What just happened? Steam has not hosted any EA games since 2011, but that is about to change on November 15 when Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order launches worldwide. The publisher has struck a deal with Valve and will begin bringing games back to the competing digital storefront, starting with Jedi. Its Access subscription service will be on offer as well.
On Tuesday, Electronic Arts announced a new partnership with Valve to bring some of its games to Steam — confirming previous rumors. The publisher said its games would appear on the store beginning with the Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order launch on November 15. Pre-orders for the title are already up on Steam.
Following Jedi, EA will bring other games into the Steam stable, including The Sims 4 and Unraveled 2 before the end of the year, and Apex Legends, FIFA 20, and Battlefield V sometime in 2020.
“This is the start of an exciting partnership with Valve that will see us innovating for PC players around the world,” said EA’s CEO Andrew Wilson.
“We’re excited to partner with EA to not only bring their great games and subscription service to Steam, but also to open up our communities to each other in an unprecedented way that will benefit players and developers around the world.”
Additionally, the publisher will be bringing EA Access to Valve's customers as well. Membership includes discounts on full-game purchases, DLC, and “in-game” items. Subscribers also gain access to an extensive catalog of EA titles. However, it’s not likely to be as large as the encyclopedia of games to choose from on Origin.
The subscription service will most likely be similar to the console versions of Access. For comparison, subscribers on Xbox have a selection of about 80 EA games to play at their whim. PlayStation has even less choice at about 40. Origin Access meanwhile has over 200 titles.
“This is a good day for gamers,” said Valve co-founder and president Gabe Newell, “We’re excited to partner with EA to … bring their great games and subscription service to Steam.”
The company said that Steam and Origin Access players would have cross-play functionality, which makes sense considering both are PC-platformed.
“Through our subscription, great games, and more, we’re excited to bring players in the Steam and Origin communities together with access to the best games, whenever and wherever they want to play,” Wilson added.
This will be the first time EA has offered its games on Steam since Valve dropped Crysis 2 from the storefront in a 2011 business-terms dispute with the game’s developer Crytek. It appears the two giants of the industry have settled their differences, and EA is ready to go “where the gamers are.”
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