Madden NFL 21's Confusing Xbox Series X Upgrade Offer Expanded
EA has extended its cross-generation upgrade offer for Madden NFL 21, following feedback from fans about the policy. While the company originally put narrow time restrictions on the offer–creating some confusion with Microsoft’s Smart Delivery in the process–it has now expanded the time period significantly.
Madden NFL 21 will let you upgrade for free from Xbox One to the Xbox Series X version, but the original press release said you would need to buy the game by the end of this year, and then upgrade to the Series X by March 31, 2021. This came after EA CFO Blake Jorgensen remarked on free next-gen upgrades during an earnings call, so the same offer will likely extend to PS4 and PS5 versions.
Now, however, the company has extended the offer with a statement on its Next Level website (via Polygon). It’s calling the program “Dual Entitlement” and will extend it through the release of Madden NFL 22. That means instead of needing to upgrade by next March, you’ll be able to make the switch anytime before the next game launches in the fall of 2021.
EA is said to have made the change quietly earlier this week. That means it was probably to be announced during the Madden NFL 21 reveal event planned for June 1, but that was pushed back due to ongoing racial justice protests. Similarly, EA has delayed its EA Play event originally scheduled for next week. It will now take place June 18. EA has also offered a statement of solidarity and a monetary and volunteerism donation to the protests.
The “Dual Entitlement” program was announced during an Inside Xbox event, in which many of the games shown were advertised to support Smart Delivery. That program, being spearheaded by Microsoft, promises to download the appropriate version of software for whatever hardware you’re using, but publishers have to opt-in. EA’s announcement created some confusion, appearing very similar to Smart Delivery but not being part of the upgrade program.
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