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Game Over for Printed Instructions

While we are still years away from the end days of physical media, there is one aspect of the disc-based game that may be on its last legs: the instruction manual.

Speaking with Kotaku, Rob Semsey, a representative from EA Sports, confirmed that they’d be taking a cue from Ubisoft and no longer including physical instruction manuals with their games. No word yet on if this is an EA Sports-only initiative, or if it will carry over to all EA titles.

With in-game tutorials going back to the days where we still identified machines by their “bit” number, it was only a matter of time that publishers would make this cost-cutting and environmentally friendly move.

Ubisoft announced last year that they would no longer include paper manuals with their games, starting with another sports title, Shaun White Skateboarding, which included a “digital manual” viewable in-game.

The final printed EA Sports manual came, somewhat appropriately, with last fall’s NBA Jam, and their first title without paper instructions was Fight Night Champion. While there is a tutorial in Fight Night, you’re able to view the manual in-game, however you can also view the instructions through a downloadable PDF accessible from EA’s website.


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