A few weeks ago we reported that EA games had backtracked on its Online Pass system and decided to eliminate Online Passes from its existing catalogue of games and future titles. This was seen a big win for gamers at the time, but little did we know that one of the primary reasons for this change was the incoming Xbox One and its DRM protected used games system.
However, EA has been true to its word in the removal of the Online Pass system and what’s more, the company has spoken to IGN and confirmed that it has started to make the Online Passes for a selection of games free online. In some cases the passes have been removed completely.
The following games that previously had an Online Pass will now be free to play online:
- Alice: Madness Returns
- Battlefield 3
- Battlefield: Bad Company 2
- Dead Space 2
- Dead Space 3
- Dragon Age 2
- Dragon Age: Origins
- Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
- Mass Effect 2
- Mass Effect 3
- Medal of Honor
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit
- Need For Speed: The Run
- Need For Speed: Shift 2
- Skate 3
- The Sims 3
That’s some big name titles there!
With the removal of the Online Pass EA has updated its help section information with details on the Online Pass system. EA states:
“When will specific games have their Online Pass turned off?”
“The latest releases of EA SPORTS games are the first. Over the next several weeks, Online Pass will either be removed completely, or will be available for free in the PlayStation Store and Xbox LIVE Marketplace.”
And the company gave a further reason for the removal of the Online Pass system, stating;
“We listened to the feedback from players, and decided to do away with Online Pass. We hope that eliminating Online Pass will allow more people to play and enjoy EA games for a long time to come.”
However, we suspect it’s less of the feedback from players and more of the change in how next-gen consoles deal with the use of second hand games that has swayed EA away from Online Passes.