EA Unveils List Of 8 Free Games It’s Offering To Disgruntled SimCity Customers

Time for olive branches.

Time for olive branches.

UPDATE: Electronic Arts has announced that CEO John Riccitiello is stepping down. His last day on the job will be March 30. Maybe he didn’t want to have to accept another Golden Poo?


As we reported a little over a week ago, parts of EA’s “we’re so sorry we biffed the SimCity launch” campaign, the company had announced it would be offering a free PC download of one of its games to disgruntled customers, but deigned to reveal then which titles would be available. In an email to customers today, EA included a link to its FAQ page with a list of eight game downloads.

Calling these options “some of EA’s top hits,” the company is offering up the following downloads on Origin to users who register their SimCity game by March 25 — and all freebies must be redeemed by March 30:

  • Battlefield 3 (Standard Edition)
  • Bejeweled 3
  • Dead Space 3 (Standard Edition)
  • Mass Effect 3 (Standard Edition)
  • MOHW (Standard Edition)
  • NFS Most Wanted (Standard Edition)
  • Plants vs. Zombies
  • SimCity 4 Deluxe Edition

Included in the email as well is a note from Maxis apologizing yet again for the awful experiences many SimCity players have had with the game — while also noting that at least some people are having fun.

Our SimCity Mayors are incredibly important to the team at Maxis. We know we messed up and want to sincerely thank you for staying with us. The good news is we have solved most of the major issues and players are really enjoying the game. We’re getting great feedback from our fans and know that many of you are having fun and are exploring this whole new expression of SimCity.

We can’t weigh in on the quality of this game offering — is it an empty gesture made valueless by the overwhelmingly bad experience you’ve had playing, or is it an appropriate olive branch? In other words — are these games you actually want?

We’ve heard back from some of our readers already who paid for SimCity only to be disappointed, and it doesn’t sound like EA’s olive branch is working:

Jeff (who received a $40 credit from Amazon):

Some of them are very recent releases but I find it funny they included SimCity 4 – a 10 year old game. I’ll probably end up redeeming the most expensive game to hurt ea in the pocket. After all, with the amazon credits I got, the game cost me 19.99, and it’s unfair to Amazon they’re giving me credits for someone else’s screwup. So therefore, I’m gonna pick the most expensive game to hurt ea in the pocket.


I consider this just one more FU from EA. Most of these are ‘shooter’ games that I have no interest in. SimCity is a simulation type game and the only simulation game on the list is SimCity 4! I already have that game. What I want is my money back on the crappy game they sold us. SimCity is so bug-ridden that it is just not fun to play. I’ve started three cities in the game and all of them have been rolled-back losing hours of game play. What fun is that?


My take is this: promising a free game and them offering up a bunch of old, cheap titles is a bit of an insult – I’ll admit, I was expecting more. That being said, SimCity has been much more stable and I have been very much enjoying it. I do think that those who pre-ordered and waited months for the release date should get some higher level of compensation.


Yeah… “Meh” pretty much says it. The part that really stuck with me, though, is that their email thanks us for “sticking with them.” As opposed to what? You won’t give me my money back, so it’s not like you’re offering me another option. Ultimately the free game won’t change my decision to boycott EA.


As for the free game, NO. Just too little too late. Why would I accept a free game from EA, when I already know what their track record is. If I wanted to play any of those games, I would have purchased them in the first place. It’s like getting mugged, and then the mugger offers to buy you a beer afterwards, to make up for the black eye.


The game selection is actually surprisingly good – I didn’t expect any higher-dollar games to make the list. However, none of the games offered appeal to me. I think it’s pretty silly of EA to choose a limited offering to compensate people for a muck-up they’ve openly admitted to – I can’t imagine many current SimCity patrons trust EA’s judgement at this point. The SimCity Deluxe offering gave me the most guffaw for my buck – when Prius brakes began failing, no Prius drivers asked Toyota for a free leather seat upgrade. Why the heck would I want free DLC for a game that’s not working for me in the first place?


I really just would have preferred $10-20 in future DLC content for SimCity. It’s the game I bought, and the game I will continue to play, so why isn’t that an option? I don’t want to play a ‘new’ game! Another option would have just been the ability to have a 2nd copy of SimCity. I’m sure many people out there have a friend who would love to play with them if it was free… I know a few friends who would love to pay but can’t afford it.

Let us know why or why not this works for you by sending us an email to tips@consumerist.com. We’ll update here accordingly.

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