A Sony exclusive joins the ranks of the online pass.
SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs released today for the PlayStation 3. Sony is now following the path set by companies like EA and THQ. Developed by Zipper Interactive, the game includes its own version of the online pass found in many other games on the market. The pass is called “SOCOM Pro” and is included with new copies of SOCOM 4.
Jeremy Dunham, Sr. Community Manager for Zipper Interactive, revealed on the official PlayStation Blog that SOCOM Pro gives players access to the following:
- exclusive game updates to SOCOM Pro Custom Ranked Games
- exclusive game modes
- two guns: M-16 and AK-47
- future Pro exclusive multiplayer maps
- future Pro add-ons to co-op mode
- dedicated online leaderboards
Little was known or publicized about SOCOM Pro before the game’s release. “We’ve been keeping a secret here at Zipper Interactive – a hush-hush special bonus that players who purchase new copies of SOCOM 4: U.S. Navy SEALs are entitled to the moment they first play the game,” said Dunham.
Currently it’s unclear whether players will be locked out of general game updates in the future if they don’t have SOCOM Pro. SOCOM 4 is the first Sony Computer Entertainment published PS3 exclusive to implement such a system.
Those who buy the game used or don’t have the code can buy the SOCOM Pro pass for $14.99 on the PlayStation Store.
Electronic Arts spearheaded a similar system called “Project Ten Dollar” back in 2010 with popular titles like Mass Effect 2 and its Cerberus Network and VIP access for Battlefield: Bad Company 2. The idea was to give people a reason to buy new copies by offering them a code to access free downloadable content like extra weapons, side missions, and map packs.
After several months, Project Ten Dollar quickly evolved into the Online Pass. It was first seen in EA Sports games and blocked out the multiplayer modes for those who didn’t have the Online Pass. Later on the multiplayer modes in EA games like Need for Speed Hot Pursuit and Dead Space 2 were inaccessible without the Online Pass. The Online Pass could be purchased for $9.99 on the PlayStation Store or 800 Microsoft Points on the Xbox Live Marketplace.
As of now, players will still be able to use all of SOCOM 4’s basic online multiplayer features without SOCOM Pro. SOCOM Pro doesn’t affect the single player campaign besides the ability to use the bonus weapons in that mode. SOCOM 4 retails for $59.99.
Photo by PlayStation Blog