Indian PC gamers have taken to Facebook and Twitter to air their discontent at the rising prices of EA's PC games.
Using the #EAPCIndia hashtag, designed to give Indian gamers a single platform to make themselves heard on the issue, gamers continue to share their opinions on the matter. While some question the reasoning behind the dramatic hike, others see it as a move that will push most PC gamers back towards piracy.
EA announced a couple of days ago that it will price FIFA 14 at Rs 2,499 and Battlefield 4 and Need for Speed: Rivals at Rs 3,499. That's up from last year's price of Rs 1,499 – a 66% to 133% hike.
The reasoning behind the hike is that EA would like prices for its PC games around the world to be the equivalent of $60, for various reasons. The primary reason is that gamers outside India have been able to gain VPN access to the India Origin store and take advantage of lower Indian prices. This was a major issue during the release of Battlefield 3 Premium and it prompted EA to stop preorders on the Indian store. But the issue came up again following the release of SimCity, which resulted in the game being pulled and then re-released at a higher price. It seems quite harsh for EA to penalise the Indian market for Origin's technical deficiencies. Steam has been quite successful in cracking down on users who abuse the system to circumvent region locks in such a way.
New PC games usually retail for Rs 999 in India, and while that price will increase across the board this year due to the weak Indian Rupee against the US Dollar, the hike for non-EA games is far less severe. Games like Watch Dogs and Batman: Arkham Origins are currently on preorder for Rs 1,499, less than half the price of an EA PC game.
It's worth mentioning that as far as PC and console games go, EA does not have an official presence in India, but operates here through distributors. So these are being set by an EA team located in Australia or South East Asia. The #EAPCIndia campaign, as IVG puts it, is not designed to get EA to reverse its prices, but to simply give Indian PC gamers a singular platform to share their opinions, and hopefully get that message across to EA.
Here are a few reactions from Indian PC gamers on Twitter.
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