EA will break with tradition when Syndicate launches later this month. EA Partners executive producer Jeff Gamon told Eurogamer that Starbreeze's reboot would ship without an online pass, in the hopes of lowering the barrier of entry for the game's multiplayer side.
"We want as little resistance or barriers to entry as possible," Gamon said. "The co-op is equal billing in this. We wanted everyone who owns a copy of the game to have access to the entire product." It's policy for EA to include an online pass in all of its games. Curiously, this policy does not always extend to EA Partners games like Crysis 2 and Portal 2, both of which shipped without online passes. Meanwhile, Bulletstorm required a pass for its online co-op mode.
"Under normal circumstances it would have had an online pass, but because it didn't have competitive multiplayer and because we wanted as many people as possible to be playing co-op, we got away with it," Gamon added. "Maybe another reason for not having the Online Pass is we were confident in the scope of the online game." Throughout the nine multiplayer maps, he says players can expect "a good six, seven hours" on a single playthrough. "That and the single-player campaign means hopefully we won't see much in the way of early second hand sales and rentals," Gamon concluded before absconding with Princess Zelda.