Posts Tagged ‘Origin’

Your Move, Steam: Origin Offers Full Refunds

Well now, here is something. If you go through every article we’ve ever written about EA’s Origin service (because what else do you have to do on a beautiful, possibility-packed, er, Tuesday), you’ll find that we’ve basically just written a series of pleas. “Come on, EA. Just do something – anything – worthwhile, interesting, or different with your proprietary ball-and-chain,” our posts may as well read. But now, finally, they kinda have. I guess. If you decide you’re not a fan of your purchase within 24 hours, you can simply toss it back into the sea of weird flame wheel logo things from whence it was birthed.

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EA ‘Confident’ Origin Issues Won’t Plague Euro SimCity

I like it when publishers provide screenshots that metaphorically illustrate their current situations damn near flawlessly.

In the words of RPS’ totally unneeded, never sighted on a semi-regular basis error screen, SimCity’s having a bit of a wobbly. Some people, however, haven’t even been lucky enough to get into its now-infamous queues – let alone experience the majesty of realizing they might eventually get to play the videogame they purchased. So then, is this a preview of the hoops Europe gets to squeeze its oh-so-sensual landmasses through on Thursday? EA’s claiming it’s mobilized its force of spline reticulating drones to make sure everything’s shipshape, but obviously, there’s still plenty of reason for skepticism.

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Lakes Boil: Ubisoft And EA To Sell Each Others Games

Everything is topsy-turvy. Up is left, down is blue. Ubisoft have just announced that they’re to start selling third-party games on their online store, Uplay. (Which could mark the first time anyone has ever looked at the online store, Uplay.) And even more peculiar, they’re also going to start selling their own games via EA’s Origin download service. Do words and numbers even have meaning any more?

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Play4Free Is No More: EA Debuts Origin Free To Play

If you have anything even vaguely resembling a working knowledge of the English language, you’ll probably agree that Play4Free – EA’s diabolical label for its gaggle of free-to-play offerings – was painful, difficult to look upon, and probably responsible for the deaths of millions. But now, on this happiest of days, EA’s kicking it to the curb in favor of Origin Free to Play, a long-overdue reorganization under the service’s woefully anemic (though largely harmless) umbrella.

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Origin Accounts Hacked – Maybe Change Your Password

Who knew this crappy photoshop would come in handy again?

Uh-oh. Eurogamer are reporting that a number of people have woken up this morning to find that their EA Origin account has been hacked. Receiving emails telling them that changes have successfully been made, recipients are not too delighted since they never asked for any. And then of course getting control of their accounts back again is a great big palava. It’s even happened to one of Eurogamer’s own.

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EA’s Origin Leaves The Doors Unlocked, Looting Ensues

Taking stuff makes expensive things free!

As spotted by Kotaku, this weekend EA’s Origin had a sudden burst of not quite intentional generosity. As a thank you for completing a survey, a few customers were sent a voucher for $20 for the digital store, allowing them to download a free game. Except, well, EA forgot to make that code a one-time only thing. Can you guess what happened next?

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Et Tu, Uplay? – Ubisoft Relaunches Its PC Store

The digital distribution plot thickens. In the beginning, there was Steam, and it was… not great. But it slowly trended upward in its tiny virtual vacuum until it expanded into the empire we all know and mostly love today. And people noticed. So along came Origin, with its EA stamp of approval and not much else – though slow progress has seen it take a few steps in the right direction. And now, surprisingly but also not surprisingly at all, Ubisoft’s clambering into the ring alongside those two heavyweights with an extensive relaunch/rebrand of its Ubistore as Uplay PC. Though the Assassin’s Creed publisher probably should’ve picked a different name while they were at it, given the negative assocations UPlay could be said to have for some folk.
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Errrr: Origin’s “Landmark” 9.0 Update

My main complaint: Why hasn't EA changed the storefront's name to 'Storogin'? I mean, aside from the fact that it's a hideous monstrosity of a made-up word.

Let me begin this by noting that, in actuality, EA’s at least been paying solid attention to Origin lately. Lending a helping hand to crowd-funded games taking their wobbly first steps was a smart idea, and putting out a big call for input from users is a much appreciated gesture – assuming, of course, that EA actually takes resulting criticisms to heart. That said, Origin 9.0 – a self-described “landmark update” – isn’t exactly encouraging. Once it rolls out, you’ll gain access to a free-floating friends list, re-sizable game icons, and, er, a clock.

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Crikey: EU Rules You Can Resell Downloaded Games

This could get interesting.

Well here’s some pretty huge news. The Court Of Justice of the European Union has just ruled that people should be able to resell downloaded games. In an environment where publishers are trying to destroy basic consumer rights like the ability to resell physical products you’ve paid for, this could be one heck of a turnaround for customers. And that’s no matter what it might say in the EULAs. This could have absolutely enormous implications on how services like Steam, Origin, GamersGate and the like work, and finally restore some rights back to the gamer.

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Origin Offering Deep Discounts On Many Games… Er?

Well this is mighty confusing.

So figure this one out. You may remember that twelve days ago, there was quite a lot of discussion over EA’s Origin store boss saying they wouldn’t be engaging in “deep discount” sales on their Steam-rivalling service. David DeMartini (whose name sounds like he should be the star of a Bond spoof) said, “We won’t be doing that,” when asked about such services. Explaining why he added, “I just think it cheapens your intellectual property.”

Today on Origin, Dragon Age: Origins is available for £5. That’s discounted from £40 – an incredible 87.5% off!

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Hmm: EA On Steam/Origin Mega-Sales

I wasn't sure how to illustrate this piece, so here are some puppies in a box. Aww.

Having been doing an awful lot of dev interviews for this site and others over the last couple of years, I’ve become increasingly wary of the out of context quote. Not because I believe they’re inaccurate (at least, not usually), because if you say something you should damn well be prepared to stand by it, but because picking out key words or phrases creates a wholly new context. That is, a man stands on top of a building with a megaphone and unexpectedly bellows a forceful proclamation at the world. That’s never how it happens, even in those rare interviews where the subject goes into it with an intention to push a specific agenda. While their opinions are their opinions, the contentious statements that become headlines almost always form part of a larger, calmer conversation where they’re led onto certain topics.

Hence, EA’s Origin boss David DeMartini saying Steam’s mega-sales “cheapen intellectual property” did not involve DeMartini leaning in close to the journalist at GamesIndustry International, raising a clenched fist with fire in his eyes, spittle on his lips and an expression which suggested he hoped everyone at Valve would spontaneously combust. Instead, as you can see if take the time to read the full interview rather than have an immediate reaction to that quote on its own, he offered a considered answer in response to a very specific question, which was itself part of a wider-ranging chat.
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Origin Sets Up Stall For Crowd-Funded Games

EA understand indie games, they really do, that’s why they have their very own indie bundle. They also understand crowd-funding, or at least they understand that it’s becoming a force that they must reckon with, one way or another. This could go one of two ways. Either Kickstarter HQ is about to be breached by corporate assault drones, or all the profits from FIFA 13 will be pledged to the Kick it Forward scheme. Or perhaps there is a third way. Perhaps EA will waive its cut of sales on Origin for 90 days if the game in question was crowd-funded.

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EA Wants To Know What You Think About Origin

'Really? An O for our logo? How cliche is that? Add spikes!'

I held out on using Origin until Mass Effect 3. I was immediately struck by the fact that there were precisely two tabs: “my games” and, of course, “store.” Even more striking, however, was the fact that EA’s little wallet-ruffling engine that could, well, couldn’t. Each time I tried to purchase ME3, I got booted by an incredibly vague error message. Eventually, I let out a quiet scream of resignation, left my house, and went on the prowl for reporters to punch. Then I realized I could just send a few of my own teeth flying, which really didn’t end up helping anything. So yes, my experiences with Origin haven’t exactly yielded sunshine, rainbows, or cheap dental bills. Are you in the same boat, or at least a nearby flotilla? Well then, slight consolation: after letting you languish for ages in life’s ancient-magazine-packed waiting room, EA’s finally calling you to the front desk.

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Ban-Ish: EA Games Now Playable Offline When Banned

The bans still exist, but at least you can play your games.

So this is interesting. After we’ve hounded EA for over a year about their bans preventing players from accessing single-player games, and after a year of receiving peculiarly ambiguous statements, and promises to fix things in time periods that now gather dust, EA has finally (a full year since we first raised the issue with them) partly fixed this issue. Partly. Being banned multiplayer violations will no longer lock you out of your single-player games, and their DLC. Because, it seems, they’ve fixed their Offline mode. But there’s no word on whether forum violations can still affect gaming access.

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The Witcher II To Land On Origin

One of these is Origin, another Steam. LOL!
I’m fairly ignorant of what’s on EA’s Origin, which I currently think of as a Battlefield 3 launcher. But even I can’t wilfully avoid the news of more new publishers dropping games onto the digital distribution service. Not when it’s the likes of Paradox, Trion Worlds, and CD Projekt.
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Battlefield 3 Physical Warfare Is Non-Physical


Because it’s a download. I mean I guess maybe that is still physical in some sense. It is a configuration of atoms on hard-drives… This is a rubbish line of thinking. Look over there, a free thing! It’s out and free, says Battlefieldblog. It’s new guns, as trailered below. So are you Battlefield 3 purchasers still playing Battlefield 3? Or has the lustre worn off?
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EA’s Unwieldy Banhammer: EA Responds

YOU ARE BANNED FOR LOOKING AT THIS IMAGE

For the last week I’ve been sending quite a few emails to various people within EA, trying to get to the bottom of why gamers receiving forum bans are finding they do not have access to their Origin online gaming. My goal has been to get a clear understanding of their current policy on the matter, since the company’s actions don’t appear to match the statements made in 2008, and March this year. On both occasions they have made it clear that forum bans should not affect access to games, and yet it’s quite obvious that’s not the case. So what is going on? We’re getting closer to understanding. While we’ve still no clear idea what their current policy actually is, EA have promised me that they are “planning a policy update which will include more equitable rules”, with a view to having “the time fit the crime.”

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Burnout Paradise For No-Pennies

Cars wot go free

Edit: Still working after all! But you have to ‘buy’ it and apply the code via the Origin client, not the website. UK only, by the sounds of things.

Me: Fancy a free download copy of the pretty good Burnout Paradise?
You: Ooh, yes please. You’re so good to me, Alec. I think I might love you.
Me: OK. first you’ll need to install EA’s controversial Origin…
You: WHAT NO, NO I’M NOT GOING TO DO THAT NO NOT FOR ANYTHING I’D RATHER EAT MY OWN NOSTRIL HAIR. And I defiitely don’t love you anymore.
Me: Well, whatever. My cat loves me, so I’ll be alright. Anyway, then add Burnout Paradise to your basket from the Origin store, and enter PARADISE at checkout to remove all cost from it. Yes, in capitals.
You: OK, I might do that, but if you tell anyone I installed Origin to get my hands on a freebie even though I’ve spent the last month loudly saying I would not, I’m going to kill your cat.
Me: Deal. Oh yeah, and this probably won’t last long, so get a move on, right? And stay the hell away from my cat, you bastard.

Via HotUKDeals via PCG.

German Origin Furore And EA Denial

Corporate logos are the greatest!
EA’s Origin service has come under unusual pressure in Germany after a number of (unconfirmed, as far as I can tell) analyses seemed to show the program accessing data used by external programs. Additionally, German newspaper the Spiegel caused particular consternation by running an article suggesting that the licence agreement that came with the service might not hold up under German law. The situation has become so fraught that German retailers have taken the unusual step of offering to refund Battlefield 3, even after redemption of keys and registration with EA. Eurogamer report that EA Germany issued this statement yesterday:

“We have updated the End User License Agreement of Origin, in the interests of our players to create more clarity. Origin is not spyware. Neither do we use nor install spyware on the PCs of users.”

Expansive: Origin Signs Major Publishers

It's a logo. Exciting, I know.

Electronic Arts’ digital storefront is expanding next month, with the news that Warner Bros., THQ and Capcom will begin offering some of their releases through Origin. Batman: Arkham City and Saints Row: The Third are the only games mentioned by name but more will be available and “additional titles” are promised in the coming months. Both of those games will still be available elsewhere so this is a case of choice rather than exclusivity. Maybe it will lead to discount wars, maybe it’ll lead to people shrugging and continuing to purchase games from their preferred distributor, but it does feel like a significant step for Origin. The future looks increasingly competitive. EA-speak below.

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