EA Comes Back to Steam with New Games

By Super Searcher

Electronic Arts (EA) is once again going to be publishing new games on Valve’s Steam platform! Here is the press release:

Electronic Arts and Valve have partnered to put EA games into the hands of the players on Steam. Starting next spring, EA Access—our ever-growing subscription service powered by great games and member benefits—will be making its way to Steam. EA Access is the first and only gaming subscription service available on Steam, and the fourth platform featuring an EA subscription.

The partnership kicks off with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order™ launching on November 15—and available for pre-order today. In the coming months, players on Steam will also be able to play other major titles like The Sims™ 4 and Unravel Two. Multiplayer games—like Apex Legends™, FIFA 20, and Battlefield™ V—will become available next year, and players on both Origin and Steam will have the ability to play together.

A library of titles awaits you in The Vault, but beyond the games themselves, EA Access enhances your gaming experience with a medley of rewards. Get the red-carpet treatment with exclusive catalog-wide discounts, and in-game member benefits for some of our biggest franchises.

Keep an eye out for more news and updates on this partnership in the coming weeks and months!

Since 2012, EA has been focused on Origin as its primary (and in most cases exclusive) sales channel. So why would they take their games off Steam only to put them back on again? There are probably a few reasons for EA’s decision.

First, according to Ars Technica, Valve recently started giving slightly better terms (20-25% cut, rather than 30%) to the bigger game developers (starting at $10M in sales). This would definitely benefit EA. Secondly, EA may have been seeing their sales lag behind the rest of the industry because a lot of people don’t want to use EA’s Origin. Third, the news comes amid Valve’s battle with the Epic Games Store, which is now a major contender. I’m sure that, too, had something to do with Valve being more eager to make a deal with EA.

EA’s announcement seems to focus on their EA Access program. But in the near future we should be able to buy new EA games through Steam once again, and start them directly from Valve’s launcher.

For the time being, though, you won’t be able to launch games you bought on Origin through Steam. That may change eventually, as Mike Blank, EA’s senior vice president of player networks, told Engadget the “relationship between Steam and Valve is evolving.” The executive also said EA is open to new partnerships that let people play games on different platforms.

Engadget reported the following from EA: “We are working with Valve and Steam to connect our friends lists together more effectively, so that you can play together across multiplayer games, regardless of which platform you’re choosing to play the game on.”

Ideally, we should have something like Movies Anywhere for games so purchases aren’t tied to one storefront. No matter where you buy your favorite movies, Movies Anywhere lets you bring them together in one app. This is beneficial both for competition and safeguarding your purchase if one service goes out of business. Comparatively, needing to install five different game store apps seems pretty lame.

I guess the problem is with the hardware, though. Movies are just a file, so all the program has to do is decode the file which is relatively simple compared to games. Games have to be purposely built for the operating system they’re running on. Build a game for Android, and you can’t run it on iOS. Make a game that runs on PC, and it won’t run on a PS4 or Xbox without some changes.

That’s not to say it’s impossible. Microsoft came up with the Xbox Play Anywhere service, which lets you play the same games on PC and on Xbox. This tells me the industry is heading that way, if only they can figure out how to make it work.

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