Eerily similar to getting Samsunged, iPad-owning Tetris fans got EA'd today. iPhone Tetris fans will know this song and dance all too well, as EA pulled it on them late last year. In a nutshell, the Tetris for iPad that you may know, love, and already own now ceases to exist. EA pulled it off the App Store to make room for the "new and improved" Tetris for iPad.

What's new with this version of the game? A whole hell of a lot of in-app purchase, extending as far as monthly and yearly memberships to the T-Club, which will get you a 15% bonus on top of the lines and T-Coins (the game's consumable currency) that you earn by playing. Oh, EA's Origin has also been shoehorned in.

The sad part is that the Retina-ready graphics in this new Tetris look great on the new iPad, and the addition of the "one touch" control method make the game a lot more fun to play. But, again, much like the iPhone version, it makes absolutely no sense why this couldn't have been an update to the existing game that everyone already paid anywhere between 99¢ and $7.99 for.

It's really hard to get behind EA as a developer or publisher on the App Store when they're more than willing to pull these kind of hijinks. It's one thing to submit new users to a bevy of IAP options, but by pulling the old game from the store entirely, if you lose the original Tetris .ipa file for any number of reasons, getting the game again is going to set you back the full purchase price.

So, if you've got the original Tetris for iPad, make sure you keep it backed up in a safe place.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/BPDEBFKH4ICBIST64J3FGU62JE Jonathan

    I discovered a couple of weeks ago that you can still download previously purchased apps even if they have been removed from the app store. You have to manually find them in the purchased category, though. No search, you have to scroll back to find them. Even the older tetris is there. I was duped by this move on the iPhone. They really should have just given it another name.

    • artzor

      I confirm that Jonathan is telling truth.

    • Adam Gibson

      That doesn't help if you have a ton of purchased apps like me.  It would take forever to go back page at a time looking for an old app to retrieve without the search feature.

      • Haliaeetus

        If you pull the purchase history down, a search bar comes up letting you search your entire history for whatever you want.  (Although the iPad only apps are hidden if you are looking at your history from your iPhone/iPod.)

      • http://twitter.com/putermcgee putermcgee

        i'm not sure about this. i just tried searching fro two pulled apps (imame and snapture), and got no results.

      • mclifford82

        It actually does still help, as you could do it, but you'd just have to put a little more effort in.  Lazy ass.

    • http://twitter.com/ZildjianKX Jeff

      This isn't necessarily true if the developer tells Apple to pull the app.  I bought Critter Crunch when it first came out and it is totally gone from my purchase history.  It was re-released with a new publisher and only THAT version is available to re-download.  Backup your apps in case a publisher does something sucky.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5FLRQI2X2LU3IHMCG7HEAEFD5I Cat Astrophy

        Yeah. The original EDGE was not available by any means when they had to pull it during that moronic copyright suit.

  • asolja

    Lol no surprise at rip off EA,recently voted as the most disliked company in the USofA.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5FLRQI2X2LU3IHMCG7HEAEFD5I Cat Astrophy

    These guys just got rated one of the worst companies ever by the BBB and they aren't doing a thing to improve their reputation. It's like they are daring us to find a way to bankrupt them (i.e. resist buying their crap).

    • subshell001

      nothing can stop me from buying SimCity 5, unfortunately. it will be impossible to resist.

      • Taerdin

        Are you able to stand upright without a backbone?

      • http://twitter.com/thebenchwarmers BenchWarmers Clique

        LOL

      • subshell001

        Well actually, now that you mention it, my backbone does seem to work pretty well for standing, getting me to my job (where I earn money to buy what games I want), and for having regular sex with my girlfriend.
        I'm guessing you can't relate since you apparently are upset that I am going to give more of my money to EA for one of the most beloved franchises in the history of gaming.
        Now, go away troll. Find something better to do.

      • Taerdin

        Projecting much? It was just a little joke at the fact that apparently you compromise your views for the sake of a luxury item.

      • subshell001

        Sorry, I thought you were some 12 year old butt-hurt over EA charging money for something. I thought you were serious, not joking. I was trying to troll a troll.
        Anyway, how do you know what my views are? I actually don't care about what EA does (not saying they do not do asinine things with DLC). If they do something that I don't agree with, I don't buy it. It's all really that simple. I am a software developer and understand that it takes time and a lot of effort to make something. For example, who are we to say that this new TETRIS version "could have been an update"? It very well may be a complete re-write by an entirely separate team (the first version wasn't that good, and it's hard to make something bad good with just some updates. To me this new version looks like a complete overhaul). It's their choice to sell what they want and it's our choice to buy what we want. That's my view. I am not compromising anything. I love SimCity and have since the first version on DOS. I want to support MAXIS. I don't care about publishers, I care about developers. I want MAXIS to shine again! I would pay anything for a new SimAnt. Just sayin'.

      • Taerdin

         The part where you said nothing can stop you from buying it kind of made it seem like nothing would stop you from buying it, including compromising your views regardless of what they are :P

      • subshell001

        Ah, I see. That was really in response to the original poster when he said "resist buying their crap." I was merely saying I cannot resist SimCity 5 whether or not I have reason to.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5FLRQI2X2LU3IHMCG7HEAEFD5I Cat Astrophy

        subshell001, what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this section is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no likes, and may God have mercy on your soul.

      • subshell001

        I'm tempted to like that for quoting "Billy Madison"

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5FLRQI2X2LU3IHMCG7HEAEFD5I Cat Astrophy

        You are definitely insecure if you brought up something absolutely no one asked about (sex with your girlfriend). I'm not surprised at all that you would have the tenacity of tissue paper.

      • subshell001

        It was a joke about having a backbone that works perfectly well. Like I said, I was trying to troll a troll (I was assuming that trolls are sexually frustrated and just like to take it out on the internet). Spare me your witless psychoanalysis, professor.

      • mclifford82

        You are one judgmental prick, aren't you?  Holy crap, give it a rest.

      • http://profiles.google.com/fleshman1992 Laszlo Tuss

        I will get its torrent as son as possible too.

  • Tyler Piderit

    God EA is such a toolbag company. I mean really? REALLY??

    This video always gets me hatin'

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ZR6-u8OIJTE

    EA. You suck.

  • MadMilkMan

    EA is a greedy company, I'd rather pay a higher price for the game then to be bugged by iAP.. And what makes it worse is they don't ask you once or twice every so often, its laid out on the screen so you accidentally hit the buy button, or they'll ask you every time you fail to buy shit.. I love The Oregon Trail, and they updated it with iAP and now it's deleted from my phone... Very sad..

    • Disulfate

      Speaking of higher price... wasn't the original iOS Tetris originally $9.99?

  • Collin Burton

    "EA" : formerly "Electronic Arts", now "Evil A-holes". I, too, dropped Oregon Trails after they IAPd the hell out of it. Luckily I never bought Tetris for the iPad.

  • http://twitter.com/BigLord Filipe Barreiros

    Whoa. It's like they LIKE their reputation, of being one of the worst companies ever. DAMAGE CONTROL, PEOPLE! Do they have monkeys running the PR section of the company?...

  • http://twitter.com/drelbs drelbs

    Hehe, what do you expect from the company that gave out fee copies of "Tetris." in Starbucks, complete with NEW plastered on the logo that just happened to download the "old" version from the App Store! (Shouldn't complain too much, it's in many ways the better version...)

  • B30 B30

    I always thought that "EA" stands for "Extremley Avaricious", or am I wrong!?! ;)

    • AcneVulgaris

      Electronic Avarice, perhaps?

  • Adams Immersive

    The original is really good; I’ll be hanging onto it for sure. And steering clear of IAP. (One of many EA transgressions, starting with the iPhone and iPad Scrabble apps being so different—in ways that really hurt the iPad version!)

  • http://twitter.com/ChristAlexander Christopher Alexande

    EA = Electronic Assholes

  • Graysmith

    This sounds like a lawsuit needing to happen. There has also got to be something in Apple's rules that prohibit a seller from pulling an app and then re-uploading a newer version of the same game/app that everyone would have to re-purchase. That's just fraudulent behavior, plain and simple.

    If they don't have any such rules, what would stop any developer from doing this with every single new version of their game? Imagine having to re-purchase Angry Birds with every update? No, I can't imagine Apple don't have some kind of safeguards against sellers pulling stunts like that.

    • Collin Burton

      They don't have anything in place to stop a developer from taking a "paid for" app, loading it with IAP in a future update, and then switching to the Free to Play model, screwing everybody that already gave them money for the app. 

      Why would they have anything in place to stop a dev from dropping support for/removing an app and uploading a new app with IAP in its place? Personally, I feel doing that is a bit more honest.

      At least with the second, I wouldn't have to keep a close eye on all of my updates to make sure I'm not downgraded at some point (To-Fu 1 & 2, and what almost happened with Dark Meadow spring immediately to mind, but there have been many others).

  • Ruff Draft

    IN-APP-PURCHASES are the WORST thing EVER introduced by Apple. 

    It's a way for Developers to take advantage of people's need to succeed and takes away any possible joy of gaming where someone who has put less time in than you can absolutely cane you. Ridiculous and against gaming as a lifestyle, IMO. 

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5FLRQI2X2LU3IHMCG7HEAEFD5I Cat Astrophy

      Actually IAP would have been great if it was done right. The app store is flooded with "Lite" and full price apps. All apps should be free with an IAP to buy the full version. Gives everyone a chance to demo w/o duplicates of tons of apps in the store. DLC in gaming should be appearance based things only and new content not found in the app data (also new content should not be Day 1 DLC, otherwise it looks suspiciously like content witheld for DLC money).

      • Ruff Draft

        There's no actually about your response though as you completely agree with me, Apple gave this as a way for Devs to screw us. If Apple cared about the consumer being screwed, IAPs would have been pulled a long time ago. It's like your own consumer arcade where you pump money into the machine. 

        As customers on the app-store are being led down the plank each and everytime we sink money on some developers. It's what makes me even ponder getting a PS Vita as at least then you know you're getting a well produced game by a big company that isn't going to shower you with IAP. People say that we're different consumers to the big brand gaming devices, but some DLC is close to the price of a full game on a console - just for some credits to unlock a sword LOL (Infinity Blade II I'm looking at you). There's nothing suspicious about it either, the Devs are openly showing you that DLC is what they want on this free-to-play model and we just openly continue to sink money as customers (I have on Ticket to Ride for instance, but not very often; the way other free-to-play games are, I'd assume that millions are dropping money on them). 

      • subshell001

        How can you just ignore the fact that there are plenty of games on the App Store that do exactly what you are saying? Sure, many developers/publishers are quite evil about this, but it's not like the IAP system is broken, nor is iOS the only platform with micro-transactions. If a developer is evil and wants to nickel & dime you, then you have a choice to make: give them money, don't give them money, or just don't play the game.

        I agree with you on what you are saying, but the fact that plenty of developers do just that already negates your comment on IAP being "done right." You can't blame the system for everything.

      • Ruff Draft

        In all reality, like you, I come from the perspective of a SNES consumer. I used to buy cartridges for £40 when they came out as a kid. I'd take them home, take out the box and would play them for weeks, solidly. There were few errors in the game or faults. They were perfectly developed and tested at least, to a very high level. 

        My problem with in-app purchases, the vast majority are tiny upgrades that should just be freedbies for the new consumers to be tempted into buying or they are simply a way for the rich to progress further. This results in emptiness for them (usually), as they'll look back and think, well… I did it but it cost me a lot of money and doesn't mean I have much skill. Or it results in the people who are unwilling to play just brushing aside a game they have already paid for. In some cases, this game can cost $5 from the get-go. Like it or not, Global Leaderboards are a huge way of making your game more exciting, but they're usually a waste of time now.

        There aren't plenty of games that do it properly if many developers/publishers are quite evil lol. Let's just face it, because the asking price is lower than your average handheld game on Nintendo/Sony handheld's, we get ripped off. Fact is though, and this is a big fact, the games on those platforms (for the most part with the exception of Space Miner and around ten others of my hundreds of apps), are worthy of a handheld game for one of the two other handheld's that Apple are competing with.

        My problem with Apple is that they are openly looking towards Epic Games for their production values, yet Epic Games really think that it's worthwhile charging the unbelievable prices that they do for in-app purchases. Apple shouldn't be supporting developers such as this, IMO. Sure, the graphics that they put out there are some of the best quality that we can find on iOS. But they're making games that enable the rich to reign high for a price. That's not what gaming is, that's just another form of social divide that spoils the game for a huge amount of consumers. 

        I take on your comments wholeheartedly, I'm a huge fan of iOS. But after spending as much as I have, or as much as you likely have, I look at what I could have on Playstation Vita or DS and I honestly think… hmmm… for that amount of money I would have got a lot more bang for my buck. Lazy ports, shallow games and an all-round lack of love goes into a lot of iOS games. There are the great ones, sure, but they are few and far between. 

        Carcassonne is an amazing game, I'd happily pay for that game twice over. I bought those iAP and I wasn't disappointed. I understand why we must pay for such things if in real life, we would have to do the same. Ticket to Ride was similar, but I just thought it was a lot of additional downloading, all at a constant price - I'd have rather them done 4 extra boards for the extra $2 or whatever. But I agree, these aren't the Devs/Publishers that I'm complaining about, it's the others that drive me nuts. 

        And do you know why it's not okay to just 'choose whether to get the iAP purchases and just decide not to play the game? 'Cos I already sunk money in the first place and these are additional costs. The whole point of global leaderboards then are pointless and the game IMO, sucks from that point forward - refund? Oh yeah, we can't get them. 

        I'm not upset, I love iOS. I'm here on an iOS board because I do really enjoy the platform. I'm just saying that for the most part, if you sink based on reviews here or on the AppStore, then you'll largely become frustrated that some of the games are lack-lustre and you can't get your money back.

        I agree with you, Tilt-to-Live HD is definitely the business model forward and companies should be forced by Apple into doing the same. The problem is that the quality of games would mean that a large majority wouldn't sell much at all. Bad for Apple, bad for Devs.

    • subshell001

      It's only evil if the developer is evil. Apple did not make Farmville, nor did they tell Developers what to do with IAP. Nor was iOS the first platform that allowed such transactions. The reason why there are so many games that have these kinds of business models is because they work, and people are willing to spend money. Don't like it, don't play it.

      I liked being able to test out Tilt-to-Live HD before buying it by unlocking with IAP. I like that I could buy expansions for my Carcassonne game to match what is available in the print version. Or in Pinball Arcade, being able to buy the tables that I want. These are examples of developers doing IAP right.
      I don't understand why you are so upset, though. Just don't play games that have these kinds of business models. I don't cry myself to sleep about little children "caning me" because they spend all their parents money on IAP to get them ahead because I specifically don't play those games. Voila, problem solved.

    • theundertow

      I think it was Microsoft that started IAP with Xbox Live Mirco Transactions (in addition to paying a service fee for bleeping Live).

  • JCat_NY

    EA you mofos - you turned our beloved Theme Park into a carnival for suckers and the once classic Tetris has now gone all corporate. I hope this backfires at some point. IAP: The herpes of the ios game industry.

  • http://twitter.com/putermcgee putermcgee

    i have a question regarding 'backing up' your .ipa's. i know how to get to them, and i know how to save them somewhere else (like on an external disk). what i don't know about is restoring the backup.

    let's say i backed up this tetris .ipa, then got the update. to go back to the old version, do i just have to drag the old .ipa into my itunes and it replaces the new one?

  • Thom Denick

    I just checked my own app which I "Developer Rejected" last year because I'm re-releasing with a Publisher, and it was indeed in my history.  That means essentially there's no way for me to permanently pull an app from that list once users have downloaded it. (Not that I'd want to, that'd be pretty shitty, EA on the other hand...)

    It did not come up when I used the search function, I had to scroll back to the date I originally downloaded the app from the store.

    I suspect with something like iMame, Apple puts a special flag on it that prevents all future downloads since they believe it violates their TOS.

  • Gemutlichkeit

    Electronic Arts. It sure is an art form to be this greedy.

  • countermind

    EA has been screwing people ever since they got exclusive NFL rights back when 2K games actually made a better NFL sim than Madden, back in '05. Screw you EA. I will never purchase a title that is published by EA again, even if it developed by Bioware or any other awesome developer.

    • MadMilkMan

      I was a fan of NFL 2k5 myself..

  • http://twitter.com/Flitzefisch Jens Krebs

    I deleted the former excellent "Dead Space" after the last update which introduced some in-app-purchases. Same goes for one of my all-time-favourites "Plants vs. Zombies" which started asking for money (on top of th purchase price off course) after PopCap had been bought by EA. Hate those guys — in my opinion they completely misunderstand what and how IAP is intended to work (extra content, new levels, additional functions).

    • phil lan

      As for the whole EA and eventual destruction of PopCap here's my 2 cents: PopCap have been given 3 years to hit impossible targets, to access the rest of their buy out money.
       profit Year 1 120 MIL
       profit Year 2 160 MIL
       profit Year 3 320 MIL

       Last year was the first time that PopCap was in the red in it's history, missing there 4th quarterly target set by EA by 75%, 10's of millions. Basically PopCap is now a bloated EA vassal with no new IP released by the Studio since Plants Vs Zombies which was 3 years ago. They're finished and will be massively downsized once the 3 year probation period is over. That co-founder doesn't care what EA do to PopCap, he's already had his payday and it sitting in his gold throne while EA absorbs and waters down another company.

  • http://twitter.com/borgqueenx borgqueenx

    Omg what a crap company...

  • JJE McManus

    No more buying Ea games for any of my family's iOS devices. Kaput, finished, over.
    If we all push back hard but respectfully against this glut of IAP we can and will change Apple's mind and those of developers.

  • whatshit

    is this even legal? i mean it doesnt happen anywhere else in life. imagine buying new shoes and the company removing one of them from your feet a few weeks later. it would highly illegal. how so is it not on the app store.?  stupid comparison maybe but...

    you're still paying with real money, often a recorded card transaction, for something that then the seller takes away at a later date without warning or reason. How can that be right or legal?

  • http://twitter.com/crunchewy Crunchewy

    What happens if a pulled app had  IAPs that you paid for, then later you reinstall the app and try to restore those IAPs? Are you screwed?

  • Lamar Taylor

    EA has just lost me as a customer on iOS. This company is just too damn greedy and tries in every way to squeeze every penny they can out of their customers.

    The bad part is EA makes too many games that get plenty of hype but are filled with glitches and crashes. Madden is the same game every year with only roster updates. I haven't bought Madden in over 3 years and don't miss it.

  • offkingjack

    So What?  There's plenty of freeware Tetris games and I'm sure one will show up for iPads and iPhones if it hasn't already.  Just get the free ones, don't give EA a penny.

    Hold The Wallet.