A story about my recent experience with EA.

Excuse me while I vent a little.

You know that game that came out about a month ago, Battlefield 3?

Pretty fun right? With the shooting and the giant maps and the tanks and explosions and marksman headshot +500…

I assume so, anyway. I played and enjoyed the beta, but insofar EA haven’t actually let me download the game ever since I pre-ordered. This wasn’t some $10 indie alpha pre-order either. This set me back 80 bucks.

Here’s how the last month has gone:

Day -1, I try to preload: It’s there in the menu, it has a nice shiny download button just like the beta did, and it’s going to be fucking awesome. Come to papa you tasty slice of shooting heaven… Now, to wait 5 hours while it downloads…

*windows “warning” sound*

For some unknown reason at some point towards the end of the 11GB download for the full version, I disconnected from EA’s “activation server”.

As a precautionary measure, Origin deletes the entire download.

…The entire, mostly done, 11GB download.

I’ve seen some bad, un-user-friendly DRM, but this is the first time I’ve had to deal with something this heavy-handed. I told myself “It’s likely some issue with preloading, Origin is quite new, it’ll be sorted after release week”.

Release week came and went and I tried again.

Same thing. Another 10GB wasted.

Now, I live in Australia. Bandwidth isn’t cheap here (As you might have noticed with how frugal I’m having to be with the Aussie Official Server…) so the combined 20GB pushed me over my download limit for the month. Not only was I without my game, I was also stuck with internet throttled down to dial-up speed.

At this point, naturally I’m less than happy. I give up for a few weeks, then give in to temptation again. I really want to play this game!

Same thing. Another 8GB wasted. I guess at least this time I’ve got 2GB spare…

As such, I’ve given up for now. I’ll see if I can install from a friend’s disk or something, but I’m not going to get my hopes up. I’ve probably purchased some download only licence.

I think the lesson to be learned here is: Let people play your game. I’ve been looking forward to the next “real” Battlefield for years now, but I still haven’t actually been able to play it, even though I’ve payed for the damn thing and downloaded it 2.5 times over!

The ridiculous part of this is that from what I understand, cracked versions of the game are missing the DRM layer. Pirates get the fun bit, without all the bullshit, for free, and thus the only people affected by DRM are people who’ve payed for the game legitimately!

I’ve paid a company 80 dollars to spend about 28GB of download on… nothing. I haven’t been able to play it. However, buying voxatron from lexaloffle as part of last months humble bundle was painless, cost me 15 bucks for a cheerful, colourful adventure and a peek at some very interesting technology. I also picked up two other games as a bonus. When you buy alpha access to KAG, as soon as your paypal payment goes through we send you a code to redeem for full version access to everything we’ve got finished.

What’s so hard about letting people play a game, EA? *grumble*

tl;dr: This is me trying to play a game I’ve been anticipating for years that I’m unable to play due to some borked copyright protection protocol. I wish they’d be less stoogey about it and let me play:


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