Let's hope this situation gets resolved real quick because it could easily escalate into something ugly, but we've been notified by one of our readers that EA's latest NHL 13 is forcing players to spend real cash to compensate for an in-game currency glitch, which is happening to both PS3 and Xbox 360 gamers. Yeah, that's EA for you. And if you think this is some isolated case, think again.
Across forum boards, chat rooms and social networks spread over the internet the problem is consistently coming up, whether it be on Gamefaqs, Team Xbox, or EA's own forum boards, the same problem keeps popping up: Players aren't earning the proper in-game currency to keep their player contracts in the Hockey Ultimate Team mode, thus resulting in them having to pay real money via microtransactions in order to keep playing with their virtual team. Is this really a glitch, or is it a fancy move by EA to monetarily scalp players with something they thought would be overlooked?
The EA forum board for NHL 13 is ripe with complaints about the issue and while some of the packs sell for as little as a $1.75 or 112 MSP, they can scale to burn a hole in your wallet pretty quickly if you have to continually spend money on the microtransactions to keep playing the game.
According to Jeff Lively, one of the NHL 13 gamers who ran into the bug, he recounts that...
The "HUT" [Hockey Ultimate Team] game mode has become unplayable for me without spending real money. Each game played is supposed to give you "pucks" to spend on virtual cards. Each player card has a contract, when the contract runs out you must give them a new one. I'm currently unable to earn pucks through playing games due to a bug in EA's game (surprised?) and in addition to that my wins don't count, only my losses (insult to injury).
Jeff is not alone in his predicament, as other users have lamented the same situation: in order to keep playing they have to keep spending money due to the bug that prevents them from earning in-game currency. In this regards, the fun-factors are being held hostage by a bug that forces you to spend money. How novel.
If you still think this isn't much of an issue, just check out more threads about the bug here, here and here...oh yeah, and here and here as well.
As noted in some threads, a pseudo-solution is to wipe your game data and start from scratch. You can also clear out your cache, which is a common solution after starting a new game where saved data may have been corrupted. However, according to Lively and other NHL 13 users, the clear-the-cache method didn't quite pan out so well, with Jeff saying...
I tried again to delete all my game files and to clear my cache and nothing.. Problem is obviously on their end, can't believe they let this stuff happen and turn the mode into pay to play.
We've recently reached out to Electronic Arts about the problem but have yet to receive a response. Unlike the Scrabble incident, this bug here is encouraging die-hard fans into a monetary vice grip, otherwise they can't play the way they want. And while EA was quick to address the issues with Scrabble, I get the feeling we probably won't see a response from them until they ready themselves to roll out a patch for users.
We'll keep you posted on any updates about the issue and if you've encountered the bug be sure to let us or EA know to keep the pressure on them to work on a fix. Remember, you paid for a product expecting it to work as advertised, not become a money pit due to a potential (intentional?) oversight.