EA reveals new Fight Night, Online Pass requirement for Madden, EA MMA

COO's comment all but confirms unnamed fighting game will be new entry in boxing series--which will need new-game pack-in code along with NHL, NCAA Football for online play.

Yesterday's earnings report from Electronic Arts revealed that the publisher lost $677 million during its last year, even though Battlefield: Bad Company 2 sold 5 million copies. It also made public that FIFA 10, Madden NFL 10, The Sims 3, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and Need for Speed: Shift have all sold in excess of 4 million units, with Mass Effect 2 selling 1.6 million units in North America and Europe. About 1 million units of Dante's Inferno and Army of Two: The 40th Day have been bought worldwide.

Much like the real-life Manny Pacquiao, the Fight Night series cannot be stopped.

After the report, EA executives held a conference call with analysts in which they divulged several more details. Fans of the Fight Night series will welcome COO John Schappert's apparently accidental confirmation that a new installment in the boxing franchise is on the way. The title is likely the "Fighting Title TBA" listed on EA's release schedule as coming to consoles and "handheld/mobile" in the first quarter of 2011.

Less welcome to buyers of used games was Schappert's explicit confirmation that the new title--along with every other major EA Sports game--will require the just-announced Online Pass to play on Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network. "EA Sports titles including Tiger Woods PGA Tour, NCAA Football, Madden NFL, NHL, Fight Night, and MMA--Mixed Martial Arts--will feature Online Pass," the executive told analysts.

Though the only game named in Monday's announcement of Online Pass was Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11, EA said that it would be required for all forthcoming sports games. The pass will be packed in to every new copy of the aforementioned EA Sports titles in the form of a one-time, game-specific code that must be redeemed to unlock all online modes. Renters and used-game buyers can try the online mode for free for seven days but then must pay $10 for a new code for continued access.

For more on the latest installment in the Fight Night series, last year's Fight Night Round 4, check out GameSpot's video review below.

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258 comments
needsnointro
needsnointro

I pay for Xbox Live to play online. This defeats the purpose. Not cool.

ManOnMars5
ManOnMars5

I love EA games a lot but i mean come on be reasonable please.

fuhque
fuhque

I could understand if EA did it to the PS3 because the playstaion network is free but why for the xbox 360? Some of us have the one year subscription but what about the ones tha pay $8 a month. EA....this is BS!

DarthSuk
DarthSuk

dear e.a. i am glad you are making a new fightnight, but will you please put in jack dempsey, rocky marcaino and the klitschkos this tjme and most of all the button controls that is the only reason why me in all my friends bought round 4 is because you put the button patch on and the klitschkos . but that should have all ready been on there , jack dempsey and rocky m. are two of the greatest heavy weights there is please put them on there. and a better button control and it needs more facial damage the front of the face never gets damaged and other options like an atomatic get up after you get knocked down i am speaking on behafe of every body i know that will buy this game thank you e.a.

BKbroilerXC
BKbroilerXC

EA I love your games, but you've really hurt a loyal customer with this "Online-Pass" crap. I usually buy these games new anyway but thats a low blow. Leave the used games buyers alone. You get enough money.

garcia_jx
garcia_jx

why pay extra for a feature that should be already included in a game?

dark_rising76
dark_rising76

I didn't even bother getting Madden 10 last year because it wasn't any much different from the previous game. From the looks of it, I'll probably will do the same thing this year as well as Tiger Woods 11. The only EA game besides FIFA 10 that I will buy this year is NCAA Football 11 because at least on that game there will be a substantial amount of changes from last year. I just don't understand why EA can't just do a yearly DLC of the roster and a few other items and just come out with a sport game every other year. Maybe it's because they don't want to lose profit doing that way but they're not helping gamers buy Madden or NBA every single year without in-depth improvements. The online pass doesn't bother me because I don't play sport games on Xbox Live but if I did I would be pretty pissed off right now like many others. And since Ubisoft is planning to do the same thing, many other companies will start thinking it's a great idea to milk more money from players . Heck, we already have to pay close to $10 minimum just to access Xbox Live and then turn around and pay another $5-$10 to play online.

njm1314
njm1314

As if I needed another reason not to buy the same games every year.

anthonycg
anthonycg

You want to make money EA? Change something other than the graphics. Or make Mirror's Edge 2.

LordIllQuill
LordIllQuill

I'm proud of the backlash I'm seeing from the commenters on this site and truly hope you all put your money where your mouths are and boycott EA games. Because Fight Night IV didn't do as well as they'd hoped, they want to pad their profits by making gamers pay extra to play online if they happen to buy used or rent games. Since most used games are about $5 less than new, that means it'll be cheaper to buy a game new, which will cut into Gamestop's and Blockbuster's profitability. This is pretty much a bait and switch tactic -- get gamers hooked to your online games, then charge them for it! EA, if you want people to buy games as soon as they come out, try this tactic: make better games! This whole idea of corporations gouging people during economic hardship sickens me.

Arclight_Blue
Arclight_Blue

Thank you EA....... thank you for convincing me NOT to buy your products namely, EA MMA and NBA Live(it may not be included in the list but it most certainly will)

willrash
willrash

ubisoft said it was going to do the same as EA on ign.com if we let EA get away with it they will all start to do it to that is pure greedy in my book think when you buy a used car you dont have to pay a 100$ more for the wheels

calm_syrface
calm_syrface

im wit hockeyguy EA blows! NBA Live is complete garbage, these Street games are puerile at best and you know what I really don't like...MADDEN! EA are the biggest haters in the whole video game industry including Activision for buying the NFL license. i'll be renting your games from now on

hockeyguy6759
hockeyguy6759

EA blows....NHL 94 will be the only game i ever thank them for....the sooner people realize they have quit caring about the consumer and only care about their profits the sooner we can have quality games once again. Im ready for Backbreaker, Id rather make 32 fake teams then have to put up with EA's bullsh*t for one more year

neonfrax2
neonfrax2

If EA is entitled to getting paid for offering online services (online lobbies, leaderboards, etc.) for their games, and they have been charging us that $10 "extra" for those features in previous games, it seems logical that new games with the "online pass unlock" feature should be $10 cheaper.

neonfrax2
neonfrax2

Let me say, I've already experienced this crap in the latest EA Skate game; it sucks. The game is constantly offering features that are only available in online mode with an unlock code. The game was clearly developed with online in mind (uploading your own video files and skate team logo, etc.) and even after entering the unlock code from the rental's packaging, I continued to get prompting to add MORE features by purchasing additional unlock codes (special lens filters for my videos, etc.). I thought the company had it right with Dragon Age & Sims 3 by offering codes in new games that unlocked rewards that would be paid add-on content 30 days after launch. Seeing the occasional prompt to pay more in a game was a mild annoyance, but being refused multiple game features (basic game features) until purchasing further game unlocks is ridiculous. EA if you need more money, release more quality game titles, not crappy "summer blockbuster type" rehashes of previous sellers.

hubbybubby70
hubbybubby70

I won't be buying crysis 2 ,because EA will make sure it's 20% single player and 80% online, which means second hand value will be worth nothing if they go through with this pass crap.

hubbybubby70
hubbybubby70

If the game was worth buying in the first place, i would keep the copy, if i payed £40 for a game and it was a peace of Gordan Brown i would want to trade it for a better game, if they do away with trading in games, i would be buying only a quarter of the games than i do now. Some titles out there need to go straight to the bin and not rob us of our hard earned cash.

method115
method115

Not that there was much of a chance.

method115
method115

This ruins any chance of me getting the MMA game.

SIDEFX1
SIDEFX1

Farout EA, How greedy can you get.. It's like a cult in the video game world.. We need more sports game developers than just EA.. They got what for example, The nascar license and they are doing nothing with it.. Give it to someone else then.. An Online pass.. Stupid really..

Patrickstar1986
Patrickstar1986

HAHAHAHA. I'm glad I never got attached to playing my sports titles online. Honestly I'm not sure if EA understands not everyone cares about updated rosters and one or two additions to an old engine. Chances may be that the titles with that service may actually drop in price faster if customers understand how EA is going to do things. Hey if that makes my copy of Tiger drop to 20 bucks within a couple months rather than a couple more than a couple months I don't mind. Other than that... I don't think I would buy any other EA sports title but FIFA or NCAAF. It's just not worth that much money to me.

Sol-leks731
Sol-leks731

just buy the game new and quit your l3itching

COPMAN221
COPMAN221

tsiper wrote "I have a PS3 also but the PSN is nowhere near what XBL is and never will be!" I beg to differ with your comment. Try playing games that are on both platforms and the only difference is that you're paying on the 360. Anyway with that said let us return to bashing EA and their greedy ways!

COPMAN221
COPMAN221

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

WickedNick
WickedNick

Why stop at online services? EA can control the single player experience too. Why not have the new games that you "buy" come with an unlock code for the full version of the game. Then second hand users, or renters, can enjoy a 7-day full trial before paying for their own product unlock code.

tsiper
tsiper

Just another reason why EA SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IDIOTS! Yet another reason why I miss the old 2K sports football. I hate EA and refuse to play their sports games, This new pay to play only cement's that!!!! I really really wish 2K sports could make a NFL football game again!!!! Atleast their Baseball is wicked awesome!!! I have no problem paying for XBL because it awesome and really offer's a service that is unparralled. I have a PS3 also but the PSN is nowhere near what XBL is and never will be! But having to pay extra to play online for used EA titles is Excrusiatingly Annoying!!!!!!!!

Ohaidere
Ohaidere

Online pass is a fail idea. Good thing I don't play sports games.

maesterangelo
maesterangelo

I dont mind payin ms for xbox live, its the price we pay for a good online service but ea does NOTHING to make my online play any better. Even though im sure they use their own servers cause alot of people play their games its still bullsh*t, make better games to cover the loss, they never had this problem before...

Panic_Jester
Panic_Jester

so if they still lose money after this are they gonna charge us more?

A_Falcies_Fancy
A_Falcies_Fancy

legitimate question: does EA host the servers for its sports games? because if not then this is really, really, really, really f'd up.

xchiefmegadethx
xchiefmegadethx

this online pass crap...just made sure i never buy Madden ever again...I havent bought a madden in about 5 years but always wanted to try?but now NO WAY!!!!

TimmyNude
TimmyNude

I think that's ridiculous trying to profit off of their used games, that's terrible. I'm glad Sony and Nintendo have kept some integrity and aren't trying to charge people to play games online.

asmodeus_z
asmodeus_z

Vote with ur wallet and boycott EA sports games!

wolfgang_amon
wolfgang_amon

Damn so now you have to pay MS & EA just to play online, wtf! These companies really don't surprise me anymore though, the idiots that hand over the money do. @ BladedNuiasnce how many others do you think are using the same reasoning? "I'm going to buy only this EA game and not the rest!" That's not really boycotting. A lot more people than you think are thinking similarly not realizing that they all add up to the total.

SteelCzar
SteelCzar

@criegz too right mate theyll probably wave it in IW's face

criegz
criegz

I can think of one place where EA can shove that money.

DaRk_NiTeMaRe
DaRk_NiTeMaRe

I understand that EA lost money, but this is just atrocious. XBL users already pay for online play from the greedy Microsoft, and now EA is adding $10 for every used game from them? It's like you're paying for online multiplayer as if it was DLC. That's just sad, EA, how low can you get?

grungeman91
grungeman91

This is an abomination to online gaming.

AceCometh
AceCometh

EA is really scraping the bowls of suck-titude by releasing another years edition of the same old garbage. Give me something new. Give me innovation! All I'll get though, are rows upon rows of games I'll once again pass up. And the fact that EA bought BioWare makes me want to cry. They gave me something new. They gave me innovation! Now all they'll probably give me is sequel-itis. I hope that doesn't end up being the case.

Philly04
Philly04

Yes this is assault on the retailer and EA is drawing the line right on our backs. Prediction for this years lost... $1.3 billion.

-Saigo-
-Saigo-

So so sick of EA's money grubbing ways...

mvegas
mvegas

Once this is implemented, is there something Gamestop/Gamefly or the average consumer could sue EA for? Boycotting can only go so far when they hold a monopoly over NFL games because the fans will still buy. If this comes to pass, the gaming industry will continue to degrade and the only thing we'll be left with is shovelware with multiple online fees. It's bad enough most people pay outrageous prices for internet access.

Kayweg
Kayweg

Electronic Arrogance...."It's in the game"

BladedNuiasnce
BladedNuiasnce

will buy EA MMA new, after that Im boycotting EA... untill the next MMA release, then Ill boycott again... I buy lots of games from EA, losing me alone is a loss of over $300, hope others will show their disgust, & put these fools out of business!

BladedNuiasnce
BladedNuiasnce

this whole Online Pass thing is BS! thats all I have to say!

MarcJL31
MarcJL31

One question I have is if companies hate the used game industry so much and it hurts their profit, why is there so much exclusive content for those who preorder at Gamestop? I mean you kinda shoot yourself in the foot there seeing as most people who preorder there usually tade in some games to help out the cost, meaning for games for Gamestop to re-sell. That makes no sense at all to me.