Not essential to game play
Electronic Arts has confirmed the EA Sports Season Pass, as we told you about some months back. While EA claims that the purchase of the Season Pass is not essential to game play and those opting to not purchase it will not be adversely affected, a number of the features could tempt even those video game sports fans that are objecting the most.
Those who opt to spend the 2000 Microsoft Points/$25 will get a number of things that might make it worth it to consider the purchase. First, it is important to know that the EA Sports Season Pass covers all of the main EA Sports franchise, including FIFA, Madden, NHL, and Tiger Woods PGA Tour. The biggest feature is that the Season Pass will give subscribers the ability to download the full version of each new release at least three days before it actually hits retail; and any achievements you earn will transfer over to your retail copy when you purchase it. The early downloaded version will have a hard time-out that will not allow play after it expires.
Beyond early access, subscribers will also get a membership badge that will identify subscribers within the games as well as a 20% discount on all EA Sports DLC and access to additional subscriber-only premium web content. EA Sports intends to evolve the season pass each year to include more new features, but out of the gate this is all they are promising to start with. GameStop is the exclusive retail marketing partner for the EA Sports Season Pass. The Season Pass will be offered for both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, with other platforms perhaps possible in the future. It is being launched in North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand to start with, and may be introduced in other regions in the future.
While EA insists this isn’t about making money, many are already convinced that it is just that. EA claims that it is about offering access and a service to its hard core video game sports fans. We have to think that the jury is out on how many players will flock to become subscribers, but we believe that in order to maximize the value of the Season Pass you have to be playing more than just one or two of the EA Sports franchise.