EA giving free PC game to anyone who bought SimCity

Maxis boss Lucy Bradshaw addresses server woes, promises free game for those with activated copy of game by March 18.

All gamers who purchased a copy of SimCity will receive a free digital PC title, Electronic Arts announced tonight. Those with an activated copy of SimCity by March 18 are eligible for the free game.

No further details on this promotion were divulged.

Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw announced the news tonight as part of a blog post addressing the SimCity server woes and how the company plans to get back on track.

Bradshaw's entire blog post is below.

"Here’s a quick update on the problems we were experiencing with SimCity--and a little something extra for people who bought the game.

The server issues which began at launch have improved significantly as we added more capacity. But some people are still experiencing response and stability problems that we’re working fast to address.

So what went wrong? The short answer is: a lot more people logged on than we expected. More people played and played in ways we never saw in the beta.

OK, we agree, that was dumb, but we are committed to fixing it. In the last 48 hours we increased server capacity by 120 percent. It’s working--the number of people who have gotten in and built cities has improved dramatically. The number of disrupted experiences has dropped by roughly 80 percent.

So we’re close to fixed, but not quite there. I’m hoping to post another update this weekend to let everyone know that the launch issues are behind us.

Something Special for Your Trouble

The good news is that SimCity is a solid hit in all major markets. The consensus among critics and players is that this is fundamentally a great game. But this SimCity is made to be played online, and if you can’t get a stable connection, you’re NOT having a good experience. So we’re not going to rest until we’ve fixed the remaining server issues.

And to get us back in your good graces, we’re going to offer you a free PC download game from the EA portfolio. On March 18, SimCity players who have activated their game will receive an email telling them how to redeem their free game.

I know that’s a little contrived--kind of like buying a present for a friend after you did something crummy. But we feel bad about what happened. We’re hoping you won’t stay mad and that we’ll be friends again when SimCity is running at 100 percent.

SimCity is a GREAT game and the people who made it are incredibly proud. Hang in there--we’ll be providing more updates throughout the weekend.

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Discussion

812 comments
asjflask
asjflask

Primary reason to boycott EA.   I've been saying that since Mass Effect 3 and will continue to do so now and in the future...

zenstrata
zenstrata

How about giving us a purely offline mode instead?  I'm sorry but I do not accept SimCity which is online only.

megakick
megakick

I would rather have the game I bought fixed then a free game that doesn't cost EA anything. Same BS Sony pulled cheaper to give out games then to fix the real problem.

xMAGOGxKruelgor
xMAGOGxKruelgor

The tiny map sizes is the main thing I hate about this game.  So much for creating that gargantuan dream city.  You'll have a 2km x 2km town that will blossom into a map of skyscrapers with no suburbs.  Retarded.

dinmoor
dinmoor

I'm so disappointed about this game.. Its a freaking beta they have sold us. Just like everything else from EA. They sold the game very good in all the videos before release. But its just bullshit. Its completely full off bugs and the building area is just pathetically small.. 

 At least i again know. Never fall for an EA trap.. They can't produce working games. Im so glad that i have downloaded so many of there games and not paid for them. i trey them and they always sux even they make them look so good. Only game i could pay for would be batman. Thats epic. But EA owes me for crapgames like BF3 and there shit server system and load time.. EA u SUX!! 

jthotty
jthotty

How bout you keep the crummy game and make the maps bigger! YAY! EVERYONES HAPPY!

Chaloner11
Chaloner11

I rather have my money back. The maps are freakin TINY!

rocketsatdawn
rocketsatdawn

I really like the game. Yes I've been frustrated with the connection issues but I've put a lot of hours in with a couple mates of mine and I’m addicted. I don't really want another game, but I’d love it if they gave the British, German and French city sets to those that want them instead. If it is just a choice of games let’s hope they’re good ones as to not add insult to injury or they had better get ready for the shit storm that would follow.

axelx666
axelx666

this is a ploy to benefit THEM not US.

johnlyw
johnlyw

Still not buying till DRM is removed...=)

HSV002
HSV002

Yeah i really wanted a copy of fifa 11 thanks EA.....

bloody-hell
bloody-hell

Offering a free game of choice (one of the cheap and crappy ones) on the same disfunctional and disliked platform, suffering the same restrictions (Origin) is pretty much adding insult to injury.

What they should do is offer 100% refunds for all affected customers, perhaps even paying the customer damage compensation for them not being able to offer the expected experience.

If EA insists to demand a permanent connection to their servers in order for people to use the product they buy, there should be a QoS policy to protect the customer, so every time they (EA) fuck something up on their end and the product is not usable, they will be required to pay the customers compensation fees.

Jennaralize
Jennaralize

Ahhhh SimShitty :-) 

Purchasers, please continue to rage on for our amusement, great fun!

Slade968
Slade968

You know how much respect I would gain for EA if they offered full refunds and a public apology for this appalling oversight. But, as is typical, they offer to band-aid the problem with free shit that doesn't at all compensate the buyer.

EA, you're doing it wrong.

axelx666
axelx666

PEOPLE!!! the free game is going to be crap, don't waste $70 on an ALREADY crap game just to get another free CRAPPY GAME.

DON'T TAKE THE BAIT, DOWN WITH EA!!

fanirama
fanirama

 Gamers: Maxis/EA sucks. Simcity is horrible. Never again an online only game... ever!


EA/Maxis : Look here. What do I have? Free online-only crippled another game that will last you 6months before we shut off those servers suckas.


Gamers: Ooooh! Shiny....I want it.  *forgets everything*

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

There's an easy fix, but EA's either too afraid or too stupid to actually do it, I'm not sure which. Anyway, if they remove the "must be online requirement" of the game and only use it for the pointless little stuff, they could handle this problem easily.

Hardstyler2012
Hardstyler2012

would be funny if they are giving away copies of sim city 4

vault-boy
vault-boy

"If a game demands it be online solely for its benefit it should damn well fucking always be online for ours. Anything less than the demand for total connection is the behavior of a loyal dog, whimpering pathetically at the feet of an abusive owner.... [and] if we are dogs, we are those ones who take so much, only accept the torment to a point. We are the dogs who only need one slap to many before we bite, suddenly and sharply as the market proved in the 80's. And this, too, is something I think EA knows. If they didn't know that they wouldn't continue doing this like this. It wouldn't try to assert authority, control, dominance over you, the costumer, long after you've done your business. EA is afraid of you, and one day you will justify that fear." - Jim Sterling


This is pretty much a great way to sum up EA's future. I am just waiting for them, along with Activision and if they don't get there shit together (which they have been attempting to) Ubisoft, to crash and for us to finally learn from our mistakes. EA can't just give out some shitty 4 year old title to everyone they fucked over and think its gonna be OK. They know damn well going into this that their servers were going to crash. We all did. Every gamer and every corporation knew that EA's servers were going to fuck the game up but EA still released the game anyways. So, if you release a broken product and charge $60 bucks for it, that is theft which means, at this point, I don't condemn anyone who pirates games from EA. I'm not saying you should, I'm not saying I do. I am simply stating if someone told me they pirated a copy of a game made by EA I wouldn't look down on them in the slightest. I see no fault in stealing from thieves. 

GareauRA
GareauRA

Slap EA in the face. Support your INDIE developers. Some of the games coming out of these indie game studios are amazing, polished, and worth every penny. Other's, not so much, but you can decide. When Maxis turned to EA I lost their respect. They make great games, but have to answer to big brother. Independent develpers struggle to make games that will stick to the game market valcro. They have vested intrests in ensuring its a gem. EA... well like all greedy conglomerates, they just expect that we'll take their garbage and move along to their next crap release. Simcity is fun. But not worth all the BS that EA attaches to it.

WayneSikes49
WayneSikes49

Lemme guess.... Diablo 3 or some other DRM crippled title? And why not just give you your money back like most respectable retailers do? Again, EA is minimizing their loss with this game. The fair thing would be to return your money. But it's easier and less impact on the bottom line to just give you a game they're probably not making much more on anyway... You notice how quickly EA changed their return policy. At first they offered to return money to anyone who wasn't satisfied and over the course of a few days after launch they completely changed it to 'read the return policy'. They want to force us to hold onto our copies until they finally (if ever) get the game totally fixed and then hope we'll THEN play it enough to like it and not want our money back. It's like buying a car that won't run and the dealer says, "Just hold onto it for a couple months and see if you change your mind" instead of returning your money... Wouldn't you think that was ridiculous and warranted a lawsuit?

torres_unix
torres_unix

I'm turning in my SimCity for Bioshock Infinite.

trdrstv
trdrstv

Is the Game SimCity 3000 by any chance ?

gatsbythepig
gatsbythepig

A free game.  Maybe I'll buy SimCity after all.  The game will work, eventually and until that happens, I'll play the free game.

MegaPhilX2
MegaPhilX2

Yay! a FREE game we don't own! Free stuff fixes everything! So, has anyone working at MAxis and EA finally made a pst-mortem meeting discussing the HORRIBLE decisions and learned from their mistakes yet? Somehow I doubt it...

MamaMiia
MamaMiia

I might buy the new SimCity but only if they remove the always-online requirement, add multiple local saves, and have larger cities without paying for additional content.  None of those features means NO BUY for me.

urtin3
urtin3

Just keep the goddamn WarZ by yourself, EA.

Wish01
Wish01

Probably giving off the so called free game "Real Racing 3" for Iphone as a "gift" for those who bought Simcity so that we can spend $80 or more to unlock cars, tracks and not spent hours on repairing cars after races by paying up.

ZoTrAcK
ZoTrAcK

not a chance that they give you one or two free DLC for the game...

thomaselderton
thomaselderton

They can keep the free game. EA must give my a pack of cigarettes instead... Because I always like a smoke after I've been f*cked!

tigertaru
tigertaru

Purchasers of SimCity will have a choice of several EA games for free which will include: Madden 2010, Madden 2011, or Madden 2012.  To satisfy customers further, online DRM will not be an issue with these free game options since the servers were turned off five minutes after the games were originally released anyway. 

yeebsey
yeebsey

i bought simcity 4 on steam at christmas for £1.50

all the simcity i need

talshiarr
talshiarr

Larger city size? $19.99 please. Traffic that intelligently chooses a route? $19.99 please. Subways and other transportation that was in SC4? $19.99 please. Additional landmarks or building sets? $19.99 please. Weather? $19.99 please. Sims 3/4/? integration? $19.99 please.

yearssomuch
yearssomuch

What, another DRM-locked, mediocre product from EA? Yeah, no thanks.

Phakt
Phakt

@HAZCHEM88 All the hype that money can buy.  They made their money back and then some in pre-sales. Mission accomplished.

Phakt
Phakt

@jthotty Ever try Cities XL? blows the new Sim City out of the water.

xMAGOGxKruelgor
xMAGOGxKruelgor

@axelx666 Of course, they're receiving so many refund requests that their way of skating around that is to give people a free game.

axelx666
axelx666

@HSV002 fifa 11 is too good for EA..you'll probably get anywhere from '09-'01

TigusVidiks
TigusVidiks

@bloody-hell Agree completly. But who would write and enforce that QoS?  

I don't expect them to do it themselves. That would limit their ability of tricking people into buying things that don't work, without danger of being asked for the money back... which is what they have now, with the terms of use they make everyone agree with.

GareauRA
GareauRA

@Jennaralize While the servers are/were offline I do find great enjoyment in reading all the rage. It's 1/2 the fun of owning simcity!

Phakt
Phakt

@Jinzo_111887 No, they would have to have a "no boundaries" mode to make sprawling cities and fix the AI. Then I may be happy. 

axelx666
axelx666

@gatsbythepig 

the game is gonna be a CHEAP  $10-$20 game from 10 years ago that's by some company you never even heard of..it's not worth it man.