This just in from our “You waited for a week before launch to tell us?!?” department:

EA announced via Facebook that the highly-anticipated Titanfall won’t be coming to South Africa. Before you think “Meh, I’ll just buy it through Origin then”, EA explicitly stated that it won’t be sold through Origin, either. So no boxed copies for Xbox 360 and PC, and no ability to bypass retail and download it directly from EA. Talk about sucky.

Here’s the official statement:

After conducting recent online tests for Titanfall, we found that the performance rates in South Africa were not as high as we need to guarantee a great experience, so we have decided not to release Titanfall in South Africa at this time.

The statement has inspired a torrent of indignation from local gaming press and gamers alike, with people like Gavin Mannion from Lazygamer and Tarryn van der Byl from NAG weighing in with comments like “Who performed these tests because the local media had no issues during the beta?” (Mannion) and “Did you ask the hundreds of local players who took part in the beta without problems, or simply make the decision on our behalf?” (van der Byl).

Even Internet Solutions has thrown their hat into the ring. David Hansen wrote “We (ISGaming) has hardware and have access to core internet connectivity. We have signed with EA before and are prepared to do it again. We really should have this game available in S.A. Even if it is just available on PC.”

Only one person defended the decision. A Facebook user calling himself Robert Infy Hart wrote the following observation that essentially sums up the arguments for not bringing Titanfall to SA. Rather insightfully, I might add, particularly with the point that had EA gone ahead with Titanfall and its performance wasn’t up to par, all hell would have probably broken loose.

This is an admirable decision to be very honest. EA know that Titanfall will not play up to our standards and so instead of taking our money dishonestly, they have been very honest and noble by deciding to rather not sell a turd, no matter how much we (right now) want that turd. 

I can bet you that all the people complaining now about this, could complain even more if the game was released and players had to play with lag. 

I recall an article Gavin Mannion did recently about how broken Battlefield 4 still is and netcode is probably the games most complained about issue – AND THATS WITH LOCAL SERVERS! How can we as users be so hypocritical that we are absolutely not fine with BF4 local Lag, but we have “had no issues” with a 10X more laggy Titanfall? Seems to be like we all suffer from selective memory syndrome. 

Give EA a break… they made a respectable and honorable decision to protect their customers by deciding not to sell them an inferior product.

Other gamers are upset that they’ve preordered the game and thus have already forked over money for it, and are now saddled with trying to get that money back from retailers. Nick de Bruyne, former editor of Lazygamer, is one of them.

My own time with the Titanfall beta left me with very good impressions of the game, including latency that was a little high but not high enough to hamper my enjoyment of the game. This news comes as a huge surprise.

How do you feel about it? Are you disappointed? Did you preorder the game, and did you book next Friday off in anticipation of playing? Let us know in the comments.