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Backlash Over Battlefront 2 Grind Sparks Death Threats

Electronic Arts

Yesterday a story was posted about concerns over the Star Wars Battlefront 2 progression system, and how the community felt about it. The issue has gained steam today with the community going into full meltdown mode following EA’s response over the weekend.

Reddit has unsurprisingly fanned the flames, with one particular thread which includes a response from EA has now become the most downvoted comment of all time on Reddit. As of writing it’s currently standing at 350K downvotes. Other responses by EA on the subreddit have thousands of downvotes as well.

And of course, once the issue hit Twitter, things went from bad to worse. EA’s Matt Everett posted a Tweet calling the community “Armchair developers”. That Tweet was subsequently deleted and a follow-up was posted by Matt to clarify.

The uglier side of the videogaming communities has also surfaced with an EA developer receiving death threats. He posted:

The progression system is a broken mess of grinding hell, but that doesn’t make it justified to engage in threats against developers. Or anyone for that matter.

These ugly issues stem from the response posted yesterday in a thread detailing how long it would take to unlock even a single hero. This was roughly calculated at around 40 hours. The response from EA attempted to explain the reasoning behind the progression system.

Our goal involves creating a compelling progression path for all of our players. There’s a lot of content at launch with even more coming via live service, and we’ll continuously adjust our progression mechanics to give players a sense of accomplishment as they explore all of Battlefront 2.

I posted this in another thread, but feel it would be good to post here as well.

Heroes earned through Credits: The intent is to provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment for unlocking different heroes. We selected initial values based upon data from the Open Beta and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before launch. Among other things, we’re looking at average per-player credit earn rates on a daily basis, and we’ll be making constant adjustments to ensure that players have challenges that are compelling, rewarding, and of course attainable via gameplay.

Credits Earned: We’re looking at the results daily and will be continuing to tune this to ensure that players feel a meaningful sense of reward for the time they spend with Battlefront 2.

We appreciate the conversation here, and our team is working to make the best choices possible for the game and the players. We will provide more details and updates as we can.

There’s a clear issue with how EA built the progression system, and this issue is going to be a problem in other games in the future, but this backlash crosses a line. Being angry and seeking a refund is fine, but personal attacks that include threats of violence are not. It’s video games, not exactly something worth getting this riled up over.

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Everyone remembers when a Black Ops II patch caused someone to send death threats to a developer. This behavior is a recurring issue in the gaming community, and some people need to address their sense of extreme entitlement before this gets any worse.

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