EA ends PC store exclusivity with ‘Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order’ (VIDEO) | Tech/Gadgets


Video game publishers are changing strategy to better emphasise their own game subscription services. ― Picture courtesy of Respawn Entertainment/Electronic Arts via AFP
Video game publishers are changing strategy to better emphasise their own game subscription services. ― Picture courtesy of Respawn Entertainment/Electronic Arts via AFP

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct 31 ― Already well-anticipated thanks to its high profile licence and apparent quality experienced in preview sessions, the PC version of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order also marks the start of a new era for its publisher, which is to resume selling games on Steam as well as through its own Origin platform.

Electronic Arts will resume selling its catalog of Mac and PC games through Steam after eight years of exclusivity to its own digitl store and online service, Origin.

Starting with November 15th’s Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, newer Electronic Arts games will become available to purchase via Steam.

As with Fallen Order, those games are expected to start up EA’s computer gaming software app, Origin, when played throgh Steam.

Over the next few months, EA’s The Sims 4 and Unravel Two will be made available on Steam, with Apex Legends, FIFA 20 and Battlefield V targeting 2020.

In addition, EA’s subscription service EA Access will be sold through Steam as well as Origin starting in northern Spring 2020.

EA Access had been offered to Xbox owners since 2014, in co-operation with Xbox division owner Microsoft. Only in July 2019 did it become available on Sony’s PlayStation.

The approach appears to overlap with that of Microsoft, which has its own digital storefront and gaming network in the Xbox Games Store and Xbox Live.

Microsoft has likewise begun making its tentpole releases available on other PC retail platforms: September’s Gears 5 launched through the Xbox Store and Steam, while October’s The Outer Worlds debuted on both the Xbox Store and the Epic Game Store.

In Microsoft’s case, selling these significant releases as standalone purchases has served to underline the value offered by another Xbox product, the Xbox Game Pass for PC and console.

It offers subscribers access to a growing library of games for a fraction of the price, including those big Microsoft studio launches like Gears 5 and The Outer Worlds.

Timing its re-entry to the Steam ecosystem with wider availability of the EA Access programme could allow Electronic Arts to do the same.

Similarly, French-headquartered group Ubisoft has its own software, online storefront, and account network called UPlay, while continuing to sell games through Steam and elsewhere.

In those cases, it has made games ultimately reliant upon UPlay, either by booting up the client from Steam, or by integrating it into Epic Game Store technology.

Ubisoft launched its UPlay+ game library subscription scheme in September. ― AFP-Relaxnews



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