EA disables all Star Wars Battlefront 2 microtransaction crud – for now

Whenever you see a studio call fans “passionate,” it’s almost always shorthand for “rioting with pitchforks and torches.” Guess what Star Wars Battlefront 2’s execs are calling its players this week?

DICE GM Oskar Garbrielson apologized to the game’s “passionate” community about the missteps that EA made in locking its characters behind a prohibitive grind and aggressively pushing microtransactions. He said that the team is disabling all in-game purchases with crystals, at least until the company can figure out a better way to implement them:

“But as we approach the worldwide launch, it’s clear that many of you feel there are still challenges in the design. We’ve heard the concerns about potentially giving players unfair advantages. And we’ve heard that this is overshadowing an otherwise great game. This was never our intention. Sorry we didn’t get this right. We hear you loud and clear, so we’re turning off all in-game purchases. We will now spend more time listening, adjusting, balancing and tuning. This means that the option to purchase crystals in the game is now offline, and all progression will be earned through gameplay. The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date, only after we’ve made changes to the game. We’ll share more details as we work through this.”

This is the latest chapter in a saga that started when EA defended its decision to lock key characters behind an obscene grind by saying that it “provided players with a sense of pride and accomplishment.” Even after reducing the costs of heroes, EA still was taken to task by players for not fixing the situation or apologizing for the business model.

Unconfirmed rumors on Reddit by a supposed EA insider suggest that Disney has cracked down on EA ahead of the theatrical release of The Last Jedi.

Source: EA. Thanks, Sean and Sorenthaz!
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119 Comments on "EA disables all Star Wars Battlefront 2 microtransaction crud – for now"

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Fisty

I’d love to see Disney get fed up with EA and pull the license.

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Witches

I recognize their MO from SWTOR, incredibly anti fun mechanic announced like it was the most wonderful thing ever, as player incredulity becomes player rage, they back off and delay it while they study better methods of making us eat that crap sandwich, and eventually it is implemented with a minor decrease in awfulness, with a smug, “we heard your feedback”.

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Terren Bruce

While I 100% agree EA went way too far with this and I’m glad they’re being slapped over it, I actually do want some form of micro-transactions in the game. Because I want them to continue to support it for years to come without paid DLC as was their original idea.

They plan to support the game for YEARS as opposed to the single year of support that BF1 got and they want to do it for free. I’m totally on board for that idea.

They just need to do it through cosmetics, not star cards.

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McGuffn

Kotaku just published a story about a supposed EA employee that said he was getting death threats. Only problem is he’s probably a hoax and theres no information he ever worked at EA or received death threats over a company and product he wasn’t involved with. So it seems like a case of stolen valor. https://kotaku.com/the-curious-case-of-the-ea-game-dev-who-said-he-receive-1820474458

Keep that in mind when you read that reddit update about the “EA insider” blabbing his mouth on a reddit victory tour while providing no real information.

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Sorenthaz

Wow even IGN gave it a 6.5, specifically because of the ‘hostile’ progression system riddled with microtransaction hooks.

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Nathan Aldana

For now meaning :it’ll be back and double as exploitative as soon as the furor dies down and we can think of a way to get it white knighted”

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Ashfyn Ninegold

Undoubtedly. I’m remembering what Fernando Paiz (producer of DDO when it went F2P) told a seminar of game execs way back when Free to Play was revolutionary (2009).

To wit, you can safely ignore what players say, they will still spend in your cash shop no matter what.

It follows because just like you must watch what game developers do, not what they say; game developers are watching what players do and ignoring what they say.

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Paragon Lost

Itta be back, just in some more not so over top form.

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Sorenthaz

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Well it did have a little effect on stocks.

And that ‘insider’ may just be someone BSing and getting lucky, but he did claim that credit costs for lootboxes/credit gains will be lowered/increased respectively within another day or two. So guess that’ll prove whether the dude’s ripping people off or not for karma.

Meanwhile…

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/17/wall-street-is-freaking-out-as-ea-caves-again-to-social-media-outrage-over-its-star-wars-game.html

This is apparently the most popular article on CNBC right now. There are plenty of other articles and discussions elsewhere going on about the news, and a lot of them aren’t really setting a positive narrative. EA is of course trying to tell shareholders that “This change is not expected to have a material impact on EA’s fiscal year 2018 financial guidance” via a Security Filing they did. https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/712515/000071251517000095/form8kfiled20171117.htm

Overall though this has been one very interesting week and the pressure needs to keep being held on EA to make sure that crystals won’t be able to purchase any lootbox with Star Cards/Credits/Crafting Parts that would give extra advantages.

One problem though is that it makes the Deluxe Edition all the more worthwhile because you’re getting early weapons + specific Tier 4 Star Cards that can’t be obtained by whaling it up anymore. But that’s a lesser problem in the long run I guess.

Hopefully DICE will be able to start making some real changes that make the experience less of a slow, painful grind with aggressive/hostile P2W microtransactions.

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steve

You see? The giant can bleed. It may not be much, but it will leave a mark.

Keep on scratchin’, kiddos.

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George

Yeah, but it was a bigger giant to make this giant bleed… Still a success for us.

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Malcolm Swoboda

do it

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Paragon Lost

You needed to put mouse ears on him and change it to Papa Disney with the gun. ;)

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rafael12104

LOL. Indeed, I can see it.

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Malcolm Swoboda

Haha. They’re really hurting the SW brand.

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Darthbawl

Just read an article over at Forbes, it indeed does *seem* that Disney CEO Bob (Darth) Iger called EA CEO Andrew Wilson and I am sure Wilson got Force Choked pretty hard. :P

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Kherova

All you players out there: vote with your wallet. Just don’t buy the game and this problem will fix itself. Unfortunately I see people on Twitter saying they will still buy it because it is Star Wars.

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Armsbend

Many will see it as a “win” just as they did when Valve colluded with Bethesda – and then backed off to start making money on other people’s mods. It iosn’t of course. It is a hand slap by Disney and a retooling of the future response and likely a way to make lockboxes more hidden, more insidious, more intrusive if they can.

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Dug From The Earth

Yup… gamers cant sit back and relax yet. We still have a long time of fighting back if this sorta thing is going to ever fully go away.

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A Dad Supreme

Unfortunately I see people on Twitter saying they will still buy it because it is Star Wars.

I’m one of those. Not a Twitter poster but a Star Wars fan. :P

I ordered the game for $48 (on sale) and plan to play when it comes from Amazon in two days. I won’t be buying any lootboxes though as I don’t for any game I play regardless of “fairness” of the company. I simply don’t agree with cash shops on any basis.

In my opinion a “vote” can be just as effective by purchasing the game at the lowest price point, playing and never buying any shop items… not even that “cosmetic hat” that’s so innocent.

A company notes that a person buys a game but also can tell they aren’t buying any shop items which makes them ask the question “What’s wrong with our cash shop that this guy/gal/people aren’t buying anything?”

Then they either lower the prices on what’s not moving (always done) or they stop selling certain items altogether (EVE monocle, Defiance $100 lootbox weapons, etc) because they are priced too ridiculously or are unfair.

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draugris

Nope, your vote means. I like your game and i don´t care for the cash shop, so basically it isn´t a vote at all. By buying this product you support EA´s policy on microtransactions. I can understand that die hard Star Wars Fan´s might have a hard time not buying the title but you should not excuse it with a “i voted against lootboxes” statement because you didn´t.

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kgptzac

Actually it’s not meaningless to buy the game and not spending in cash shop. EA will know how many such players are in this category and will surely meaningful in the formulation of the monetization policies of their next game.

Somebody needs to do a reality check for discrediting people who don’t buy cash shop stuff not voting against it with their wallet.

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Schmidt.Capela

Actually, the message you send by still purchasing the game and not buying anything from the cash store is, “if we add exploitive monetization the players that dislike it will still purchase the game, so there is no reason to avoid adding it.”

Which is why I draw my own line a bit differently. For a single-player game I simply won’t purchase a game whose monetization I disagree with. For multi-player games I will still purchase a game that has monetization I don’t agree with, but only as long as there is nothing behind that monetization scheme that I truly want; if there is anything inside lockboxes or similar that would truly tempt me into purchasing those, I will instead avoid the game as a whole.

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draugris

Unfortunately it is. If you want to make a stand don´t buy the product, it is simple as that. The actions EA took where only made possible because they (and Disney) fear a) a loss for the image of the Star Wars brand and b) a financial loss. So buying a product but not buying loot boxes is i am sorry a half assed decision. And right now it is not clear what happens in the future. For now loot boxes are off but they will come back, only in what form is the question.

Let´s assume worst case, they return in a pay to win form. People who bought the game and not invested in loot boxes, well enjoy getting recked by credit card heroes in multiplayer. Do you want to tell me that those players are not tempted to spend a dollar here or there to also get the blaster of ultimate doom ? I dare you….

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Apollymi

“… all progression will be earned through gameplay”

A truly revolutionary idea indeed.

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Coolit

I’m sure the fact the game has already bombed on Metacritic setting a new record in the process for lowest user score ever has had an effect on their decision to TEMPORARILY disable microtransactions too.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/playstation-4/star-wars-battlefront-ii
http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/star-wars-battlefront-ii
http://www.metacritic.com/game/xbox-one/star-wars-battlefront-ii

By all accounts the game itself is meant to be pretty fun but it’s the toxic P2W progression system that’s killed it before it’s even out of the gate and rightly so.

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Sorenthaz

Even the critic scores are probably not overall what EA was hoping for. They were probably wanting smooth 8’s/9’s (or 80’s/90’s) from reviewers, but have been getting lower scores due to the microtransactions weighing heavily on many reviewers.

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Arktouros

I guess no one is getting any bonuses this year LOL

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Ashfyn Ninegold

Holy shit.

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Sray

Keep in mind, that they’re only just disabling the microtransactions: they’re in no way altering the soul crushing grind that was meant to push players towards paying real money for those power progressing star cards. Nothing has been changed: they’ve just flipped a switch for now so that they can flip it again in two or three months when the world is looking at something else.

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Armsbend

*ahem*
My guess is that their DLC plans will be altered a touch and then escalated to very soon after Christmas release. They will be altered to include more evil.

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McGuffn

DLC will get the Andromeda treatment.

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Arktouros

Have people forgotten this is the IP that spawned the line “I am altering the deal, pray I don’t alter it any further”?

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Sray

I don’t think they had plans for DLC per se. EA committed to making all the maps for free in order to keep from fragmenting the player base, which was something that really first game; they might back peddle on that decision now, but that would only hurt the game’s population further. The single player campaign is incredibly short, with most critics saying that it can be completed in about five to six hours and it’s at best an okay story, so it doesn’t seem like they’re planning on much of a future for the single player portion. It looks like they’d planned on the same model of EA Sports games: the game and all the buy-ables are released at the start, and then players can spend the rest of the year earning the stuff, or opening their wallets; lather, rinse and repeat next year.

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Darthbawl

I just noticed someone here named “Sterling” posting. Is this the one and only Lord Jim Sterling himself? If it is, I might fanboy a little. :P If so, thanks for posting in here! *bows*

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Brother Maynard

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Paragon Lost

Hehe. Exactly this.

what-4
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what-4

Probably some truth to this.

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Armsbend

I saw the article on NPR this morning. This is only the second time I’ve seen a specific video game make the national news since the GTA makes kids kill days. The other being Pokemon GO.

The foot is on EA’s throat. Keeping pressing down until they are no longer breathing. Then two to the chest one in the head to make sure EA is dead.

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Iain B

Let’s not get too carried away with the “yay Disney” stuff. They aren’t our new benevolent overlord that is doing this in the name of protecting their customers.

Disney’s (arguably) most popular and revenue-creating IP is about to be dragged through the courts in Belgium on accusations of enabling child gambling…

what-4
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what-4

Their need to protect their IP from bad publicity, directly benefits us as gamers.

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Iain B

In this case, yes it is benefiting us for now.

My point is that our fellow gamers shouldn’t necessarily be taking this as the win that it appears to be. This didn’t happen because EA decided that doing the right thing was more important than their bottom line.

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Sorenthaz

It’s winning a battle but not the war. There are plenty of threads on the Subreddit about how people shouldn’t get complacent/celebrate just yet, lol.

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Armsbend

And what isn’t good about that?

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Iain B

Because they aren’t doing it for us. This won’t stop EA from doing the exact same thing in their next game with an IP they have more control over. You know, like Anthem?

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A Dad Supreme

You know, like Anthem?

But I know no one that has an attachment to “Anthem”. Do you?

If it’s not a great game and it’s loaded with this kind of micro-nonsense, I don’t see sales going well simply because there is no “wow” factor.

If they want to put that into an IP that no one knows, that’s literally “their business”

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Iain B

So you’re ok with gamers being screwed if it’s a new IP. That’s crap.

As gamers, we shouldn’t want this sort of pay-2-win garbage in ANY games.

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Armsbend

I’m referring to them being sued by national governments.I hope they rip them through the entire continent.

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thirtymil

I like Disney.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

That Mouse has big feet, never forget that.

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Sray

It’s a start, but as far as I’m concerned EA still needs the bloody nose of an under performing game, otherwise they’re just going to find a way to try this shit again with the next game. And keep in mind this is only being done here because the world is watching: SWTOR’s endgame is still a heavily monetized, RNG based nightmare (where is Disney on that?); and EA Sport games are still loaded up with balance altering microtransactions out the door. Once the harsh spotlight goes away, the microtransactions will be back in a slightly altered but still just as egregious form; and launch day players will care less because they’ll have had time to earn a few star cards, so they won’t be concerned with guys who have a power advantage on day one because of buying a few card packs.

This is a battle that’s been won, not a war. I still wouldn’t buy this game, and I’ll still tell my less informed friends to avoid it.

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Arktouros

I’ll give credit where credit is due and give players this battle in the ever ongoing war against lockboxes.

However I remain unconvinced the war is even remotely won. This took a monumental effort on gamer’s parts to see changes to the point it spilled out everywhere across all forms of media. A game like Guild Wars 2 and it’s ever increasing rise in using predatory methods isn’t going to see the same level of effort. Not every game is going to have a Disney with an upcoming movie coming up to reign things in.

Future games also have the ability to learn from failures like this as well. Since AAA gaming seems to be following in the MMO game footsteps what we’ll likely start seeing in the future is them setting up the infrastructure for cash shops only minus the cash shop up front. So they’ll have random loot crates you earn in game right off the bat through in game methods, then 30 days into the game launch just slide those paid versions in after all the game reviews are in.

Again, change isn’t always good. EA isn’t sit looking down, hat in hand, and reflect on how they did the community wrong and how they can do better next time. They’re going to sit there and focus group the shit out of your outrage and come up with an even better model.

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Terren Bruce

What Guild Wars 2 has is what BF2’s community is fighting to get, free DLC supported through cosmetic loot boxes. It’s not the same thing at all. There is going to be micro-transactions in BF2 because they made the DLC free. The only question is which form should that take? EA got too greedy. That is why there is such outrage. You won’t find the same outrage in the GW2 community because the situation is totally different.

Mount skins are not P2W. It just isn’t. And no matter how much people scream “Fashion Wars 2” that still doesn’t make it so.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

The interesting thing about this is how it brought this predatory game design to the attention of just about every gamer, whether they cared about the game or not. If you read social media, follow on any gaming website or forum at all, you heard about this. Talk about heightened awareness. I’d like to think that means less of this will be tolerated, but that’s a giant step for assumptions I’m not quite willing to make.

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Arktouros

The thing is I don’t think it’s ever been a problem of awareness. I think you primarily run into two scenarios.

The first you got the classic “whale” scenario where you have some Son of the Oil Tycoon who drops $15k on a game and just doesn’t give a single fuck. They don’t care about what they’re doing or it’s impact on the game industry or business. They will never care about any of those things. They wanted amusement and got it regardless of what was an inconsequential cost to them.

The second you have adults with expendable income and have no qualms about expending it on their hobby. I have co-workers who drop $1000’s on things like snow-mobiles and hunting equipment and otherwise each year. However that also means people going to spend like that on games, and even though they know what that means for the game industry and design and they’re aware of what they’re doing it again comes back to a don’t really care, got my golden sparkly Pony.

So awareness hasn’t ever really been an issue in this ongoing battle.

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shear

Oh, it’s definitely not won, but the word loot box is forever tainted now. Every new game coming out of EA and any other studio will be under elevated scrutiny if there are loot boxes with anything but cosmetics in them. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the question “Are there loot boxes in your game?” becomes a standard after this, and there is only one correct answer to that question.

At the very least, I hope publishers would think twice after this. EA sort of shit the bed for everybody. :D

This is a start.

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Arktouros

I mean loot boxes have always been tainted. I honestly can’t think of anyone who has ever gone, “Oh yay, loot boxes!” Everyone has been well aware of the sewage of Applications that gluts the mobile market forever and nothing has changed there.

What’s going to happen is smart businesses will learn from this. First lesson right out of the gate is don’t ever respond to somewhere you don’t have control over. Them posting on Reddit in the first place was a huge mistake. Second lesson is that avoid letting players see the full scheme of your game before it’s launched. Don’t let them be able to calculate it takes 4000+ hours of grinding to unlock things before you got their money. Third lesson is possibly adapt some sort of delayed monetization model that you can claim there’s demand for after the fact like have crates you earn in game, then later sell directly for money after 14-30 days of game launch.

It started a long time ago actually, and we resoundingly lost many of the battles that led to the point we’re at today.

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shear

Oh, you’re absolutely right they were never an exciting bit of gameplay that everybody begged for. But now any game that has loot boxes from this point on will be immediately compared to battlefront fiasco.

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Arktouros

As opposed to every other fiasco with lockboxes that came before it? Has there ever been a game with lockboxes that there wasn’t some level of outrage over?

Also don’t forget the Third lesson to be learned there. If they add the loot boxes for sale after release they avoid the topic entirely and by then they already have your money.

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shear

Of course not but it was never this bad.

And yeah I already thought about that too.

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Arktouros

Very few games get this big though. It’s really a perfect storm. You’re not going to see this kind of level of outrage over a game like Anthem or something. As I originally mentioned as bad as GW2 did with their mount skins it never spilled out into normal media anywhere as bad as it got in their own communities. Again, with past models we’ve certain seen outrage but this is the level of outrage it takes to see change and many speculate it took Disney’s involvement to see change at all. Just really hard to make the case that things will be different in the future as a result of this.

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shear

One can hope that this is a turning point. Nobody would have cared if it was all cosmetic. I would be playing it right now.

Fingers crossed, I am running out of publishers I like. :D

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Space Captain Zor

I bet their decision to turn them back on coincides with a date roughly about 1 month after the release of The Last Jedi…

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rafael12104

As I mentioned in the other article on this yesterday: HELLO DISNEY!

Turning off ALL in game purchases. No more sales of crystals for cash. Progression removed from lock boxes. I read the post twice to make sure.

This was Disney all the way. Why do I say that? Because NBA2K18 and Shadow of War, to name just two other games that pulled the same shit didn’t even blink at the player negative response.

Disney has been standing there on the sideline like a parent who is disappointed and angry with their kids soccer coach and the game is over. According to Reddit Disney threatened to pull their license because as I mentioned before, Disney cares about its brand unlike EA.

You try the same shenanigans with a Disney IP, and suddenly players interests are a concern, EA? LOL.

Seriously, no matter how temporary. I’m calling this a WIN!

Still not going to buy BFII, but I’m going to gloat a little and be a real pain in the ass to friends and family as I demand they do my bidding.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

You are right in thinking Disney is worried. There’s this:

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/17/wall-street-is-freaking-out-as-ea-caves-again-to-social-media-outrage-over-its-star-wars-game.html

As of this posting EA stock is down 2.98% . And articles like this don’t help, either:

http://fortune.com/2017/11/15/star-wars-battlefront-gambling-disney-electronic-arts-loot-box-crate/

As soon as Disney looks like it is not safeguarding children’s fun and happiness, that becomes a brand and marketplace crisis. And that impacts everything Disney does, not just Battlefront II.

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Line

Disney cares about bad press before Christmas for their new movie with billions in toys on the line.

As for “doing it well”… maybe they can do it like Walt, accuse all those bad people that made them lose money of being communists?
Seems like a good way to frame the debate, if you’re against lockboxes you’re an evil [Donald Trump certified slur].

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rafael12104

Lol. Interesting point of view.

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BalsBigBrother

In the case of Shadows of War the lockboxes felt totally redundant to me and at no point during the 47 hours I played that game to date did I feel the need to buy one or even look in the shop. Sure they were there and in the abstract I can understand why folks might be upset with the all lockboxes are evil narrative that has been pushed recently.

This is why I don’t like generalisations as they can push folks away from something that they may otherwise enjoy. You can enjoy everything in SoW without ever opening the in game store quite easily and a lot of folks may have missed out on a lot of fun due to their preconceived ideas of games with lockboxes.

You all keep fighting the good fight though blah blah /sigh

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rafael12104

Fair enough.

I was affected a bit more in Shadow because I truly wanted some of the lock box items and I felt cheated because they weren’t part of the game I bought in the first place. So, from my perspective it is very similar to BFII in that I paid for the game and yet I still didn’t have all of it.

NBA2K, is a different story. The paywall there locked key game features.

And yet, I think those two games in particular, were the slippery slope that led to BFIIs disaster.

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BalsBigBrother

Out of interest what did you want out of the SoW lockbox that you couldn’t get via in game play?

My understanding was that every thing in the real money lockboxes was available through game play one way or another. The only “advantage” if you could call it that in a single player non competitive game is a time saving one.

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rafael12104

Well, there were a few Legendary Orcs I couldn’t find in game. Supposedly they were there, but I never saw them.

But to be honest, I didn’t look hard and paid no heed to it later.

Gold did not give you a competitive advantage in Shadow, but it certainly made it convenient.

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BalsBigBrother

Fair enough I guess.

For myself I think I got to tier 6 or so in The Shadow Wars end game thing before I got distracted by other games (though I will finish that up at some point.) I had enough Legendary Orcs plus enough high level normal /epics in each area that it was better for me to kill for gear drops rather than recruit or shame.

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Schmidt.Capela

For me, at least, when it comes to offline games, things locked behind lockboxes or similar create a constant feeling of frustration in knowing I can’t get everything in the game without paying extra, even if what I’m not able to get isn’t important. That constant feeling of frustration makes the game not really worth playing for me, even if it’s otherwise a very good game.

It’s why I go for an “all or nothing” approach to DLC when it comes to games I mainly intend to play single-player: I either purchase the game together with all DLC, or I don’t purchase the game at all. And when I purchase it with all DLC (including future DLC), as a rule of thumb I will pay at most $60 if that full package is offered within roughly a month of the game being released, at most $30 if I have to wait between a month and a year, and at most $15 if the game is over a year old.

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Michael18

I have zero trust in EA higher-ups suddenly seeing the light and changing their minds about video game monetization.

But if it is true that Disney is behind this and they realized that outrageous business models can actually harm their precious Star Wars IP well beyond gaming, this might(!) actually have some lasting impact on the game and gaming industry.

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Sterling

Disney mobile games have worse lockbox mechanics than anything BF2 had. It’s not the model that’s the issue here (if at all given the lack of substantiation of the Mouse intervention claims), it’s the volcanic public blowback.

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Armsbend

The question is: do they really look at their mobile division often? No way to be sure – but perhaps The Great Eye of Disney will slowly turn to it’s unremarkable division to see if everything aligns to their image.

*shrug* we’ll see I hope so.

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bladeddingo

it’s kind of expected that mobile games have these terrible lockbox mechanics, those games are actually f2p, meaning no upfront purchase is required. it’s predatory, but it’s become commonplace and acceptable for that platform. I’m speaking now about anecdotal evidence, but I hazard that a lot of people who play a mobile game play long enough to get to a paywall and quit, I know I do because I refuse to pay a ton of money for shitty mobile games.

BFII is a AAA title that cost $89.00 CAD, if I’m dropping that much money on a game, I don’t want to be blocked out of it by a paywall after a few hours of play.

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Sterling

I don’t disagree with any of what you posted @bladeddingo. The only point I was trying to make is that the assertion that Disney has some kind of moral high ground in this equation when it comes to business models is not supported by available data from their other games.

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styopa

You know, when we see how companies like Funcom and Trion so catastrophically fail at consumer/public relations, I guess what surprises me the most is the EA has managed to really effortlessly exceed them?

I mean, congrats, sort of.

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Scratches

And here I though EA was actually starting to do better, what with things like implementing refunds in the Origin client lightyears before Volvo…

Oh well, lol

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Schmidt.Capela

Adding refunds, IMHO, was due to seeing the writing on the wall. Valve was going to lose that legal fight, and other stores were already paying lip service to the idea of refunds to avoid becoming the next target.

Also, EA is so far behind Valve when it comes to their online store, they need every advantage they can get. I visit the Steam store daily, and know a bunch of people that do the same; but apart from bloggers that earn their living talking about EA games, I don’t know anyone that does the same to Origin (not that it would be needed, the only games that it has and aren’t also on Steam are the EA ones, and of those there is perhaps something new about once a month, whereas there is always something new happening at Steam).

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rafael12104

It’s an accomplishment. A sense of pride, if you will.

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peor togs

Disney better get their IP under control. Gambling boxes in a kids rated game is horrible.

Metacritic user rating at 0.8
667k Reddit downvotes

Do not buy this game, people.

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John Mclain

I loved battlefront 1 and 2 on the PS2 back in the day, but I’ll be skipping this one on principal alone.

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Utakata

“This means that the option to purchase crystals in the game is now offline, and all progression will be earned through gameplay.”

Should of been that way from the start. As I am pretty sure they wouldn’t be needing to issuing this statement to begin with.

“The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date, only after we’ve made changes to the game. We’ll share more details as we work through this.”

It’s called selling inconsequential fluff. Not sure there can be “sparkle pony” version of a TIE fighter. But I’ll let their imaginations work that one out. :)

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Scratches

Not sure there can be “sparkle pony” version of a TIE fighter. But I’ll let their imaginations work that one out. :)

I mean, they could always just ask someone how they forced Bioware to monetize TIE Fighters for SWTOR…..

Remember that space combat / dogfighting expansion…?

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thalendor

“sparkle pony” version of a TIE fighter

But no pink pigtails costumes for the storm troopers? :-P

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Utakata

…even better, why not a pink TIE fighter!? <3

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Schmidt.Capela

Well, there is already an officially licensed yellow and orange TIE Fighter, so why not a pink one?

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thirtymil

You know, I never knew I wanted a sparkle-TIE until you mentioned it.

And now it’s all I want.

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Utakata

Lol! :)

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BalsBigBrother

I wonder if the mouse has really noticed as per the Reddit thing either way this is a total self induced fustercluck on EA’s part. While I would normally hope lessons will be learned hope does have its limits and that one would be well beyond even mine.

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thalendor

It’s just an obvious setup for a bait and switch. The supposed “listening, adjusting, balancing and tuning” will probably result in nothing more than minor adjustments, at best. Anyone who is now considering purchasing this game due to any changes in the lockboxes is best advised to wait for those changes to be implemented before making a decision.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

Nice try EA.

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rafael12104

Lol. You think this just to get players buying the game at launch? You could be right… no telling what evil has been spoken in the EA board room.

But I’m telling you, Disney is the entity they can’t ignore.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

I do. I think they’re trying to salvage day one sales and that they’ll flip the switch turning back on all of these tactics as soon as they’re no longer concerned about box sales.

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Arktouros

After The Last Jedi launches…

“After an internal review of our in game systems and cash shop mechanics we have reintroduced everything with slight changes so we can claim it’s different but fundamentally everything is the same.”

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rafael12104

*shakes head*

Yeah, I can see it… but, I’ll take the little reprieve at least. At a minimum it is a warning shot across the bow for other gaming companies.

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Arktouros

It’s extremely unlikely this will have any deep or lasting impact on other companies. It’s kinda a perfect storm of a beloved IP with an upcoming movie owned by another giant corporation who can make actual impacts. I’m like 90% sure even if they had gone through as is they still would have made hundreds of millions on Battlefront 2 regardless.

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shear

You know the sheer fact that they are so hell-bent on not taking out the pay to win aspect out of the boxes, makes it so abundantly clear that they know exactly what they are doing.

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rafael12104

Very good point. The veil of “just providing what players want” is lifted.

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Darthbawl

Even though this is temporary…

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Hirku

The community should drive the point home further by still refusing to buy, but I guess one miracle per holiday season is enough and EA giving in like that more than qualifies.

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rafael12104

I’m not buying, and I beta tested and love the game play. I’m not sure I will ever buy it now.

If it goes free to play, maybe. LOL.

Skoryy
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Skoryy

“You threw a tantrum, now nobody gets anything.” That’s some brilliant parenting there given how much effort it takes to unlock all the heroes. Now to wait and see if/when the whales start a counter-revolt.

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Sterling

Conflating consumer outrage at a completely predatory business model with whining children is beyond inaccurate.

Skoryy
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Skoryy

Just telling it how EA might see it.

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FG3000

I dont think the business model itself is the problem, just the numbers need to be tweaked.

I dont see an issue with giving people an OPTION to speed up progress (see boosts in literally every game). Some people are money rich and time poor.

The issue becomes when the game makes the game overly grindy to push more sales. BUT I do think the two can live along side each other.

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Matthew Ward

You might not see an issue with it, but many (myself included) do..
Increasing grind to hellish levels to encourage further spend is a bastard move. And having P2W aspects in the cash shop is damaging to the player that doesn’t have a deep pocket.

MT’s should be cosmetic only. Anything else is a predatory business practice, and deserving of being hauled over the coals like SWBF2

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Sterling

I understand where you’re coming from (especially on the time poor front) but I have to disagree. The end result of a system wherein one can buy progress is inevitably a system design that incentivizes buying progress, as opposed to a system that allows for meaningful progress simply by playing.

IE: If publishers can get money out of the progression system, they’re going to structure the progression system to maximize the amount of money they can siphon from their players. It’s part of why lockbox type systems are so insidiously harmful to a game, they impact quite literally everything.

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FG3000

So this game is the line in the sand? Games for years have been selling boost, literally every popular MMO out has some type of paid boost feature.

And “hell” grinds have been in games BEFORE microtransactions. See WoW booty bay rep grind. So I think its going to be very difficult to know if a grind is long because the devs wanted it that way or the grind is long to push loot sales.

Back to Star Wars, I think the players are right, the prices were absurd. What I dont agree is this. If a player buys Star Wars right now he is ALREADY behind, people who are time rich already have much better cards than a new player. Every day that goes by that you dont play time rich players are gaining power and if youre time poor you may never catch up while the game is in its prime. Thats NOT a level playing field. If someone wants to drop $50 bucks to “boost” their account to get power to level the playing field for them, I say let them.

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Sterling

So this game is the line in the sand? Games for years have been selling boost, literally every popular MMO out has some type of paid boost feature.

I’ve been ranting against lockboxes for the better part of a decade. They’re a shite business model based solely on exploiting players to the detriment of whatever they’re implemented in. My line in the sand was a long, long time ago. Just because BF2 is terrible doesn’t remotely mean other games aren’t terrible in that regard.

And “hell” grinds have been in games BEFORE microtransactions. See WoW booty bay rep grind. So I think its going to be very difficult to know if a grind is long because the devs wanted it that way or the grind is long to push loot sales.

Previously existing poor design is no excuse for a predatory business model.

Back to Star Wars, I think the players are right, the prices were absurd. What I dont agree is this. If a player buys Star Wars right now he is ALREADY behind, people who are time rich already have much better cards than a new player. Every day that goes by that you dont play time rich players are gaining power and if youre time poor you may never catch up while the game is in its prime. Thats NOT a level playing field. If someone wants to drop $50 bucks to “boost” their account to get power to level the playing field for them, I say let them.

What you want is a game without persistence or progression then. Which is a perfectly valid position to take on competitive multiplayer.

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FG3000

What you want is a game without persistence or progression then. Which is a perfectly valid position to take on competitive multiplayer.

Good discussion actually! Maybe why I’m playing Battlerite pretty hardcore at the moment :)

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Sterling

If it works for you, and is a fun game system, go all in I say!

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Anthony Clark

It’s only temporary!

Once everyone has bought it, they’ll bring it back so as to screw everyone over at the same time.

Screw EA. Those Evil Asses are a horrible company.

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Ryuen

Yup, I’m guessing it will be around a month or month and a half or so.
By then the whole controversy will be nearly forgotten anyway and a new cry of outrage won’t find as much traction as by then it’s become ‘old news’.

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Harry Koala

Absolutely. They’ve just turned it off, seemingly in the hope that people will think they’ve won and fork out the box price, and then turn it back on for a good old whale milking session.

It’s not gone. It is coming back, most likely with trivial changes to try and dress it up a bit nicer.

wpDiscuz