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In a move that took far longer than it should have, Electronic Arts has decided to abandon its unpopular and controversial Online Pass program.
The Online Pass program was controversial because it was required for players to use the online features of multiple games, including the popular Battlefield and Madden series. Players who purchased the game new would enter a one-time use code that would allow them to join the online communities and play multiplayer on some of their favorite games. Obviously, this move tried to curb secondhand buying of games, which would have codes that no longer worked. To play online, secondhand game buyers would have to purchase their own codes through the game itself.
“Initially launched as an effort to package a full menu of online content and services, many players didn't respond to the format,” EA senior director of corporate communications John Reseburg confirmed to GamesBeat in an e-mail. “We’ve listened to the feedback and decided to do away with it moving forward.”
No future EA game will feature an Online Pass, Resesburg also stated. That being said, it will be interesting to see what EA has in store for the online future of their games. EA wasn't the only company to feature online passes. Activision and Ubisoft's games also use the system and there's not word on whether or not they'll discontinue it.