Home Gaming No refund for copies of SimCity bought on Origin

No refund for copies of SimCity bought on Origin

2 min read


SimCity launches today! A game where you get to build metropolises, grow a city and then unleash all manner of hell on it. Well, it’s what I would do at least, seeing as how I still regularly brick up my Sims in their homes and leave them to die a horrible death. The thing is, SimCity has had a very rocky launch so far, as the always-online game has been hit with an Error 37 level of denied service and crammed servers. A lot of folks have thrown their hands in the air and taken back their game copy to get a refund. It’s just a pity that anyone who bought the game on Origin, is pretty much screwed.

It’s been a bad time for EA so far. Dead Space has devolved into an angry war of words, and SimCity is forcing plenty of players to sit down and wait to have an opportunity to play a game that they bought, of up to half an hour at a time. Or risk getting banned. On Tuesday, EA went onto their forums to say: “If you regrettably feel that we let you down, you can of course request a refund for your order at [Origin’s “contact us” page], though we’re currently still in the process of resolving this issue.”

Since then though as VG247 discovered, that comment has been removed. That doesn’t mean that Origin adopters of the game won’t be able to get a refund, but when the terms of service include phrases such as “special mitigating services”, you know that it’s going to be an uphill battle all the way. With more and more PC gamers getting rightfully pissed off,

Maxis general manager Lucy Bradshaw issued the following statement to Kotaku:

Thousands of players across the world are playing and having a good experience – in fact, more than 700,000 cities have been built by our players in just 24 hours. But many are experiencing server instability and consequently, the rollout in North America has been challenging. It’s also now evident that players across Europe and Asia are experiencing the same frustration.

Our priority now is to quickly and dramatically increase the number and stability of our servers and, with that, the number of players who can simultaneously access the game. We added servers today, and there will be several more added over the weekend. We’re working as hard as possible to make sure everyone gets to experience the amazing game we built in SimCity.

And don’t expect any mercy this side either for the game. With the rest of Europe going online to play the game today, us included, those servers are going to get full real quickly. And thanks to a culture of piracy, we all know just how impossible it is to return a PC game that isn’t exactly operating at maximum capacity.

Might be worth waiting this storm out, until EA gets their act together. Welcome to the wonderful world of always online!

Last Updated: March 8, 2013


  1. No soup for you!


  2. Haunted99

    March 8, 2013 at 09:52

    I’m glad I didn’t pre order the game.


  3. Sean Potgieter

    March 8, 2013 at 09:53

    Is it just me or do all these always-online games have major issues at launch nowadays?


    • Sir Rants-a-Lot Llew

      March 8, 2013 at 10:16

      Nope. Not the only one and until they learn that there MUST be an offline option this will always be an issue.

      You may only need X amount of server capacity to run all your projected gamers at once, but unfortunately that number is in all likelyhood doubled at launch as everyone is trying at the same time. Initial influx does not equal sustained numbers once gamers have settled in to normal routine. This is something they seem to be forgetting time and time again.


    • matthurstrsa

      March 8, 2013 at 10:50

      Nope, its everyone.


  4. DeathWish

    March 8, 2013 at 09:54

    FU#@%$#^$%$^%^%**%^*^%*^%^*^$^%%^K. Why release a game if they cannot handle the pressure. I’m one of the unlucky ones to have ordered on Origin, but I’m going to try the game tonight when I get home if it has completed downloading.


  5. Matewis Jubilai

    March 8, 2013 at 09:54

    Gaming is trying to go the way of the extroverts… Its used to be the way of the introverts…


  6. Sir Rants-a-Lot Llew

    March 8, 2013 at 09:56

    Why waste so much money on online servers anyway? Doesn’t it just increase your operational costs forcing you to need to sell more?

    No wonder they don’t want to give refunds. They can’t afford to lose out on the cash.

    Wish they would start realising that always online is a BAD idea. Why can’t they just make it as a value added option?

    Want to have single player offline? Great, here ya go. Want more of a challenge? Want to go head to head with others? Play together? Be connected? Sure we got that too.

    In the end what would happen is servers don’t get bogged down on launch causing issues like this because I can guarentee that a huge chunk of that traffic is from people who just simply want to play a game alone. If you didn’t have those guys clogging up the server then everything would be great.

    But they are forcing gamer’s hands. Eventually this model will come back to bite them all in the ass. It’s not going to end well.


    • Prolific

      March 8, 2013 at 10:05

      You’re on the money, so to speak, describing the utopia that we (the ones PAYING) want, and developers refuse to give. And then the studios are all up in arms when illegal servers/offline hacks appear. For the record, I don’t support piracy, but you can’t deny the relative ease associated with it (HINT HINT developers, this is what the public wants!). Of course, “always-online” is actually “real-time controllable DRM” in corporate speak, so why change?


      • Sir Rants-a-Lot Llew

        March 8, 2013 at 10:13

        Exactly. And it brings to mind 1 question:

        Is the damage to your company’s image and the smaller profits** made by this model really worth having your game protected this heavily against piracy?

        **I am guessing the profit margins are smaller because there are people who won’t/can’t buy it coz it’s online only and the servers must cost a crap load to maintain.


  7. Rowan Demmer

    March 8, 2013 at 10:01

    Canceld my pre-order when i read it was a always online game! PUNKS!


  8. Sir Captain Rincethis

    March 8, 2013 at 10:14

    They must fuck off. I will not ever buy anything with a ALWAYS ONLINE element, NEVER!


  9. Macethy

    March 8, 2013 at 10:18

    Welcome to the future guys, always online single player games.

    “Hey guys, I thought of a genius way to fight piracy. Let’s have always online single player games!”

    “But our servers can’t handle that load, especially on launch day!”

    “It’s fine! Players don’t mind waiting 4 days and 3 patches later before they play the game. It will be fine I’m telling you”.


  10. Purple_Dragon

    March 8, 2013 at 10:26

    Wow, talk about shafting your customers.

    So glad I didn’t buy SimCity, I was interested in it until I heard about always online required. I refuse to buy games that require always online. Fuck that shit.


    • Draco Lusus

      March 8, 2013 at 10:29

      After 2 weeks attempting to play Diablo 3 on a 3G connection, then getting ADSL just so I could have a solid 30mins session of gaming. I realised that I won’t ever do that shit again. Chasing a delusion is what it was.


  11. Uberutang

    March 8, 2013 at 10:26

    • Purple_Dragon

      March 8, 2013 at 10:29

      Brilliant brilliant!


  12. ElNicko

    March 8, 2013 at 10:47

    another case of WHY Piracy is increasing. Ho ho ho and bottle of Rum.


  13. matthurstrsa

    March 8, 2013 at 10:51

    I actually read on Reddit about a guy who quite easily got a refund, by being polite and patient. But this always online bullshit is ridiculous. So glad I never pre-ordered.


  14. Johan du Preez

    March 8, 2013 at 11:04

    lol so glad this is on my pirate list 🙂


  15. Brenzfontein

    March 8, 2013 at 12:03

    I just found this on the gamespot comments of the review, brilliant customer services.


    I will never buy an EA game or a single player game that requires to be permantly online to play, EA and this whole single player online ideaology needs to burn.


    • Purple_Dragon

      March 8, 2013 at 12:12

      I am still gobsmacked they want to ban you if you ask for a refund.


      • John John

        March 8, 2013 at 23:16

        The douchebags didn’t threaten that. Just as with STEAM, if you dispute a transaction with the bank, your account is auto banned.


  16. OVG

    March 8, 2013 at 16:45

    We all called this 5 months ago. I SAID FAIL FAIL FAIL FAIL FUCK OFF EA FUCK OFF EA

    5 months ago.


  17. Gary Fisher

    March 8, 2013 at 20:37

    I’ve decided to boycott SimCity – after the frustration I experienced with Diablo 3, I’m not willing to support a company the size of EA who can’t get their infrastructure in place to support their DRM. Personally, I’m not bothered about it always being online, but I do expect the with such a drastic DRM measure being taken, that the arrangements have been made to actually support the damned thing!


  18. Luke

    March 9, 2013 at 01:15

    Does this have any effect on other EA games and direct downloads from Origin? I just downloaded Sims 3 University and Its saying that I need to go to the launcher and update my game before I can install it and play! Every time I refresh my game updates all it says is “cannot connect to origin!” Thats annoying because I am actually connected to origin!


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