In Attempt to Curb Coin Selling, EA Sports Has Upset Fans of FIFA Ultimate Team

Posted March 11th, 2015 at 12:30 pm


Earlier this week EA Sports added the two new MLS franchises to FIFA 15. On the same day the company rolled out some significant and controversial changes to Ultimate Team. There are now “Price Ranges” on the Transfer Market. With values restricted the open Ebay-style auction system is no more. 

Reaction from fans of the mode – even those who play within the rules – has been heavily negative regarding the changes. One of the central ideas behind Ultimate Team is to buy low, sell high. That is no longer part of the formula for success in the team-building process.

The reason for EA to institute such a change is simple…they had to do something about “coin sellers”. People who sell their coins for actual money on sites like Ebay. The process of exchange involved the person who bought the coins listing a worthless card for the agreed-upon value and the person who was paid completing the transaction with that transfer. Because there is now both a floor and a ceiling to card values that can no longer be done.

There are some benefits of the Price Ranges however and EA made sure to state them in their initial release. They tend to apply more to the casual players of the mode or those just starting out. More reasonable prices means more players will be able to obtain the most desirable cards – those which were forever out of reach for most. Having a set price range also makes it easier for people to understand the value of each card. That all makes sense, but it won’t do any good for those who are deep in and just saw the value of their possessions drop dramatically.

EA instituted some changes going into FIFA 15 that were meant to curb coin-selling including banning players who were found to have bought or sold them. The company has had to deal with other issues in the past related to Ultimate Team most notably the theft of accounts through social engineering that were common with FIFA 12.

It’ll be interesting to see what if any impact this change has on how many people choose to play the mode and invest money in it. Many of the most dedicated players of the mode have expressed a belief this could be the downfall of it – or at least the beginning of its decline.