At Sony's E3 2011 press conference this summer, where Game Rant had 11 of its staff in attendance, we were all told the neat news that anyone who purchased the Limited Edition of Battlefield 3 for PS3 would get Battlefield 1943 for free. This occurs rather commonly on PS3 releases since the Blu-ray discs have plenty of spare capacity for publishers to offer more incentive. For example, Assassin's Creed: Revelations includes the original Assassin's Creed on PS3 as a bonus.
As gamers who opted to purchase BF3 on PS3, some undoubtedly choosing that platform over the others thanks to the added value of BF 1943, came to realize when opening their package, there was no Battlefield 1943 to be found.
EA and Sony hadn't explained that they were dropping the exclusive bonus, they just let it be until the last minute, knowing full well that people were pre-ordering Battlefield 3 to get the Limited Edition. So, once everyone caught on, what did they offer instead? From a tweet on the official Battlefield Twitter account:
“In lieu of 1943 being available on disk for PS3 customers, EA has made all BF3 expansions available early to PS3 customers.”
PS3 players instead get DLC a week early. Not good.
A similar situation just occured with Saints Row: The Third where it was also announced during the Sony press event that the PS3 edition of the game would include an exclusive mode. Again, no exclusive mode was found and publisher THQ and developer Volition offered "no comment" on inquiries about this. As a last minute fix, they announced that these players would be able to download Saints Row 2 for free so all was well.
When we shared the Battlefield 1943 omission news and EA's substitute offer, the first two comments from readers immediately said EA should/could be sued for this and wouldn't you know, that's exactly what's happening.
On Friday, law firm Edelson McGuire filed a class action lawsuit against EA for what essentially amounts to intentionally misleading consumers, or as Kotaku explains, "misled and profited from thousands of their customers by making a promise that they could not, and never intended, to keep."
This isn't some sort of money grab on the part of lawyers taking advantage of the situation. All they're fighting for is getting Battlefield 1943 in the hands of the players who were told they'd get it.
Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.