EA destroys Battlefield: Heroes with good ‘ol fashioned greed.

by Mike
Posted December 1st, 2009 at 4:48 pm


Online gaming is one of those things that can gain quite a loyal following. Look no further than WoW (World of Warcraft). WoW has one of the most devout user bases I’ve experienced in my short 22 years of life. But WoW isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. For those looking for a tad more variety and more casual game play (read: you don’t have to become completely entrenched), a worthy option was Battlefield: Heroes by EA. It is a great online shooter/war game that is basically a more realistic and earthly version of WoW. EA launched the game initially with a rather unique and instantly popular pricing structure structure — free play as much as you like with options to buy your way more power, health, prestige, etc for cheap.

If you had come to love Battlefield: Heroes and it’s open, free structure, sorry to say that it’s as good as gone. EA’s throwing down the all too familiar paywall. Making money is good and all, but company after company is taking an originally free product and later backtracking on the whole free thing leaving users pissed and the companies image tarnished…

The great thing about Battlefield: Heroes was that those not looking to chip in (as this was more of a casual gaming experience) didn’t feel compelled as simply playing the game and earning there way through the ranks came fairly quick. For most, the speed at which you actually could earn you way was sufficient that few people actually spent any real money. I played Battlefield: Heroes for maybe a couple weeks about a month back and got bored after awhile. It was fun and game play without paying was indeed fast and worthwhile. It just wasn’t enough to keep me hooked. Good thing I got over the initial draw as now it’s going to become fairly expensive and/or time consuming to continue playing with anywhere near the power, arsenal, or prestige of the free model.

The sad thing is EA has taken one great piece of the internet, a near perfect online game that brought people of all kinds of gamers together — casual and more hardcore — and completely ruined it. If I were even thinking about going back to playing Heroes and cutting some play time down by buying my way through, I’d definitely step back and take a second look now that the money hounds are out.

So why am I writing about this and getting so upset if I don’t even play it anymore? Because it sucks. That’s why. It’s a disservice to the loyal gamers and casual gamers alike who enjoyed Battlefield: Heroes. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it wouldn’t necessarily be the right term. Instead, a more fitting phrase such as: “If it isn’t broken, Innovate it” would seem more appropriate. Unfortunately for Heroes gamers, EA took something that wasn’t broken and decimated it.

Ars Technica

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5 ResponsesLeave a comment
  • kriegtrooper95
    December 29, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    it saddens me about the whole thing I’ve been playing since open beta first came out i had thoroughly enjoyed it the price was just right for me to keep my stuff and have fun but then the update came and now it is impossible for me to keep one item for more then a few days
    and whats worse is that absolutely everyone in the game feels either betrayed or screwed over

    worst of all some people actually think it’s just a matter of weather your willing to mow a lawn or two to buy virtual information when it’s a matter of principle it’s the fact that it’s yet another example of companies trying to nickle and dime us for crap we don’t need

  • online game
    December 2, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    Battle field is an excellent game. I am interested in it.

  • Werbetechnik
    December 2, 2009 at 11:51 am

    The really sad thing about this whole issue is the follwing.
    In my opinion the whole concept just failed. I mean
    seriously… the game is made for kids or teenagers.
    Is this really a good place to expect alot of money from?
    I think the answer is clearly: NO.
    And its getting worse. There were weapons available for
    money. These weapons do exactly the same like the free.
    Sense? Ok you save some VP (playmoney).
    Now they put in weapons (again) for real money wich
    is giving an decent advantage. Ok fine, but like i’ve
    said before. Game is for kids, they won’t profit here.

    Sorry for my worse English, but i did the best i could :)

  • Homer
    December 2, 2009 at 1:19 am

    Nice article, I wouldnt go as far to say it was a perfect game, as the game has long been plauged by hackers (although not as much as people complain about), and bugs.

    I played the game alot myself and I strongly believe that EA has shot themselves in the foot. Ben Cousins has been quoted as saying “Battlefield Heroes is a business at the end of the day” and “we need to increase the amount of BF that people buy”, but you dont do that by eliminating 90% of the gamers that play the game. That will leave the 5% of the players that pay to support the game with groves of empty servers.

    They’ve offended potential customers and ruined the experience for those who actually paid for the game. Not to mention the fact that they decimated server sales from their partners (leetservers, branzone, and more). The game was also ad supported, lets see how their ad parnters react to having less than 1/3rd of the total of players continuing to play.

    Finally Ben Cousins mentioned that “for a company like EA who recently laid off 16% of their workforce, we need to keep an eye on the accounts and make sure we are doing our bit for the company.” well its no wonder EA is reducing their work force with dumb decisions like killing off hundreds of thousands of potential customers.

    • Mike
      December 2, 2009 at 6:09 am

      Maybe my description of “perfect” was a bit off. But I couldn’t agree with you more when it comes to stupid business decisions. EA simply saw a way to squeeze more money out of people and take advantage of them. Now the gamers will speak their minds by walking away. It always shocks me how most large companies have some of the most incompetent and disconnected people running the ship. *shakes head*

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