Wednesday, July 27, 2011

EA Not Dropping Support for Steam

EA Origin

Many of you in the gaming community have probably already heard of, or become a part of, EA's new game download service known as Origin. Origin works the same way as the extremely popular download service Steam does, allowing users to purchase game titles online and download them instantly to their PCs without ever having to leave the house. You don't have any discs to worry about scratching or losing and no game box to go out and pick up, making acquiring the newest PC games that much easier.

However, with the introduction of Origin, many gamers began to worry about EA dropping support for Steam. Not too long after Origin was announced, Crysis 2 was pulled from Steam shelves, becoming unavailable to download. Many people were wondering if this would become a mainstay for EA and asked if the company would be pulling all EA games off of the service in an attempt to get gamers to use Origin.

However, in a recent investor call, CEO of Electronic Arts John Riccitiello bragged about the amazingness of Origin and pointed out the fact that the margins, which is the amount of money EA makes, on each game sale are 100% if the game is bought through Origin. But that's obvious. However, despite being head over heels for Origin, Riccitiello did make it clear that EA games would continue to become available on Steam and other download services.

According to Riccitiello, "We are pushing EA content on any and every platform we can. We love what we're getting with Origin, but we are very keen to get our content distributed anywhere where gamers are."

However, that does not mean that every single EA game will be available on these other services. One such game, in addition to Crysis 2, is Dragon Age 2. This game has apparently been pulled from Steam. As of right now, it is impossible to acquire the game from Steam, though it is unclear if that will change in the future. However, it does seem that the reason for the game's absence is not a conflict with Origin.

According to sources gathered from Destructoid, the game may have been pulled as a result of the recently launched "Legacy" DLC. According to Destructoid, "Our sources indicate that EA was offering the content by way of an in-game store, which may be a violation of the latest version of Steam's terms of service. If this is the case, EA and BioWare would have to re-write parts of the game software just for Steam, simply to conform with Valve's standards. It's possible that EA's refusal to do so may have led to Valve yanking the title entirely."

I am a user of both Steam and Origin and I can tell you that both sites are very well done. The one thing Steam has going for it is that it offers more than just EA games, whereas Origin only releases games made by EA and partner studios. If you are a fan of anything EA makes and you much prefer digital downloads, I suggest you get in on Origin, otherwise you may be left out of some really great games.

Source: G4 - Electronic Arts Games Will Continue to Appear On Steam

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