If you have been a gamer over the last few years you probably know what the "online pass" system is. You buy the game used or rent it from somewhere, you go to play online and you are greeted with a message. Something along the lines of "Please enter your online pass code or pay $10 to buy one."
Well EA Games
the ones who started the pass system years ago has officially announced that they are killing the program.
Venturebeat.com confirms the news
with an interview from EA
Senior Director of Corporate Communications John Reseburg. “Yes, we’re discontinuing Online Pass. None of our new EA
titles will include that feature. Initially launched as an effort to package a full menu of online content and services, many players didn’t respond to the format. We’ve listened to the feedback and decided to do away with it moving forward” says Reseburg.
Other companies haven't announced if they will be doing the same although Warner Brothers and Netherealm Studios may have. Mortal Kombat which came out in 2011 had an online pass but the recently released Injustice: Gods Among Us did NOT come with a pass.
To this I say, good riddance. The online pass nonsense actually made me not buy games instead of buying new. I would rent games from Gamefly to see if I'd enjoy them enough to actually buy them, but if online play was restricted through a pass I wouldn't even bother. I'm not going to pay $10 to play online from a rental and then pay another $60 for the game new essentially making the pass useless. If they just let me play online they would have gotten my money but since they restricted online through these passes they got none of my money.
I wouldn't have such a problem with online passes if they came with free trials, but sadly it seems like a lot of games did away with the free trials and went for a "pay or deal with it" approach.