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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.
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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