Electronic Arts Suspends SimCity Marketing - UPDATED

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Electronic Arts Suspends SimCity Marketing - UPDATED

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Electronic Arts has asked its online affiliates to "please stop actively promoting" the beleaguered SimCity.

The latest twist in the SimCity nightmare from which Electronic Arts cannot awaken is truly amazing. In an email sent out this morning, the publisher asked affiliates of Origin's Linkshare program to stop promoting SimCity. EA has "deactivated all SimCity text links and creative," the email said, "and we ask you to please remove any copy promoting SimCity from your website for the time-being."

"To be clear we are continuing to payout commissions on all SimCity sales that are referred, however we are requesting that you please stop actively promoting the game," the email states. "We will notify you as soon as the SimCity marketing campaigns have been resumed and our promotional links are once again live in the Linkshare interface. We apologize for any inconveniences that this may cause, and we thank you for your cooperation."

The problem, of course, is that SimCity servers have proven woefully inadequate for the demands of the game. EA has promised to add more servers over the weekend to lighten the load, and in the meantime has disabled "non-critical" gameplay features in hopes of bringing stability to core gameplay, an effort that at this point appears to have largely failed. Amazon actually stopped selling the game yesterday because of all the technical issues, although it has since put it back into rotation, and a not-entirely-surprising petition demanding the removal of always-on DRM in this and future EA games has attracted nearly 39,000 signatures.

Stay tuned!

Source: Polygon

UPDATE: We contacted EA and were told that the company would not be commenting on the situation.

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This is like watching a slow motion trainwreck unfold. Only it's worse because I actually bought the game and am one of the idiots who's trapped in the trainwreck.

Wow, they really screwed this one up, didn't they?

I find it strange more than anything else. This is not a small company trying to do something big, this is one of the industries largest, and they can't even manage it.

Who the hell tested all of this? Why did they not do it more thoroughly?

I just can't see it from their perspective, how they couldn't have this sort of thing sorted out. They need to win people over more than any other company.

oh god, then the constant threads on 4chan about the game actually being good may finally stop.

ZZoMBiE13:
This is like watching a slow motion trainwreck unfold. Only it's worse because I actually bought the game and am one of the idiots who's trapped in the trainwreck.

Same here... It's a real mess, someone screwed up on an unimaginable scale. At the same time, I really dislike all the "EA broke Sim City, down with the evil empire" rhetoric that's being thrown around.

Here's hoping the "Evil Ampire" will fix this soon...

Someone tell Detroit they're not the most depressing city anymore!

I was really sad when I heard the problems, it would have been a day 1 buy for me, but luckily I held off for a few days.
But now I'm probably getting more entertainment out of this mess than if I actually played the game.

You know EA's release of Sim City is not unlike how I used played Sim City 3000 back in the day. I'm half expecting EA's headquarters to be destroyed by space debris come tomorrow morning :P

A few more unmitigated disasters like this and maybe EA will rethink it's approach to game development and publishing. Maybe.

EA may be one of those companies so bloated and incompetent, however, that there actually isn't anyone to learn from this. How often does a huge company that fucks up all the time actually change things around for the better? In my estimation, the end of this road is the company just imploding.

Never going to post or view this website again, because this Star Craft 2 ad blocks up 90% of my screen when trying to comment.

"Stop telling people about our horribly broken game! It's hard to sweep this under a rug when people keep taking the tour!"

It's almost sad that an increasing amount of the criticism directed at EA could be filed not even under "this is a horrible way to treat your customers" but "this is a really bad idea that will come back and bite you in the ass." There's some bleed between the two, of course...

The plus side to this mess is that it seems highly unlikely that EA is going to try always-on DRM again anytime soon. The SimCity launch has just been too much of a disaster. Hell, this may even encourage other companies to not do similar things in the future.

While it certainly sucks that loads of people can't effectively play something they paid sixty dollars for, I do think that SimCity's horrific launch will probably be good for the long-term, as it will probably reduce the amount of draconian DRM that companies use. And less draconian DRM is certainly good for the consumer.

Oh God, this just gets better and better.

I mean sucks that people lost money but holy shit this is funny, EA have been completely wreaked by their own stupid decision.

The karma. It's delicious.

ViciousTide:
Never going to post or view this website again, because this Star Craft 2 ad blocks up 90% of my screen when trying to comment.

because as we all are aware by now, there is no 'close' button on the top right hand corner of the ad.

dont worry, Im sure /vg/ will be more accommodating.

OT: uh, hey guys, can you stop promoting our broke ass game until we can claim we fixed it?

that would be swell, thanks.

Here's my theory of what happened:

The online component actually is not purely DRM, but actually cloud processing (which is a completely new field for games) many of the game's internal calculations - like advertised. However, somewhere along the line someone within EA or Maxis or both grossly misrepresented the bandwidth need to either please their boss, save their own arse or keep the project afloat, leading to a complete mismanagement of server bandwidth provided versus what this ambitious technology would actually need.

Man, all these Simcity / EA news messages is like a gift that keeps on giving
Let's see what happens next.

I'm cooking up some popcorn, any takers?

What do you mean, it's broken? I've been playing just fine ever since day one! I've got this big city and a subway system and avenues and -

What?

Oh, silly me. I've been playing SimCity 4!

Lawl.

ohnoitsabear:
The plus side to this mess is that it seems highly unlikely that EA is going to try always-on DRM again anytime soon. The SimCity launch has just been too much of a disaster. Hell, this may even encourage other companies to not do similar things in the future.

We saw how well that worked out with Diablo 3.

Longstreet:
Man, all these Simcity / EA news messages is like a gift that keeps on giving
Let's see what happens next.

I'm cooking up some popcorn, any takers?

Ah, awesome, I'll have a bag!

IamLEAM1983:
What do you mean, it's broken? I've been playing just fine ever since day one! I've got this big city and a subway system and avenues and -

What?

Oh, silly me. I've been playing SimCity 4!

Lawl.

I'll take you up on that offer.

OT: As pretty much everyone and their cat have already said, who did not see this happening? Maybe not at this scale but still...

I'll take some pawpcawn too, if you don't mind. No butter, though.

Yeah, it was pretty obvious. I gave into my Maxis fanboyism (something which dates back to SimCity One) and forgot EA was associated. I figure things will be eventually sorted out, but I'm glad someone's putting this new DRM schtick through the wringer.

As someone else has said: a few more epic fails and the industry will wake up.

Oh my god...

It just does not stop...it doesn't stop!

Okay, I kind of need to call it at this point. Cutting off ads to a non-functioning game is post-apocalyptic corporate protocol 101, it's not like anyone would be better off if they hadn't done that. Seriously, half of you sound like my wife at this point.

I'm always down for some EA wristslapping, but only when a wristslapping is in order. Now you're just reporting on their daily lives, this article tells me nothing.

Also don't get me wrong, they dun goof'd. I just think we should only say that in the articles where they did actually fuck up.

My god, this is hilarious :D

This has got to be the best EA drama yet.

/popcorn

Well. This is a first for me.
I've seen marketing and ads pulled for many reasons, but to keep people from buying the game to save face and stand up servers is a new one.

Can we not make it 1 week without someone in the industry shitting the bed?

you know things are bad when EA have are out right saying "no comment" about somehting like this. im wondering now if this has potentially soured and killed off the simcity brand

People need to stop buying these DRM controlled pieces of shit. Whining for refunds isnt going to make a publisher change their minds on DRM. theyll just say to themselves damn they're really made, we should make the DRM better next time.

im so so sick of reading about gamers and reviewers complaining about drm then either buying it or reviewing it. make a stand. say no. if they push his drm bullshit on us refuse to buy it, websites refuse to review it or even talk about it. this crap needs to die and it never ever will if you people keep buying the games just because you like the series regardless of the garbage they're making you deal with in order to play it.

I'm actually getting a bit of entertainment out of this trainwreck. Considering that I spend $60 on the game, it does help offset that expense.

Tune in next week when Starcraft 2 blows up the internet too.

kaizen2468:
People need to stop buying these DRM controlled pieces of shit. Whining for refunds isnt going to make a publisher change their minds on DRM. theyll just say to themselves damn they're really made, we should make the DRM better next time.

im so so sick of reading about gamers and reviewers complaining about drm then either buying it or reviewing it. make a stand. say no. if they push his drm bullshit on us refuse to buy it, websites refuse to review it or even talk about it. this crap needs to die and it never ever will if you people keep buying the games just because you like the series regardless of the garbage they're making you deal with in order to play it.

It's kind of a reviewer's job to review them. The average consumer isn't necessarily going to know about all this always-online DRM stuff, and a review is potentially the only way they're going to learn about it.

OT: With all this talk about the DRM problems, I've never actually heard anyone comment on whether or not the base game is any good. It's almost moot at this point, but at least with Diablo III, I knew about the title of the quality as a whole, in addition to the DRM problems. The only thing I know about this game is that it's having DRM problems, which, let's face it, we all saw coming a mile away.

How could they not see this coming? It happens with every game that demands constant connection in order to run.

It's like people have never been part of a release-day server fuckup in a game. Honestly, people being up in arms about this is so 2002. If you care that much, get a refund. Otherwise, have some patience and wait it out.

Other than that: Bla bla bla, EA hate, bla.

kaizen2468:
People need to stop buying these DRM controlled pieces of shit. Whining for refunds isnt going to make a publisher change their minds on DRM. theyll just say to themselves damn they're really made, we should make the DRM better next time.

im so so sick of reading about gamers and reviewers complaining about drm then either buying it or reviewing it. make a stand. say no. if they push his drm bullshit on us refuse to buy it, websites refuse to review it or even talk about it. this crap needs to die and it never ever will if you people keep buying the games just because you like the series regardless of the garbage they're making you deal with in order to play it.

I honestly don't think that many ppl outside the echo chamber of gaming sites really mind drm. Uplay, Steam, Blizz (starcraft 2 D3) whatever it is I'm actually fine with it cause its usually been relatively invisible for me. Granted this sims launch has been screwy for some but outside that drms always been a non issue. (for me)

What refund. EA is refusing any and all refunds.

Funny, I just started up Origin and the first thing that hit me in the face was a pop-up begging me to buy SimCity.

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