EA Confirms No Online Pass for Syndicate (Because Co-op is Half the Game)
Electronic Arts has a policy of including online passes in all of its games in some form of another, but it has confirmed that the upcoming first-person shooter re-imagining of Syndicate won’t include an online pass.
According to EA Partners executive producer Jeff Gamon, the reason is that Syndicate relies heavily on cooperative play and doesn’t include competitive multiplayer. “We want as little resistance or barriers to entry as possible,” Gamon said. “The co-op is equal billing in this. We wanted everyone who owns a copy of the game to have access to the entire product.
“Under normal circumstances it would have had an online pass, but because it didn’t have competitive multiplayer and because we wanted as many people as possible to be playing co-op, we got away with it.”
Gamon’s comments about the online pass are somewhat telling: he mentions wanting everyone to have full access to the product (a shocking idea) and notes that Starbreeze and EA Partners are “confident in the scope of the online game.” Suggesting that when EA throws an online pass on a game, it’s psychologically undermining the value of that game over the long term, because it assumes you’re going to get bored and hock it? What a strange point of view.
Syndicate packs nine co-op maps, Gamon said, and each map will take “six or seven hours” to complete with a friend. There’s also a ton of character progression to be had both in co-op and single player, which Gamon says EA Partners and Starbreeze are hoping will “discourage early second-hand sales and rentals.”
Hopefully the brave experiment of providing quality game content to discourage second-hand sales rather than just punishing players for not ponying up full price will be a success. But I suppose we’ll see.
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