ubisoft, Activision, 505 Games, SOE and Warner Bros. Interactive.
We can only hope that in this case, EA are trend setters.