EA has a poor reputation among the gaming community due to the implementation of DLC, microtransactions, pre-order bonuses and other anti-consumer initiatives. Furthermore, their behaviour resulted in the demise of various franchises including Dead Space and Medal of Honor. This is a crying shame because the Dead Space series originally evoked such a tense, atmospheric feel and eventually went onto become a generic third-person action game. On another note, EA decided to make their games exclusive to the Origin digital distribution service and gamers could no longer use their favourite client, Steam. Consumers are quite vocal in their distaste for the Origin system and prefer to have a huge catalogue of games in one client.
Arguably, there’s some logic in EA’s decision because they didn’t want to accept Valve’s cut for selling games on the Steam service. Although, I do wonder if the company would still be making more money on Steam due to the significantly higher user base. Whatever the case, Origin isn’t a terrible system and includes a number of interesting features such as the Great Game Guarantee. This allows the end-user to acquire a refund incase the game doesn’t meet their expectations or run properly. Every so often, EA also launches a promotion entitled, ‘On The House’ which grants access to a major release for FREE! The latest game to be added to the promotion is Need For Speed: Most Wanted.
While it’s technically part of the Need For Speed series, the game really is a modernized version of Burnout Paradise. This isn’t surprising as it’s made by Criterion Games, one of the most iconic racing developers ever created. Need For Speed: Most Wanted isn’t the best game I’ve played but it’s certainly a lot of fun hurtling around corners and avoiding oncoming traffic. Please be aware the promotion can end quite abruptly as shown by the recent Jade Empire deal.