After teasing the news on Twitter earlier this week, EA announced this morning that it’s going to release its games on Steam again, starting with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order in November. EA stopped using Steam back in 2011 in favour of its own Origin platform, which currently exists as a game launcher on Windows and macOS.
"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,” EA announced today.
In addition to EA games coming to Steam, the publisher also announced today that its EA Access subscription service will also make its way to Valve’s digital distribution platform next spring. EA Access, which is already available on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, will be the first game subscription service available on Steam.
Speaking with The Verge, Mike Blank, senior vice president at EA, explained that EA Access on Steam will be different from EA’s existing Origin Access subscription service on PC, which includes EA games as well as titles from other publishers. “I would anticipate that the catalog of games you’ll see will be more akin to what you see on EA Access on Xbox or PlayStation,” said Blank, meaning that you can expect fewer games compared to what's on the Origin Access catalog.
Overall, it’s an interesting turn of events for EA, a publisher gamers love to hate for its overuse of micro-transactions and poor handling of developer talent such as BioWare. Now that EA is once again in good terms with Steam, it will be interesting to see if the company could eventually put its games on the Epic Games Store, which gives more revenue back to publishers compared to Valve. Blank said to The Verge that EA is “open to new partnerships,” though the company has nothing to announce as of today.