Who Got It Right & Who Got It Wrong: Online Passes

Welcome to my third post in the “Who got it right & Who got it wrong”. In this post we’ll be looking at who got the whole online pass business right, and who got it wrong. I am opposed to online passes especially on the console games.

By the way, do not get DLC codes mixed up with online passes.

Who Got It Wrong.


EA was probably the first company to introduce the online passes. Now every EA game you can find has an online pass.  All because they are scared of the pre-owned market. So if you get the game pre-owned you have to pay another £6 to get a code… a rip off. (Although in Semi-rare cases you might end up paying a full £40 price for a new code).  This is even more of an issue with those who use Xbox live.  I don’t see the problem is getting a game pre-owned, if it saves money then why not?


THQ followed suit not long after. Giving into EA’s pressure. Now even Saints Row 3 has the online pass system. Again another bullshit move.  Homefront was THQ’s first game to use Online passes, and yes they had many problems. Mainly with online pass codes not working even with people who purchased it brand new.


Yes Ubisoft also failed. With Driver San Francisco they had many many problems, to the point of where they got rid of the online pass for good, The problems were like with THQ that the online pass codes were not working, even for those who got the game new.


Sony also followed suit by introducing PSN pass. Thankfully they are on only a small number of games at the moment. Resistance 3 was probably one of the first to use PSN pass. However people have had little problems with the PSN pass system, but since Sony decided to use it … they did it wrong.

Who Got It Right.


Yes oddly enough the most popular multiplayer game does not require an online pass. The companies that made the Call of Duty Series are not afraid of pre-owned sales, and don’t want people to pay another £6 to play online. They pay for their servers with money generated from DLC and overall sales.

Bungie/343 Industries/Microsoft

Yeah another popular game. I’ve yet to see a Halo game that requires any online passes. it shows that the companies are once again not afraid or don’t care about pre-owned sales enough to warrant an online pass. It means you can get the game cheaper and still play online, without having to pay any extra for an online pass.


There are more companies who got it right. However I didn’t want to take forever to list them all. Feel to to add more companies who didn’t include an online pass in the comments. So why do popular games such as Halo and Call of Duty not need an online pass? 

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