EA Giving Out Reasons To Buy: Tries Deluxe Box Set Versions Of Games

from the neat dept

Someone submitted the following anonymously, suggesting that it was a bad idea, but it seems like a worthwhile experiment to me. EA announced a pre-order offering for a special “Collector’s Edition” version of its game Dragon Age, which includes a fancy steel case, a cloth map of the world, a “making-of” documentary, a soundtrack of the game and a bunch of other extras. It basically sounds just like what many musicians are now doing by offering special deluxe packages for serious fans. It’s a way to segment customers, so some can buy the cheaper regular version, and others, who really, really like the game, can go all out and get the deluxe set — including all sorts of scarce goods that can’t be “pirated.”

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Comments on “EA Giving Out Reasons To Buy: Tries Deluxe Box Set Versions Of Games”

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Blenster (profile) says:

Re: Blizzard

I was VERY pleased with the Warcraft III Collector’s Box and frequently show it off as an example of “what to do”. Conversely I felt very cheated by the Half Life 2 Collector’s Box which came with the game on a single DVD instead of multiple CDs and a X-Large tee-shirt (that looks like a tent on me) and frequently point that out when showing how great Blizzard did with Warcraft III. My opinion of Blizzard as a company is much higher than that of Valve, even though I love the games Valve creates. I feel like Valve ripped me off and I *still* get annoyed when I think about that, years later.

Anonymous Coward says:

Sounds like old news to me. I have collectors editions from a number of different games, including World of Warcraft and Guild wars. They are also not uncommon in the console gaming world. Consider the fallout 3 lunchbox CE and the halo Master Chief helmet CE.

Considering that in most cases the value of what gets bundled into the CE is more than the price difference between the regular edition and the CE I’m not positive they make economic sense, but they definitely can foster consumer loyalty.

Peter says:

I am interested in Dragon Age. I purchased a lot of Bioware games. Baldurs Gate 1&2, NWN (and expansions), KOTOR. Probably half the games I purchased were from Bioware.

I dreaded the day that EA bought them. Because I won’t buy a game that requires interaction with remote DRM servers to play (which is typical EA). I will be watching Dragon Age closely. Have I already bought my last Bioware game? The ball is in EAs court.

I always wondered who buys these more expensive big metal box things. Might have been cool when I was kid, but these days I love the new small box games, don’t like my large boxes that take up more room. A metal case that takes up even more. That won’t win me over.

Screw around with DRM servers again and a long time paying customer will be lost here.

Ed C. says:

From the nothing-new department...

So, I remember when some companies used to put freebies with every copy. I’ve got a few posters, extras and sound track CDs, and even a novel! Most of them weren’t even collector’s or GOTY editions either. Ya, that was even back before anyone ever heard of digital distribution or internet piracy! Of course, the reason they did it then was because the market was flooded with games and they were trying anything to get noticed.

Nowadays, we mere gamers are treated like serifs that should be grateful whenever they get around to releasing patches for the broken productes we paid for.

Kash says:

Just look at Call of Duty, Modern Warfare 2. There are three editions. The regular, game only. the “hardened edition”, a more typical collectors edition with steel case, dvd, art book, etc. And the “prestige edition”, which includes everything the other two do and a pair of night vision goggles.

Yes, real life night vision goggles. All for only $149.99

Ilfar says:

I likes my shinies

Given a choice between the standard version and the special one, I’ve always been a sucker for the shinier pack…

Total Annihilation (came with the game guide), Starcraft (came with the guides too!), Supreme Commander (Shiny metal box, posters, big metal thing), Spore (Making of DVD and art book)…

An extra couple or ten bucks, and I get fancy stuff to put on my walls. Who could say no? 😀

ryan says:

I agree with all the people that say “This is nothing new!” because it isn’t. Nevertheless, it being an old idea doesn’t make it a bad idea. I love collector’s/limited/special editions when it comes to games and I always buy them instead of the regular editions.

I have to confess that I have somewhat of a collector’s streak, so it definitely doesn’t apply to everybody, but these collector’s/limited/special editions are the best anti-piracy method one could come up with in my opinion.

Bottom line is: yes, this is one good example of giving people a reason to buy and many game publishers use it (successfully I would say). Also, another good reason to buy, when it comes to EA, is that they are starting to come to their senses about DRM: the retail version of Dragon Age will have only a basic disk check. I really appreciate the fact that they listened to the users’ feedback and acted upon it.

Van says:

Not new, but still a great idea

I agree with the other commenters: this isn’t a new idea. It is, however, an awesome one for the right crowd. Just the other day I was looking through my Warcraft III Collector’s Edition box set. I’ve had it for seven years, and I still like to go through it every now and then. It included a bunch of stuff which significantly added to the value and experience of the purchase (although it was notably more expensive — something like $30 more than the standard version).

The problem with this is that it often only appeals to a certain crowd. I, for example, greatly enjoy the tactile and visual sensations of the stuff that comes in these. Some people, however, “just want to play the game.”

batch (profile) says:

The collectors edition is not the new part

The new part is that, if you buy this game new, not second hand or pirate it, you get two pieces of the download only DLC included: http://kotaku.com/5335971/dragon-age-pre+order-scheme-gains-%252B1-against-used-sales

If a person buys the game used, they would have to pay for this extra content, should they want it, instead of it being included in the box.

Urza says:

'Collectors Edition'. Right.

How about they make some of this stuff _standard_, like they used to. A cloth map of the game for example. Nearly every game that I bought before around 2000 came with some kind of big fold-out map of some sort. Some of them cloth. And these weren’t ‘collectors editions’. Most games also used to come with big manuals – with the kind of information they now try to sell separately. And they’d come with stickers too sometimes. And catalogs to buy ‘special edition’ merchandise (T-shirts, patches, pins, etc). Why don’t they bring that stuff back?

Oh, right. Because a ‘Westwood Studios’ T-shirt means something. An ‘EA Games’ one doesn’t.

Sheinen says:

I’ve got the LE Batman:Arkham Asylum on pre-order with Play.com for about £70. It comes with a Bat-Blade! How awesome is that?

I also pre-ordered the LE Assassins Creed 2 with an Altair figurine in the box.

Plus I got the Halo 3 which comes with a life-size Master Chief Helmet and both Gears of War LE Tins with Art Books.

Consoles have a long history of doing this, it doesn’t always work but when they get the right stuff in the bundle I’m happy to pay an extra £20-£30

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