Joining Hacked BF3 Servers = Banhammer?

By Alec Meer on October 3rd, 2011 at 8:48 am.

If you see more than 31 other men, you're in trouble

Oh dear. Cunning gentlethings found a way to hack/mod the Battlefield 3 open beta’s map – Operation Metro – to enable support for up to 128 shooting men. Officially, it only allows up to 32 shooting men, though the full release version may well raise the headcount. That’s not what I’m actually oh dearing about, though. It’s DICE/EA’s response to this that is troubling. In an official statement on the forum – which now appears to have been pulled, but we have a screenshot of it as-was below – they claimed that playing on the hacked servers “can cause your account to become compromised, stats to be altered or other issues to arise which may lead to having your account to be banned by EA.” In addition, horrifyingly, “if your account does get banned it means any other EA game you have on your account would also be unavailable.”

(Thanks, Optimaximal).

So, let’s get this straight. If you play on a modded Battlefield 3 server – which simply appear in the official Battlelog, rather than requiring you to actively explore the dark corners of the web – you could be banned from playing the game further and end up with a bunch of games you paid for in the past taken away from you. It’s only a threat, not a promise, but even the threat seems a disproportionate response.

And let’s also reiterate the nature of that mod – increasing the number of players in the game. It’s not like they’re replacing character models with ambulatory penises, screaming monstrous prejudice at people, cheating or swindling. They’re just raising the playercount because they want to explore the possibilities of the game. Certainly, it’s not what the beta’s for, but it’s not exactly corrupting BF3.

As well as the broader issues of customer service and penalising people who buy your games inherent here, it’s also an uncomfortable gut-punch as to just how much the current mania for unlocks and ranks in online games is choking PC gaming as we know it. The precious, precious stats must be protected at all costs – no matter if modding and experimentation and ultimately loyal, paying fans are sacrificed in the process. BF3 isn’t alone in this, not by a long shot, but it’s a miserable trend.

I entirely understand that EA and DICE want to protect their beta, use it to test and promote the game in the way they want to test and promote it, but the emphasis should be on getting the servers and the loopholes that led to them closed down, not punishing the curious.

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213 Comments »

  1. Njordsk says:

    Hmm, they failed hard and then want to ban people for using servers that DO show up the official battlelog?

    Yeah right.

    • d34thly says:

      “Honestly I fricken hate that browser based server browser. I would have much rather they integrated the server browser into the game itself, rather than telling the game to launch… and instead it launches your internet browser (only after you have had to install an add-on to your browser to make it work as a server browser, and even then that’s also only after you have had to install origin…), and then you go to tell it to join a game, and only then does it finally launch the actual game, and even then most of the time when it launches the game it doesn’t even launch it in full screen mode and in fact, for me, it pops up underneath my internet browser so i still have to click on the icon on my task bar to bring it to the foreground. To me this just seems like a messy and VERY unpolished way of doing things. If they had implemented the server browser and game stats the same way they did in BF2 i would have been much happier. The other thing i have noticed is that the internet browser based server browser seems to run ten times slower than any other server browser i have seen that was implemented into the game itself. It takes forever to get pings from each server, and is slow as heck to update… and i am hardly on a slow internet line…

      That combined with the other glaring issues in the beta, such as not being able to remap your keyboard and mouse keys, and the fact that you cannot tinker with game settings unless you are already spawned on the map and a sitting duck waiting to die… i am very unimpressed with what i have seen so far. The core game play looks to have amazing potential… but honestly they need to drop the browser based server browser and move that back into the game itself and allow you to launch the game without the aid of the internet browser and allow you to fiddle with key mapping and graphics / sound options when you are not already in a map (IE just like how they had it in BF2). Honestly the way they have implemented this crap seems very counter intuitive to me and feels like several steps backwards to me. BF2 had its problems with clutsy menus… but honestly to me they seemed absolutely polished compared to this garbage i am seeing. At least i could launch the game and change my key mappings and graphics/sound options before i actually launched into a map… and i could also quit playing on a server if i was sick of a map or didn’t like what came up next and go back to the server browser without it closing the whole game down and going back to my internet browser. At the very minimum they should allow people to choose if they want to use the internet browser based battlelog, or stick with something more conventional to FPS’s with the game stats and server browser built into the game menu system itself.

      Here’s hoping that when the actual game gets released I can choose to just open the game and find in the game menu to play on, and can tinker around with settings before I am already in a game… and not needing origin would be nice as well… i already pre-order my game on a disc mainly because i did not want to have to use origin to launch the dang thing… but now it’s looking like it wont matter and i am going to be stuck with being forced to use origin either way… does anyone miss the days when you could buy a game and didn’t need to install a bunch of other stupid little applications in addition to the game to play it, when you could just install the game and launch it by itself? I know i do…” moose17145

      I gave the open beta Battlefield3 a good go all night last night and found it very very boring. I went back to Black Ops where I don’t have to spend 90% of every match on my belly to achieve a positive KDR. They should rename this game BellyCrawl3. BellyCrawl3 is very realistic to a fault in that, no matter how good or bad you are, you all just feel like general generic government issue expendable bulletsponge cookie cutter infantry soldiers except without as much action and with nobody in particular ever standing out or being exceptional in any way. The upgrades/customization loadouts are a joke, it’s more like every class has a few options within a few options. There are more game modes now, almost as many game modes as FPS games started to have circa 1998.The graphics were the best i’ve seen in multiplayer but even with my $4300.00 triple-SLI GTX580 Core I7 980X rig it felt like it was playing at 28-32 frames (I did update all my drivers just previous to playing last night). I was going to buy this game, but after playing the boring beta, they lost my vote. All in all: the most graphically beautiful FPS ever with the lowest fun factor in 10 years. Hey, Combat Arms is free and it’s allot more fun than BattleCrawl3 will ever be.

      CAMPER N00BS OF THE WORLD REJOICE! YOUR GAME IS FINALLY HERE!!! Now you can all get the hell off of MY game servers and go have a circle jerk together.

    • JustOneWay says:

      tldr
      Did you say anything on topic and worth reading before descending into allcaps rudeness?

    • d34thly says:

      My whole extended family all still have an extensive collection of AOL drink mats.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      I think d34thly may be going for the record for the biggest number of reply fails not induced by web errors in the comments for a single article!

      :D

    • Tams80 says:

      Regretting spending more than you needed on your PC are we?

    • Magnetude says:

      “My whole extended family all still have an extensive collection of AOL drink mats.”

      The best non-sequitur.

    • d34thly says:

      @Sheng-ji, Magnetude and Tams80

      Thanks for the 3 forum awards: Forum reply fail king, Grammar fail king, overspending on my PC king.

      I would just like to give thanks to my parents, to the dictator of my chosen organized religion, and to my wife who stuck with me through it all. :)

    • d34thly says:

      @JustOneWay

      If that comment was to me, i am sorry for offending you. I admit it was a little rash and rude, but I can’t for the life of me think of a nice way to ask battlefield style players to quit infecting real games.

      @CryingTheAnnualKingo

      apparently you are not aware that half the modes in any COD game are full of objectives. I was using KDR as an example as it IS one of the methods used for metastats and ranking a persons performance in any (including BF3) fps. Furthermore, in BF3 you don’t really complete objectives as much as respawning near your teammate who already did the hard push to the objective. That to me would be like in baseball letting you start out on the base you were outed on instead of hitting again like they do with the fat retarded kids. So , i guess some of the Battlefield players are like fat retarded kids. BTW i know i won’t be missed, most battlefield players hate competition or skill so they will rejoice that they finally have a new game to play that competitive FPS junkies won’t touch with your grandma’s dick. Have fun circle-jerking with your boyfriends. Is that a real picture of you? Haha you actually look like you eat nutjuice in real life Lol.

      kinda off topic, but every Battlefield player I have ever met in person (about 23) I have told straight-up that it’s a game for pussies and they all just stare at the ground, shuffle their feet and agree with me. I have only had one person tell me that Black Ops is a pussy game (outside club Aqua in Minneapolis, you know who you are pussy) and I smacked him right in the teeth then kicked him twice for good measure before i spit on him and walked away. My point being that most FPS junkies are passionate yet all the battlefield players I’ve met are unics or shells that go through life half-assing it.

      Sorry for the tangent, but every time I hear from somebody who doesn’t care about their performance it makes me want to perform a Dr.Martin dental plan on their face. Stay the hell off my servers if you have no issue with sucking the rest of your life. I’ll gladly team play with unskilled players whom want to get better because that shows ambition and drive. Please have some pride and dignity, if you’re going to spend time doing something then aim to do it well (excluding all grammar jokes that will surely follow :)

    • CryingTheAnnualKingo says:

      @d34thly
      If all you care about in a game is “maintaining KDR”, then, by all means, stay with BlackOPs, which is catered to your type. Battlefield is meant for players who are actually interested in completing objectives. Your presence will not be missed.

    • rayne117 says:

      Man fuck Battlefield 3 fans. So snobby like this guy right above me.

      I played the beta my friend. It was anything BUT people working together to complete objectives.

      Every word uttered by one is either “We have so much more teamplay” or “We’re better than Cod”. And you’re supposed to be the adults to the “Cod kiddies”.

      Wrong and snobby.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      @D34thly – I hope you don’t think my “Award” was anything but a bit good natured ribbing!

    • CryingTheAnnualKingo says:

      @rayne117
      LOL! Ok, snobby, a little, but not wrong. I’ve played them all since 1942, and there is far more teamplay going on in this series, by and large. In the beta? Not really, which was the point of my post. The less KDR obsessed pussies, the better.
      And it’s not about kids vs. adults. It’s about two different styles of play. Is one superior to the other? In my opinion, yes, but that’s just my opinion.

    • CryingTheAnnualKingo says:

      @d34thly
      Well, my simple-minded friend, your response has provided me lolz-a-plenty. The only thing worth responding to is that, no, its not a picture of me. Its a shot taken in the 1950′s of an influential philosopher. I don’t think he was gay, but that doesn’t have to do with anything.

      As much as you shit on BF3, you will buy it eventually. As soon as the large scale maps are revealed, and your moronic, man-baby tantrums subside, you will find it irresistible.

      I bet you were among the hypocrites who whined endlessly about the lack of dedicated servers in Modern Warfare 3, joined the boycott, only to be found playing soon after. Children experience rage in short bursts, then it is quickly forgotten.

    • dysphemism says:

      @ d34thly
      My favorite part was when you beat up the pussy! Right on, bra!

      I agree that CODBLOPS is xtreme, to the maxx. Sometimes, when I see stuff that is gay (or even just queer), it really pisses me off. So what do I do? I get loaded on Patron and dominate lesser men in CODBLOPS. (Insert reference to others’ impotence.) Because I’m a man. And also xtreme!

      I’m not gonna half-ass my way through life; I’m going to achieve something. What’s the point of playing a game if you’re not the best at it? CODBLOPS was the first game I ever played, and now I have to play it forever to be the best at it, because I’m all about extreme performance and achievement in life. (Insert casually hateful comment about, I dunno, people with autism or Parkinson’s or something.)

      Sorry for the wall of text, guys. It’s just that when people aren’t passionate about things that don’t matter, it makes me want to kick puppies and trample daisies and push old ladies down stairs!

    • d34thly says:

      @Sheng-ji and the rest

      No i know you and the rest are just busting my balls, hence the smile in my award reply:)

    • psyk says:

      @rayne117

      That’s because peole like you and d34thly are runing the game by being fucking horrible noobs who have no idea how to advance in the game or play as a team.

    • bear912 says:

      What the hell is going on here?

    • d34thly says:

      My account name is strafeshot on steam and d34thly on origin and d34thly on GFWL so if you’re not a pussy give me your game handle so we can handle it online. @Crying i can kill your whole team at least 3 times over before you even notice me. @psyk tell me what games you play and your game handle before you can call me a pussy or n00b. See pussies always talk but never back it up, I live at 8025 Florida Ave N. Brooklyn Park, MN 55445 if you want to sort it out in person.Come LAN, but I wouldn’t recommend calling me a n00b or pussy in person. Losers hate competition that’s why I am wrecking the game for psyk. You guessed wrong psyk I lead my team to winning but you’re too pussy to find out as you won’t tell anyone your handle or what you play.BTW psyk why are you sending my links of my house on bing maps and a link to Mark Bradford. You’re all talk and a pussy I doubt you would even have the balls to call or show up or even join a game I’m in.

      I hope to see anyone who flames me in game, actually i hope to see anyone here in game. Bring your best and kill me allot as my most memorably fun matches are the ones where I get my ass handed to me.

    • psyk says:

      LOL

      Glitching under the map is not leet skills

      You getting a high k/d is not winning or the point, your team winning is.

      I’m guessing your the sort of person who wont play free for all games and has to stick to team based while ignoring the obejctives and camping for kills.

      Edit – http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/8025-Florida-Ave-N-Brooklyn-Park-MN-55445/1893452_zpid/

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHA that’s a nice graph

      Edit – http://kotaku.com/5845389/grown-man-hunts-chokes-boy-over-call-of-duty-game

    • d34thly says:

      @dysphemism

      now that’s the way to flame me. My stupid tantrum about anything worth spending time doing is worth doing well was not a total loss.I nearly pissed myself reading this and realizing what a roidrage dick i am sounding like.Seriously funny stuff dysphemism, thanx for the good laugh.

    • shizamon says:

      Wow,
      I can’t imagine how hollow your life must be to put a game and the competition from it on such a high priority…

    • bear912 says:

      I am so very confused. Good day to you all. I think I will go hibernate.

    • d34thly says:

      @shizamon
      “they put a priority on what they are spending time at, they are really good at everything they do, they only have to work one day a week to earn the same as most working class households, they must have a hollow life.”
      keep telling yourself that every time a woman rejects you, every party your not invited to, every club that won’t let you enter, every lack of promotion or success and every person that thinks you’re a moron. Competition is what makes everything great, technology, gaming, sports, science, sex, work. EVERYTHING is better with competition. the only hollow part of my life is talking to dipshits who don’t understand that.

    • Mr E Meats says:

      All this rage over a game? Really? Intelligent conversation please, no one wants to read your internet novel either. Go back to IGN.

      In response to the actual topic, is it really that surprising? I had a feeling all this “built for PC” talk was a clever prank. I wonder if actually cheating results in dismemberment.

      Edit: There’s also a difference between competition and being a twat. You are the latter.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      Beating someone up is not something to be proud of. It’s something to go to jail for.

    • turd_ferguson says:

      Hey make sure to tell your parents that I’m sorry about their property value.

    • Sleepymatt says:

      Wow that’s an awful lot of pent up anger there. Not sure why rearranging someone’s face is meant to earn our respect… Perhaps the Daily Mail really was right that we gamers can’t tell reality from fantasy :/

  2. Choca says:

    Well, we wouldn’t want people to have fun the way they want to have it now, would we ?

  3. AMonkey says:

    If I got banned from Origin it wouldn’t be a big deal since I don’t own any games on it.

    But thanks EA for giving me a good reason to never buy anything from you digitally!

    • Shooop says:

      Better not buy any games from EA in the future ever then if you want to keep it that way. Because every game they release from now on will be tethered to an Origin account.

      Oh and buying retail won’t save you. It’s basically a malicious version of Steam – buy the disk, it makes you install and create an Origin account to tie your game to.

    • KillahMate says:

      “It’s basically a malicious version of Steam – buy the disk, it makes you install and create an Origin account to tie your game to.”
      Not that I’m not a huge Valve fanboy, but what you’re describing sounds like just a regular version of Steam :-)

    • anduz says:

      Yeah, you buy a game like Deus Ex and it’s tied to your steam account. But then I’m pretty sure steam wouldn’t ban you for joining servers that show up in the official game browser.

      I mean if you don’t read the news how would you know it was illegal?

      But to be fair both steam and origin is screwing us up the ass.

  4. Gormongous says:

    I’m going to go back in time and tell younger me that someday companies will take all their games away from you for not playing their newest game how they intended.

  5. Hirmetrium says:

    At the risk of attracting ire, Steam already does ban you and you lose all your games – the offenses however tend to be hacking rather than modding, and generally you can appeal.

    Nice to see it confirmed that I won’t buy anything on origin – that said, does anybody know if “registered” games are banned from ALL EA servers? I have CNC4 on both Steam and Origin, would that be impacted?

    • jezcentral says:

      Not all your games, “just” the ones that use the same engine. E.g. Source games, or all your CODs.

      (And quite right, too. Hanging’s too good for them… ect ect)

    • Kollega says:

      Yeah, i also wanted to note that – and there was that uproar about hat scamming leading to a loss of the whole account. But Steam mostly punishes clientside hacks, not server modding.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      There is a huge difference between hacking a game and joining a hacked server – if Origin were stating they would ban you for hacking the maps, using tools to compromise protected areas of their server, download private data and edit it, fair enough, but simply joining a map that has been edited by someone else via the same site you would join the legitimate servers is not a bannable offence, neither on steam or I doubt on Origin

    • bansama says:

      @Hirmetrium

      At the risk of attracting ire, Steam already does ban you and you lose all your games – the offenses however tend to be hacking rather than modding, and generally you can appeal.

      VAC bans are permanent and cannot be appealed. Quoting Valve’s own support article on VAC:

      Steam Support cannot remove the ban on your account

      https://support.steampowered.com/kb_article.php?ref=4044-QDHJ-5691

      And in the very few occasions when VAC bans have been reversed it’s been due to obvious bugs with the VAC system, not due to someone attempting to appeal their ban.

    • Evil Timmy says:

      jezcentral: Valve doesn’t even go that far. If you pick up a VAC ban, you can’t play on VAC servers. You can still play everything in single-player and in multi on unsecured servers, which they even helpfully tell you how to find. See https://support.steampowered.com/kb_article.php?ref=4044-QDHJ-5691

      I was pretty psyched for Battlefield 3, but now that more details are coming to light, I’m seriously reconsidering my purchase. Origin’s a piece of garbage, the in-browser server list doesn’t seem to work very well, and they picked a horrible map for the beta. Never was a big fan of rush anyways, but this map actually seems worse than those in BC2, and for a game that’s a month out (which means two weeks before gold) there’s a surprising number of bugs, and this in what they chose to release to the public. It’s been downgraded from a must-buy to a wait-and-see.

    • Dominic White says:

      Good to see the ‘Valve will shut down your account and steal all your games!’ nonsense shut down early. They’ll flag your account as a known cheater, which stops you from playing on servers that specifically block cheaters, but that’s about it. To actually get a full ban, you have to do something pretty heinous, along the lines of straight-up credit card fraud or theft.

    • Deano2099 says:

      Or something awfully heinous like raising a PayPal dispute or exercising your right to a credit card chargeback if you’re not getting the service you paid for.

    • Archonsod says:

      Or indeed just paying through Paypal and having them not process the transaction quickly enough.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Deano and Archonsod, if these actually happened exactly as you have stated, why don’t you take them to small claims court – they won’t even turn up to represent themselves and you would get your games back and a few pounds to cover your fees (£25)

    • Hirmetrium says:

      @ Dominic White: With respect, that was the impression I was under. It’s hardly “non-sense” when I haven’t been banned myself and don’t know first hand – frankly I’m a bit shocked they don’t nuke you off the face of the planet for cheating. They seem to hate it when you want something refunded.

      But yes. Anybody know what happens to games you’ve registered on your origin account? Trying to protect my purchases here…

    • Starky says:

      @Deano and Archonsod
      Rubbish – Steam have (and rightfully) frozen accounts during such disputes, something intended to cover their arses against fraud (say like someone buying a bunch of new games, selling the account then doing a chargeback), not punish a legitimate gamer. I’ve heard of them lasting up to 2-3 weeks at the most, and they’re never permanent bans.

      I don’t think there has been a single case (oh there have been rumours and anecdotal bullshit, and flat out lies, but nothing with any real proof), I may be wrong and there may be a few unlucky souls.

      Still a temporary freeze while steam sort out a payment issue isn’t even in the same ballpark as a permanent ban and deletion of account.
      It’s happened too me, I was only locked out for 5 or 6 days (offline mode still worked for me), and that delay was due to paypal been slow as hell, and not responding properly (paypal really does suck when anything goes wrong).

    • d34thly says:

      @ the subject of Steam banning

      Steam ONLY bans you from the multiplayer component of the game you WERE cheating on and no single player ban of same game or any other games. I know this from experience as I spent weeks debating it with Steam only to find out from my oldest son that he used some stat/level boost zip for Modern Warfare 2 that he had found online. My son got grounded from gaming for 6 months(we don’t tolerate cheating in this house) and I thought Steam handled it very appropriately, especially considering how irate and irrational my emails to Steam were getting before I found out my son WAS cheating. Steam doesn’t ban offline or singleplayer mode of any game and only bans the multiplayer component of the game YOU cheated on. Steam would never ban you from stumbling upon a hacked server either because in the year I played Modern Warfare 2 I stumbled into several servers that seemingly gave me a whole rank after every match.I played several servers with a low gravity mod and some with an unlimited ammo and nades mod.

    • Vinraith says:

      I love how anytime anyone describes a negative experience they had with Steam/Vale there are always a dozen supporters nearby to assure us that it never really happened. If you’re going to be a corporate shill, you should at least get paid for it.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      @Vinraith

      Mainly because they are so unbelievable in the face of very believable stories like D34thly’s and Starky’s – don’t get me wrong, I’d be just as critical if they replaced the word steam with origin, valve with ea etc – it’s just not the way a business can operate in the modern world and if they are trying to, then people need to understand that they have rights and can dispute these decisions cheaply and easily using our quite frankly excellent legal system IF their stories are accurate.

      Of course if their stories are a pack of lies, then they deserve to be called out on them, I’m sure you would also agree!

    • Vinraith says:

      What’s “unbelievable” about instances of a large corporation making a mistake, then blaming the customer for it? This kind of thing happens constantly to customers of other companies, and considering my own rather negative experiences with Steam support it hardly seems like a stretch that they’re no different than anyone else.

      This bizarre faith in Valve’s omnibenevolence is just creepy.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      What’s unbelievable is that you’d sit there and take it, resorting to whinging about it on the internet, not spend £25 on getting the situation corrected and getting access to your games and your £25, possibly a little bit more back.

      Oh and after claiming that you got banned from steam, go on to make posts which reference your current live steam account merely adds to the general atmosphere of disbelief.

      But you haven’t actually responded to the bit I hoped you would. If the stories are lies, do the people who created those lies deserve to be called out on them?

    • Vinraith says:

      1) I sincerely doubt most people are even aware that small claims court is an option.

      2) I sincerely doubt most people believe they’d win if they did take it to small claims court, especially in light of Valve’s terms of service which state explicitly they can terminate your account at any time for any reason.

      I can only speak for myself, but it certainly wouldn’t occur to me to waste further time and money trying to drag a large corporation into court over something like this when the terms of service clearly state they can do whatever they damn well please.

      As to the other question sure, if you’ve got evidence that they’re lying by all means use it to call them out. If all you have is specious reasoning on the other hand, I’d suggest that running around accusing people of lying because they have something negative to say about a company you like might say more about you than it does about them.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      If people are ignorant of their options, then today, I have been helpful.

      I have successfully won 7 cases against IGN and 3 against Sony for wrongfully blocking my youtube content. Not once did either of these corporations attempt to defend themselves. So the little guy can and does win all the time. It’s easy. You also understand that they could write whatever they want in their TOS, it doesn’t mean they can ban you at will for a reason that wouldn’t stand up in court. Whatever is written in their TOS cannot erode your consumer rights.

      And you seriously wouldn’t spend a trifling amout of money on the off chance you could get even one game you paid for back – in the pay pal example, that’s an open and shut case, the hearing would last as long as it took the judge to read out the compensation – providing the guy provided the appropriate evidence with his application – the email from valve explaining why he was banned and the date he authorised the paypal transaction should be enough.

      It’s good to know that you do think liars should be called, even if they are telling porkies supporting a side you also support. I should point out, I am not talking specifically about the two in the thread above.

      Anyway Vinraith, how about we get back on subject, what is your opinion of Origin in light of the news this article is reporting? Or are you just a 1 dimensional valve hating troll with nothing useful to contribute the the current discussion?

    • Shooop says:

      Steam doesn’t prevent you from playing the game ever again though. What the VAC ban does is prevent you from joining any VAC enabled server for that game.

      So you can still continue playing the game just not on any server you want. Plus a modded server isn’t a violation according to VAC. So this comparison is totally off.

    • DrGonzo says:

      He is a corporate shill for pointing out that Valve don’t ban you from games, but only servers? I thought he was setting it straight. There is a massive difference between entirely banning you from a service and removing all of the games you paid for and simply banning you from approved servers.

      Bluntly put, if he is a corporate shill, then you are a cunt, who judging by your other comments is blinded by nostalgia.

    • gamma says:

      There is a significant difference between a VAC ban and the Origin accounts ban in question:

      VAC bans derive of active installation of game hacks from its user, while Origin account bans (if EA goes through with this) may derive of simply navigating their own Battlelog system.

    • CryingTheAnnualKingo says:

      Wait a second here haters: Valve is not some huge, faceless, monolithic corporation like your fantasy tells you.

      It’s not even technically a corporation, like an EA or Activision. It’s still a privately owned company that isn’t beholden to shareholders and boards of directors. I’m not saying private companies don’t screw people over, (edit: thanks Till).

      Just thought I’d clear that up.

    • Baines says:

      To be fair, EA isn’t saying that playing on a hacked server will get you banned. They are saying that playing on a hacked server puts your account at risk (due to whatever the hacked server is doing), which in turn can lead to getting banned.

      The extent of the ban *is* an issue. Probably primarily not from any evil intentions on EA’s part, but rather due to poor planning and integration of EA accounts and games. (I can’t remember, but was it EA that ended up banning people from their games when they got banned from a forum?) But it isn’t like EA is the first company to go too far.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      It’s not even technically a corporation, like an EA or Activision. It’s still a privately owned company that isn’t beholden to shareholders and boards of directors.

      *cough cough*

      © 2011 Valve Corporation

      Most larger companies (and many small ones) are corporations. Not all are public[ly traded], which is what you’re thinking of.

    • Battlehenkie says:

      Read and compare the Steam and EA Origin EULA’s, you’ll see that they adopt very different stances towards ‘compromise of the License’.

    • Llewyn says:

      Sounds like the small claims procedure has some interesting and undocumented remedies. I wonder if that counts as a feature or a bug.

    • Deano2099 says:

      I would absolutely use Small Claims if it happened to me. I think I’d probably win, but my worry would be in enforcing the judgment to be honest.

  6. Captchist says:

    Want to clarify – is this digital only games I’d be locked out of, or would it include physical copy games which require an Origin account?

    • Avenger says:

      Account ban = You can’t login
      You can’t login = Your activations are gone forever
      No activations = Look again. Your game DVDs are now tea trays.

    • kyrieee says:

      DVDs make shit tea trays

    • Koozer says:

      I beg to differ. Why, I am using one for such purposes right now. Admittedly it does have a free Mario Kart drinks mat on top of it to cover the hole…

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Laserdiscs make much better tea trays, you can get a good 6 mugs on them and biscuits too.

    • Pirateman3 says:

      My 8″ Floppy Disks make excellent beer coasters. And if someone ever needs three proper fonts for an Apple ii Engraving machine, I have ‘em covered…

    • MadMinstrel says:

      Personally I’m partial to shiny hard drive platters.

    • Avenger says:

      I am sorry but as tea trays go, your options are only limited to DVDs or CDs because they are the only things compatible with your PC mounted, auto-eject cup holder.

  7. Orija says:

    Gah! My first ever reply fail.

  8. Avenger says:

    I don’t think it would stick. It is an empty threat.

    In any sensible world, if you prevent people from using your services that YOU have charged them for, leaning only on reasons YOU have come up with and not NOT refund them the price, there WOULD be legal issues up your nose

    What is the world coming to?

    • Burning Man says:

      EA has done it before.

      http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2011/03/11/ea-forum-bans-can-lock-you-out-of-games/

      The only reason they eventually retracted that particular ban was because it was featured and screamed at in every major gaming news site. I have seen others on the Bioware forums who say they are still banned.

    • Avenger says:

      “The only reason they eventually retracted that particular ban was because it was featured and screamed at in every major gaming news site”

      With good reason, of course.

      However, time will come when EA will be big enough to shrug off any amount of bad PR. A legal standoff is the only way this can possibly end properly.

      Which, considering the army of lawyers EA has, is fairly useless.

      So, yes. We are heading to a direction where we will end up buying games from people who may or may not “feel like” they should allow us to play those games

    • d34thly says:

      I made the comment on a forum once about how “people should pirate EA games to try them before they buy them”. This ensued 8 months of my packets being inspected with permission from Comcast. I have the letters from Comcast and EA framed.

  9. Dood says:

    My guess is that these are probably scare tactics. A ban like this taking all your games away!) would not stand in court, considering that you would have found those servers using their server browser. This is sort of equivalent to them suggesting you connect to this server (It being listed in EA’s own server browser).

    • YeOldeSnake says:

      Court?
      Didnt EA also have a “You cant sue us” clause in the EULA?

    • nil says:

      “Mandatory arbitration” is trendy these days, I hear.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      @YeOldeSnake They may have, but I’d love to see the look on a judges face as their lawyers tried to have a case thrown out on that basis.

    • Hidden_7 says:

      Also wasn’t that Sony and not EA? Although EA might have done it too, wouldn’t put it past them.

    • Kandon Arc says:

      @YeOldeSnake:

      You can’t sign away your legal rights.

    • LTK says:

      I’m thinking the same. I don’t believe they would ban players or hosts for some harmless modding of the player count, but if something more malicious is happening on modded servers, and DICE finds out, they can at least claim that they (the players) have been warned.

    • bigdeadbug says:

      As Nil said it would most likely go to an arbitrator. It shouldn’t be biased either so I guess theres every chance you come out of it on top. Even if it is then you have grounds for going to court.

      As for fare warning, I wouldn’t say some forum post that was taken down soon after counts as it (how can they prove i ever saw it). I assume they will post something official soon enough though.

      To be honest the first part of the post was probably just a warning that something could happen if you log on such servers so just avoid it. The second part seems more of a clarification than anything and I’m sure with this kind of fuss going on they will change it somewhat.

      I would like to know if the mods made to the servers somehow impede their ability to gather data though.

    • Herkimer says:

      @Sheng Ji and Kandon Arc:

      At least in the US, you most certainly may sign a contract that limits your recourse to arbitration, rather than a court trial. And in general, you most certainly may “sign away your rights.”

      An arbitration clause is one example. They’re common. They’re routinely upheld. About the only way to get them invalidated is to argue to a judge that the terms of the contract were so heavily stacked against you that to enforce the clause would be unconscionable. That’s an extremely high bar, especially in light of some recent US Supreme Court cases, AT&T v. Concepcion being the most recent. In the US, both public policy and federal law favor arbitration. If you sign a contract, and the contract has an arb clause, you’re almost certainly going to arbitration rather than court.

      Other examples of “signing away your rights”: jurisdiction and forum selection clauses. Let’s say that you live in New York, and you want to do business with a company located in California. If the company does have to litigate, it’s going to want to litigate on home turf. So they’ll insert clauses in the contract saying that, if you litigate, the litigation must be brought in California courts, and must be heard under California law. Absent those clauses, you would ordinarily have every right to bring the case in a New York court, and there’s a better than even chance that New York law would apply. But hey, you just signed that right away. These clauses are routinely enforced.

      How about a do not compete clause? You’re a smart guy, and your company doesn’t want you to go work for their rivals. So they insert a clause in your contract saying that you can’t perform the same kind of work, within a certain geographical radius, for a certain period of time after you leave employment with the company. Guess what? You just signed away your rights. And these clauses are routinely enforced.

      There’s this unfounded notion floating around that we lawyers insert all this verbiage into contracts just for shits and giggle, and when the contract gets presented to the wise and learned judge, he’ll shake his head and say “oh ho ho, silly lawyers, you can’t sign away your rights.” It’s bullshit, and it needs to DIAF. The reason that most contract language is in contracts is because it’s been litigated before and it’s stood up in court.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Here in the UK and Europe, it’s considered to be against someone’s human rights to ask them to give up their right to a fair trial. Also if an individual wants to take a company to court, it will be heard in a courtroom local to the individual. I think the states still suffer from a bias towards big companies, a hangover from the days when they wanted to make America a very attractive place for foreign investment.

      I know that most contracts are very carefully constructed and every clause has a meaning, but you can’t deny that if EA were to ban a customer from all their paid for games for the above reason – as it clearly states in the EULA, and that customer were to take them to court, the customer would stand a very good chance of winning.

      Here in the UK you certainly can’t write a contract that breaches the consumer protection act or any other act which is in place to prevent companies eroding the rights of individuals – we may not have a bill of rights, but the rights we do have are set in stone.

      It has to be said though that we do have do not compete clauses and they too are completely enforceable, you have the right to work, but not the right to the exact work you want to do. If you want to sell a product or service in Europe though, you have to do it under that countries law and will be held to account in that country – don’t like it, don’t sell there is the attitude for the most part.

      I think you’re correct though, most people don’t understand what rights they do and don’t have and don’t understand how serious contract law is, however on the flip side, most businesses know that people are often too ignorant or lazy to use the courts and so can often get their own way.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      Guess what? You just signed away your rights. And these clauses are routinely enforced.

      Every day I find myself happier and happier that I left the US for the EU.

      Basic sanity in labor and consumer law is a good thing.

    • Dozer says:

      Set-in-stone rights aren’t universally desirable though. I recently read an article by someone saying that he’d be more employable if, for example, the employer wasn’t required by law/employee rights/what have you to provide 28 days of paid holiday a year. He would rather save up some money and take the time off unpaid, for a duration that suits him and the company, and he’d be more valuable to his employer as a result and expect a higher salary.

      If you have rights (as a consumer, employee, tenant) those rights have a cost, and that makes you less valuable to the producer, employer, landlord. This means there are transactions that don’t take place because the extra cost of providing the statutory rights makes it too expensive.

      For example, the shared house I used to live in had an outside garage converted to a bedroom. The council got wind of it eventually, and enforced the tenant’s rights to have proper insulation and access to a toilet and kitchen without needing to walk across a garden and past a locked door. We didn’t want or need those rights, being ablebodied and possessing electric heaters. But the tenant’s rights cannot be abrogated, so we had to go down to four tenants, which meant the rent would either have to go up or the landlord wouldn’t be covering the mortgage. He decided to sell the house, and we all had to move out. We’d have much rather stayed in the uninsulated garage.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Dozer, while i’m sure that seems very unfair to you, I don’t want to live in a room that is “not fit for human habitation” which is what your garage was. What does that have to do with you if you are happy – well, what stops that landlord buying another house and renting me a similar room telling me it’s a bedroom. What if I then develop a disease due to the poor conditions?

      Or what if he had sold the house to me telling me it was 4 bed, when it was 3. I move in with my 3 children and it’s not until winter I discover that it’s not actually a bedroom.

      Sometimes it’s about what’s right for everyone, not just you.

  10. Kollega says:

    So… why exactly would EA want to take away someone’s games because they went on a server with increased playercount, except for showing off how petty they can be?

    I get that the blanket ban on all modding is probably easier than seeing what affects OMGSTATS and what dosen’t, but that’s the impression i am getting.

  11. HexagonalBolts says:

    Who gives a toss about stats anymore?

    Also, if the post has been deleted, at least that shows a possibility that this was somebody at EA getting a bit carried away.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      This

      Let’s not forget, forum “staff” for computer game forums tend to be unpaid ex members of the community.

    • Aemony says:

      However a quick search on Google shows that Bazajaytee is anything but an “unpaid ex member of the community”.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      If you did a google search and found his wage packet, Dice have big privacy problems

      You should know, at Climax, we called unpaid beta testers “Associate Producers” It helps to give people a fancy title if you are planning on exploiting them.

      However, I am aware that I could be wrong

      EDIT: I was wrong, he just tweeted me!

    • suibhne says:

      Pretty sure bazajaytee is a DICE lead or official PR monkey, not just some random EA rep. As such, his post should be paid some attention.

    • d34thly says:

      True, stats don’t mean allot anymore. I was seeing people with top prestige levels in Black Ops on day 2 when it took me 2 months playing 8 hours everyday to get there.

  12. wazups2x says:

    No! I don’t want to lose the hundreds of games I… Oh, wait, this is Origin were talking about? Never mind then, ban away.

  13. Sheng-ji says:

    If they did follow through and take away access to all your games on your EA account, they would be incredibly vulnerable from a legal point of view, I expect this is why the post got removed rather than any negative publicity

  14. Avenger says:

    Good luck making this stand in court, EA…

  15. SlappyBag says:

    Surely they would take the “hackers” for helping them stress test a server more and for showing these loopholes? Surely all the stats are going to get re-set anyway so it makes no difference. Why must be they be so militant about it all.

    • Mechanicus_ says:

      It’s staggering how stupid that post by the EA rep was, either he was insanely exceeding his authority just to abuse customers during a fucking promotional event (the demo) or he publicly posted an EA policy so vile they could not possibly intend for it to be put out in the open.

      Steam made most of us comfortable with the idea of “one login for all games” because Valve was OK about it, but now we get to experience how a company like EA handles a similar system – the result? They are so excited about getting that choke chain around your neck they can’t help but give it a tug in anticipation.

      This sort of thing is already having a chilling effect on things like modding – the Dead Island tweak thread in the Steam forums had a huge disclaimer in it warning that they had no idea which alterations might cause Valve to ban you for the cheating; presumably this has been a problem in other games then?

    • wazups2x says:

      “This sort of thing is already having a chilling effect on things like modding – the Dead Island tweak thread in the Steam forums had a huge disclaimer in it warning that they had no idea which alterations might cause Valve to ban you for the cheating; presumably this has been a problem in other games then?”

      That was talking about VAC banning you from playing online. Valve doesn’t care what you do to your games. You can mod all you want with Steam, Valve has never discouraged modding.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      On the subject of the dead island mod, I have been modding steam games for a long time now, most of them feature a similar disclaimer because Valve have never openly said they are OK with it, but I’d be shocked if they weren’t aware of it. I think it’s most likely they only crack down on mods which give the user an unfair advantage in a multiplayer situation or replicate paid for (or potentially paid for) content. Even the Magic mods which allow you to put in your own cards and decks are still going strong, for offline use only.

  16. SprintJack says:

    What he means is that if your account get hacked the hacker might do things with your account that could lead to ban. So it’s just a warning that you could get hacked while playing on hacked servers.

  17. Milky1985 says:

    horrifyingly, “if your account does get banned it means any other EA game you have on your account would also be unavailable.”

    Is that even legal? I mean aside from teh “its in our terms and conditions” can they UK/EU law legally remove access to OTHER games simply for playing on a unoffical server?

    Any lawyers care to comment or is this another case of EA trying to scare people away from origin?

    • PoulWrist says:

      Play around with Steam like it and they take away all your games too :p So must be something you can just do. It’s a risk associated with the online distribution model that we’re so eager to embrace. The problem is that they responeded too early. The response, which was pulled, is probably true for when they fix it so that you can’t see the modified servers in the server browser.

      Nothing too unusual.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Terms and conditions are both less and more binding than people think. In civil law, there is always another point of view, yes you ticked the agree box, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you actually agree with everything in it in the way the EULA writer meant.

      So if I launch a computer game, I could write in my EULA “Any player who plays this game must not buy any game ever again form a competing company”

      There is nothing to prevent me making you agree to that before allowing you to play my game, but clearly, if I sent you a feedback form asking you what other games you’ve bought since mine and you indicated you had bought one from a competitor, if I were to cut off access to your game, despite what was in the EULA, you could use the courts to force me to return your access.

      So just remember, just because it is in the EULA, doesn’t mean it’s actually going to get the backing of the courts. On the other hand, if I wrote “Hacking the game will get you banned” and I detected you hacking, I could ban you and you would never win a court case against me. If I did not have that term in the EULA, you most likely would win back access.

      Civil law mainly deals with grey areas. I have used two examples where the end result was virtually guarenteed, but if you have a legitimate disagreement with a company, no matter what is in any EULA, you can make your case in court.

    • Milky1985 says:

      “Play around with Steam like it and they take away all your games too :p”

      No, Steam won’t take away your games for playing one of your multiplayer games on a server that is IN the master server list. If you modify steam to let you play all the games then they might do it, or you have a dodgy payment, only times i have heard about steam accoutn locks, nothign to do with actually playing games.

      Have seen your name pop up a few times before tho in convos like this!!!

      “In civil law, there is always another point of view, yes you ticked the agree box, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you actually agree with everything in it in the way the EULA writer meant.”

      What if you never actually accepted the eula but someone else did? With all PS3 updates now (and i have to do this every sodding week it seems) i take my cnotroller to my housemate and say “press teh x button for me will you”. I never accept the eula, he did. Do they have to prove that you (yes you, the person reading this, No you shouldn’t be doing that, put it away and stop playing with it!) accepted or is “they were using” classed is implied consent.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      @Milky1985 – Great point, and not an argument that could be ignored in court – I can’t think of a case where that has been tested but it would be really interesting! It could be argued that in your case you are giving away responsibility and allowing your housemate to accept for you, so you may want to think more along the lines of “My housemate played the game first without my knowledge and I guess must have accepted”. Be aware though that if you were taking EA to court, the burden of proof would be on you – though civil law does not need the stringent standards of proof as criminal law, a home made video on a phone of your housemate accepting the EULA on your console would probably be enough. Even if you could get into the game without accepting the EULA, doesn’t mean you can do what you like, a judge might take the point of view that you should have looked up the terms of use before purchase and hold you to those that were relevant at time of purchase.

      It’s difficult to say! Civil law is all about grey areas!

    • Milky1985 says:

      “a judge might take the point of view that you should have looked up the terms of use before purchase and hold you to those that were relevant at time of purchase.”

      Wouldn’t work with some sony eulas, they keep changing them and is why they want you to reaccept it :P

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Oh yeah I know, I mean’t they would hold you to the one valid on your day of purchase

    • SuperNashwan says:

      In the EU a term allowing EA to arbitrarily revoke all your licences for such a minor infraction would certainly be void by way of the unfair terms in consumer contracts Directive (93/13/EEC) because it’s so horrendously disproportionate.

  18. Kaira- says:

    So, wait, the announcement isn’t anymore on the forums? Seems like somebody figured out that might turn out bad, and they are preparing to rephrase. I hope.

  19. Hoaxfish says:

    ambulatory penises, screaming monstrous prejudice at people, cheating or swindling

    That sounds more like the common work environment at EA, so they probably wouldn’t notice the difference.

  20. Hoaxfish says:

    reply fail

  21. Dinger says:

    It’s not direct causality.

    What they’re saying is:
    A. Don’t do X
    B. We have a policy in place to ban accounts that do X.
    C. Official servers don’t cause your client to do X.
    D. We don’t know whether unofficial modded servers cause your client to do X.

    It’s also the completely wrong response. Everyone sees the game browser; a very small percentage waste their time on the forums. Even if they removed the servers from the list, EA/DICE would still need strong reasons to punish users for any problems arising from connecting to those servers (e.g., the servers exist explicitly for farming statistics).
    And, frankly, Origin can’t afford to be banning too many users at this point.

  22. Unaco says:

    Wow DICE. Way to overreact.

    • PoulWrist says:

      But they didn’t. The response was pulled.

    • Typhuseth says:

      No they did overreact then went “oh shit, we overreacted, delete it!”

  23. Squishpoke says:

    Don’t bother, EA/DICE. I’ll uninstall origin myself and never buy Battlefield 3, ever. Or any other game on Origin.

  24. Dath says:

    The fact that it got removed pretty fast hopefully means they realized how stupid they’d be if they went through with it..

  25. Zealuu says:

    So did they remove the post simply because what was stated in it wasn’t true, or did they, despite it being true, remove it as damage control – knowing that if the internet picked up on it, they’d have a looming PR disaster on their hands?

    • Optimaximal says:

      Well, they failed at the latter didn’t they…

    • Roshin says:

      They’re probably working on a more official response right now and trying to get the wording just right. It’ll probably pop back up soon enough.

      And this just after I pre-ordered BF3 last night. When will I ever learn?

  26. cliffski says:

    People need to realise that stats are just a number, and just for fun. It’s not real money. If I wanted to rule out people playing Gratuitous Space Battles with modded content, because it meant they could get unrealistic high scores, it would take more coding effort and maintenance than the entire online challenge system, plus crippling peoples freedom to mod their game.
    It’s a matter of diminishing returns.

    If someone is using wallhacks in an FPS, then yes, thats bad, and they should be banned from that game, but lets not use the equivilant of customer service weapons of mass destruction to deal with people who make the value of a database entry go up a bit quicker.

    • Typhuseth says:

      You are right that stats are just a number, but from the publisher point of view they are a massive marketing tool, GAME are offering free double xp periods if you buy COD from them, promotions are also available on the same sort of lines for crisps and soft drinks, as far as I’m aware these are just for cod for now, I haven’t seen any for BF but I haven’t really been looking.
      It seems as though publishers realise the ocd nature of their players and want to cash in on it to break their, presumably, well crafted and balanced systems but when players do it it’s bad. It really seems to me that from both sides of the arguement these systems are fundamentally broken and rife with abuse maybe it’s time a new system came in because as you say these are numbers on a spreadsheet is it worth all this time and effort?

    • Optimaximal says:

      I guess the problem is all the stats are tied to unlocks, which grant (demonstrably unfair) advantages to those who use them.

    • Deano2099 says:

      You’re right in general, but not so in this case. Because the game is in beta. So those numbers aren’t just for player vanity purposes, they’re for EA to balance the entire game around. Having false entries leak in to those datasets could well be an issue.

  27. Jorum says:

    I played a lot of Battlefield 1942 (probably at least 3 hours a day), not once did I wish there was unlocks or stats, and looking back I can’t imagine how they would have “improved” the experience.

    In fact unlocks and stats are probably the single worst thing you can put in a team-based multiplayer game as it inherently encourages people to think about what makes their stats look good, rather than what actually helps the team or winning the game.
    (I’m looking at you snipers).

    • Jad says:

      I played a lot of Battlefield 1942 (probably at least 3 hours a day), not once did I wish there was unlocks or stats

      Well, you’re actually misremembering your own experiences, you see. You didn’t have any fun with BF 1942. It lacked unlocks and achievements and ribbons and XP, which was a terrible oversight and failure on DICE’s part and quickly turned you off the game.

      In fact you became tired of 1942 after only an hour or so of play when you did not receive a single arbitrary reward or upgraded perk. You were also confused and overwhelmed by the fact that you had all of your class’s weapons and abilities available to you from the get-go: you wished that DICE had drip-fed you them as you ground out hours of gameplay.

      I know that you had this experience because I had the same: I definitely did not play hundreds of hours of Quake or UT or Counterstrike or Day of Defeat or Battlefield back in the day, because they were all missing out on the actual fun part of FPSes: leveling up.

      Thank god EA is promising “even more unlocks” for Battlefield 3, it ensures that the game will definitely be hundreds of times better than 1942, which you did not enjoy, no sir.

  28. Ape says:

    Stats!

    How the fuck am I playing the beta against people of rank 25+? This is a joke. It took months and months for me to do that in BFBC2.

    How is it possible? Is there some exploit or something?

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Alpha testers retained their stats

    • Walsh says:

      No they didn’t. People played on hacked servers.

    • Bi9GY says:

      There’s no reason to think they’re using hacked servers, I’m level 21 after a couple of (lengthy) nights play.

    • Stellar Duck says:

      For what it’s worth, I’ve played for a grand total of 4 hours and 23 minutes and I’m level 11. And I’m rather terrible at the game at times. I go from the top of the leader board to the bottom from one match to the next, so it’s not like I’ve gotten massive amounts of points all the time.

  29. aircool says:

    If they banned ‘proper’ cheaters, that would be good, but banning someone for unknowingly joining a naughty server which appears in the official browser is completely hat stand.

    • d34thly says:

      Bottom line: I join a server on EA’s server browser in the same legit server list and minutes later I am no longer able to log in to origin/EA or play any games I’ve purchased through origin/EA without a lengthy court battle. NO THANKS!

  30. jack4cc says:

    Someone should fix the title – “Joining servers may lead to a ban” sounds right. FFS, it’s the offical server list !

  31. Knah says:

    The reaction seems harsh…

    … yet, there is a company allowing you to play a game, which isn’t quite done, which they need to test on performance, bugs and so on and so on.
    Why go ahead an misuse the privilege to play, to already mod around on it.
    Performance of Servers and client Hardware will probably change a lot when adding 3x Players.
    Balancing will probably alter too.

    Let them get their infos on these issues and start modding when shit is done.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      The problem is: These servers are showing up on the official site in the official list of official servers, the only distinguishing feature being that they allow more players on. If you hadn’t read that forum post, how would you know you were joining a hacked server, you may just think that there were versions of the map running with more players! That is why it is not harsh to criticize them for threatening to cut access to ALL your EA games for joining one of these servers.

    • HorstSchlemmer says:

      These servers are appering in the official servers list, banning everyone who joins would be a very stupid idea… yet it’s EA, so that might happen nevertheless

    • RobF says:

      Also, beta testing a game for a large company isn’t a privilege, man.

    • JustOneWay says:

      Try not to forget. If it is free, you are not the customer.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      But you are a consumer. Anyway, I don’t quite see how that has any relevance – you are still an origin customer if you have paid for content which has been threatened to be banned

  32. Joe Duck says:

    The worrying thing is what their first reaction was when they discovered the hacking.
    It means that they are aware of what kind of tool their TOS is and that they are ready to use it at the slightest problem. In previous discussions, some people argued that those TOS are “lawyer speak” and that they would never get used. I think it is evident that is not the case. The want to have a big gun and to put it in your face as often as necessary.

  33. Thermal Ions says:

    It makes we wonder about how EA (or Bazajaytee and co) actually view the Open Beta.

    Do they view it as a true beta, looking for bugs to be exposed through having a wider test audience and increased server load OR is it primarily viewed as a marketing exercise to increase sales, thus possibly explaining the defensive posture and pulling out of the big stick?

    The later wouldn’t surprise me.

  34. bit_crusherrr says:

    Using Quick Join can put you into hacked servers. So you could be banned without trying to do something wrong.

  35. Davee says:

    Uh, I could at least have some (not much) understanding to why they would to this after the retail release, but in the Beta? I mean, it’s only going to last a few more days and then our stats won’t be saved anyway, why ban your testers? They should encourage the server hosts to break/crack the game as much as they can as long as they continuously report it all to DICE/EA and take it down once successful – this would then enable them to plug these security holes for the upcoming release. But I guess EA is simply too much “OMG THEY IS HACKER BANHAMMER NOW” (and the same towards legit players who fall victims to it, apparently).

    In other news; I like BF3. Not so much the sequel to BF2 as the next BC game though. The gunplay is great fun, but I’d like to see a few more BF2 features in the game. :(

  36. Carra says:

    Banning all your games is horrendous. I’ve got for over a thousand dollars worth of games on steam.

    Just banning BF3 beta I can live with but banning all games, nono.

  37. Oryon says:

    They just keep giving me more and more reasons to never ever touch their shit.

    • Dozer says:

      If you do ever touch their shit, wash your hands with hot water and soap immediately. Else you’ll risk e.coli infections and all kinds of nasty things.

    • d34thly says:

      Alright this is off topic, but I just quit smoking so apologies to all. if I pissed anyone off I severely hope you find me in game and kick the shit out of me repeatedly: strafeshot on Steam, d34thly on Origin and GFWL and my offer still stands to sort it out in person 8025 Florida Ave N. Brooklyn Park MN 55445 (bring your PC and some friends). Once again sorry and Origin sucks.

  38. Battlehenkie says:

    Goes to show how much EA values its (potential) customers. It’s astounding how few people care to raise questions with themselves or EA on the BF3/Origin boards.

    • d34thly says:

      @Battlehenkie
      That’s because raising questions in a negative light on origin/EA/BF3 boards Will get your account banned even faster. Just as it happened to Arno’s account for using the term soulsucking EA, your whole EA account will get banned for saying or pointing to anything negative about them on their official forums.

    • Dozer says:

      So… have two accounts set up. One for your games, and another for posting on forums. Does that work?

      My PC is too old to play any EA games more recent than Sim City 4 so none of this affects me directly. But using the methods of terrorist cells, or the Christian church under Roman persecution, seems to be the winning idea. Multiple separate accounts with as little as possible to link each one as possible. The hazard is it leads to schizophrenia in the user, trying to remember all those different identities.

  39. GeForceFX says:

    The sad thing is that the modded servers are not the bad part. There are already HACKERS in the game. It’s still in beta, yet.. there are hacks for it. What the hell?

    • Gunrun says:

      You must not play betas much. This has happened with every single beta product ever. It’s actually more common than retail because
      1. The game is free, and you can do it on a standalone account
      2. The anti-cheat often isn’t working or isn’t trained properly. I’ve never even seen someone kicked from a BF3 server by punkbuster yet so I assume it’s not even running in the beta.

  40. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    I thought you can’t mod BF3?

    Well, if you can’t mod ‘em, hack ‘em!

  41. Cruyelo says:

    I’m sorry, but
    “It’s not like they’re replacing character models with ambulatory penises, screaming monstrous prejudice at people, cheating or swindling. They’re just raising the playercount because they want to explore the possibilities of the game.”
    This is actually wrong, there IS cheating on these servers and quite a lot of it. Some of them add unlimited ammo with no reloading, some of them screw with your character stats, some of them led to instantly gaining many many ranks.

    NOTE : They didn’t simply say “anyone who host or join such a server will be banned”, they actually said that joining those servers could screw up with your account and if it did, you could get banned.
    And they did say that if you decided to play on those servers anyway, to limit yourself to the ones closest to the real thing to avoid such problems.

    It’s really not as Evil-And-Stupid as it’s made out to be in this article. It’s definitely stupid that anyone could lose games because of this, banning from the beta of one game, or from one game, shouldn’t affect other games. But the banning itself isn’t without reason.

  42. Deano2099 says:

    Here’s the thing: companies should never have the right to unilaterally ban your access from all games. A suspension if they think you might have been hacked is fair enough, as it’s designed for the benefit of the user, even if a false positive is inconvenient (and this is where the majority of Steam horror stories come from, and then get sorted out – the majority: some are legit).

    However a company shouldn’t be able to use it as a punitive measure itself. In this case, it’s clear cut. But imagine if EA banned accounts because someone was detected using a pirated version of Mass Effect 3 say. Sure: they deserve it, absolutely. But that isn’t how the world works. It isn’t how the justice system works. If EA detect someone pirating something and want to take them to court then that’s fair enough. I’d support that. But banning them from their games, which they paid for, and taking no further action…

    It’s basically allowing companies to fine individuals arbitrarily. With the fine limited only by the maximum value of the games they have on their account. It’s bypassing the law and any sort of checks and balances entirely.

    [At this point, lots of people will reply with analogies that either support or debunk this, the truth is there is nothing like the sort of services we have for digital game distribution in the consumer space right now, the pay once, download as much as you like for an unstated period of time is new.]

    • Sheng-ji says:

      I agree, entirely – I don’t have an analogy for you, I just agree!

    • Dozer says:

      It’s like buying a soft drink in the IKEA restaurant with unlimited refills, and then they get upset if you want to use your own drinking glass.

  43. MrYo says:

    Why don’t they see that mods are actually a good thing? Remember Counter-Strike? Was originally a mod for Half-Life, now one of the most successful FPS. Come on EA, support mods like you did in BF2!

  44. tstapp1026 says:

    EA leaves me no option. I must lower my intelligence quotient to make my following statement:

    “Fuck you EA… fuck you and your games in the face.”

    Ahem… apologies to anyone who read that, but trust me, it was necessary.

  45. diamondmx says:

    This is the exact kind of bollocks that makes people uneasy about Origin.
    EA will pull this shit time and time again.

  46. jackelope says:

    Setup a hacked L4D or TF2 server…Valve gives you a cookie for being awesome.

    Setup a hacked BF3 server…EA gets their panties in a bunch and deletes your entire EA game library.

    Even the real cheaters on Steam only have online play removed. But to take away entire games because of online shenanigans? Just one more strike against Origin.

  47. Makariel says:

    *sigh*

    Dice, EA, why are you doing this? I was really looking forward to Battlefield 3, you know? I still kinda want to play it, but every second piece of BF3-related news is a major buzzkill. I already cancelled my pre-order. Now I’m not even sure if I want to buy BF3 at all. It’s not like there wouldn’t be any other games coming out this fall (Modern Warfare 3, Skyrim, Dark Souls, Rage, Guild Wars 2, Batman Arkham City, Uncharted 3) or that I wouldn’t have any older games to play.

    *sigh*

  48. Tei says:

    If EA is serius about selling games on Origin, must change the rules with banning people from the games that have paid.

    I think is Ok to do something like a ban a account in game A, for cheating in game A. Modding is not cheating, only cheating is cheating. But account wide bans are way too much. The users don’t have to paid for the ineficiencies of EA. Learn how to program a database, and store in that database what game affect the ban, make it per-game.

    This is a important issue. If you buy a lot of games, the money quickly add. You can’t ban a person from 2000$ of games, just because he modified a file to change the a graphic color. 2000$ is a lot of money, the whole collection of games of a dude is a lot of money, things sould be more logical.

  49. dr.castle says:

    For those wondering why some gamers who adopted Steam without complaint years ago are now resisting Origin–here you go. Putting that kind of trust in EA makes me pretty uncomfortable.

  50. d34thly says:

    @JKjoker

    Steam does not “do a similar thing” period. Steam has never banned anybody from merely joining a server. Whenever I have even seen a gray area/game glitch in certain games (Modern Warfare 2) Steam gives its update news pop-up to rightfully inform you that there will be an action based ban for said glitches before you even start playing your game. Furthermore, Steam bans are righteous in that, as far as I know, it is impossible to get banned from a multiplayer component of a game without knowingly and wittingly doing the things you know will get you banned.

    I don’t think there is such thing as a “Steam ban”. There is however a game ban on Steam when u cheat so get it straight losers talking out your cornhole.