There have been some rumors circulating that Battlefield 3 might require an online pass of sorts for console players to play online. And online pass is usually a code included in the game, and means that players who buy games used will not be able to play online. Instead, they’ll have to fork over some cash (usually $5 to $10), in order to play online. This system has been used quite often lately by publishers, in an effort to curb their losses from used game sales.
According to DICE Patrick Bach, Battlefield 3 will support some sort of online pass system, as he told GamerZines, where second hand players would have to pay an additional fee for online multiplayer. Bach said,
“We would rather have you buy a new game than a used game because buying a used game is only a cost to us; we don’t get a single dime from a used game, but we still need to create server space and everything for you.”
The previous Battlefield game, Bad Company 2, featured an online pass of sorts, called VIP, which gave access to multiplayer and some extra content. However, it did not limit online gameplay. EA has touted its “Project Ten Dollar” method of getting more revenue from used game sales, by blocking online play to those who buy a used console game.
While this is new for consoles, it has always been the case with PC games, where a cd/dvd key was given out and could only be used once — those who bought the game used could rarely play online. Digital downloads are even more restrictive, as you can’t sell your digitaly downloaded games.