False Advertising Plagues Video Game Publisher, EA Goes into Hiding (Update)
EA is in virtual lockdown after thousands of complaints about misleading advertising from the publisher have circulated online.
Despite over 20 attempts to contact EA over this last week, Aussie-Gamer have not been contacted in reply by the company in regards to the allegations they are misleading consumers in a targeted online marketing campaign surrounding it’s Battlefield 3 Premium video game.
The complaints started last week when EA released BF3 Premium, promising gamers the service for AU$49.99. The Premium service allows users early access to downloadable content (DLC) as well as special events that take place inside the game.
The problem, though, was that EA was actually charging gamers more money than they advertised. The game on Xbox Live costs AU$66 to download, while PlayStation 3 owners have to cough up AU$65.95 – which is slightly lower than last week’s AU$79.95 the publisher were charging PS3 owners. The price was lowered after fans on the official EA forums complained and demanded answers;
“We’ve been happy to hear the enthusiastic Australian and New Zealand Battlefield fan response to the game changing content and services offered in Battlefield 3 Premium, and equally appreciate their constructive feedback on launch pricing in the region. After further consideration we will be changing our pricing strategy to bring the Battlefield 3 Premium service for PlayStation3 into closer alignment with local market pricing.
Starting today, PlayStation 3 fans in Australia will be able to purchase Battlefield 3 Premium for 64.95 and in New Zealand for 79.95.
For Australian and New Zealand fans who purchased Battlefield 3 Premium at our initial launch pricing: PlayStation will be refunding the difference. Stay tuned for more details.”
Gamers from all over the globe are reporting outrage at EA. In Sweden, where the game is developed, gamers are expected to pay the equivalent of US$70, despite it being advertised locally at $49.99.
Bizarrely, PC gamers are being charged the advertised price of AU$49.99.
You can get a quick run down of this story by checking out our handy infographic here.
Since posting this article, a communication channel with EA has been opened. We will be posting a follow up once all our questions are answered.