Electronic Arts seems to be in complete damage control mode. The company has backtracked on its earlier statement of implementing micro-transactions in all future games. According to Gamasutra, EA CFO Blake Jorgensen has now said that the statement was “really not true.”
“I made a statement in the conference along the lines of 'We'll have micro-transactions in our games' and the community read that to mean all our games, and that's really not true,” Jorgensen said at the Wedbush Technology Conference. “All of our mobile games will have micro-transactions in them, because almost all of them are going to a world where they are play-for-free.”
He claimed that console and PC games were separate. “You are going to see extensions off of products like Battlefield Premium, which are simply not micro-transactions,” he said. “They are premium services, or additional add-on products or downloads that we're doing… it is essentially an extension of the gameplay that allows someone to take a game that they might have played for a thousand hours, and play it for two thousand hours. We want to ensure that consumers are getting value.”
Real Racing 3 is plagued with micro-transactions
However, it should be noted that micro-transaction systems are already present in Dead Space 3 and in the multiplayer mode of Mass Effect 3. Jorgensen seems to be contradicting himself at this point, as he clearly stated in February that micro-transactions will be present in “all” future EA games. “We're building into all of our games the ability to pay for things along the way, either to get to a higher level to buy a new character, to buy a truck, a gun, whatever it might be.” He continued, “Consumers are enjoying and embracing that way of the business,” he had said.
Clearly, EA seems to be going the path of the typical politician with its statements and backtracking. Micro-transactions could be problematic as the company may start making games pointlessly more difficult just to push consumers to buy stuff. While this issue isn't found in Dead Space 3, a cynical person could say that it's only a matter of time before we're forced to buy a gun in a game because unlocking it takes an impractical amount of time.
Dead Space 3 was the first game in the Dead Space series to feature a micro-transaction system. Another candidate for micro-transactions that EA managed was the multiplayer component of last year’s Mass Effect 3. The game featured micro-transactions to buy trading card-styled “booster packs” of randomised weapons, abilities and power-ups.
Dead Space 3's was revealed to have a micro-transaction system back in January, just a few days before it was released. This was a very slippery slope for EA to walk, as the game is based on surviving with the resources you can find and having these resources available at the touch of a button could potentially take away from the atmosphere of the game.
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