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EA Abandoning Online Pass Feature

Posted on May 16, 2013 AT 01:18am

Ding dong the witch is dead, which old witch? The controversial Online Pass witch! Well, at least for EA games anyway as the publisher has announced that it is abandoning the feature going forward.

EA’s senior director of corporate communications John Reseburg confirmed the discontinuation of the Online Pass feature to Venture Beat. “Yes, we’re discontinuing Online Pass,” he said. “None of our new EA titles will include that feature.”

According to Reseburg, EA launched the program ”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.”

Electronic Art’s VP of corporate communications, Jeff Brown offered Game Informer a more detailed explanation:

“There’s not much to say. The online pass came out in 2010. It was a way of packaging together a suite of post-launch content and services for people. There was also an element for people who bought the game second sale. It never really caught on. People didn’t like it. People told us that they didn’t like it and you know, we went through a cycle and we’re about to put out some new games and we just decided not to do that anymore. We’re 100 percent committed to creating on-going content and services so the consumers get more value out of the game – you know games like Battlefield and FIFA where there’s all sorts of new things that get added all the time – but the whole idea of packaging it up with an online pass, clearly it was not popular, so we listened to people and we stopped doing it.”

Of course this doesn’t mean the complete destruction of the Online Pass, sadly. Other publishers will still require you to input that little code before you can enjoy half the game. However, as far as EA games are concerned you will never have to use one again.

Are you happy to see EA move away from the Online Pass? Should all publishers do the same? Share your thoughts below.

Matthew Bennett, Associate Editor
Matthew Bennett finally got his big break with EGM three years ago, following years of volunteer work for various sites. An ability to go many hours without sleep and a quick wit make him ideal for his role as associate editor at He often thinks back to the days when the very idea of this career seemed like nothing but an impossible dream. Follow him on Twitter @mattyjb89. Meet the rest of the crew.

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