The Sims, FIFA, Battlefield and more will follow Jedi: Fallen Order when EA returns to Steam.
In 2011, EA released its own storefront, named Origin. It was to be the super publisher’s answer to Valve’s Steam store, allowing users to buy digital copies of EA games, but over the years, also to communicate with friends, play online multiplayer, stream to Twitch, and more.
And let’s be honest: EA probably more than saved money in so doing. Valve takes a 30% cut of sales to use its platform, and while the cost of developing and maintaining your own storefront will be enormous, over eight years? You can be sure that EA will have made more money – per sale, at least – than had they just sold on Steam.
But the times, and the tides, they are changing. Epic has entered the fray, offering developers and publishers 88% of sales revenue, meaning the Epic Games Store only takes a 12% cut for its service. And that includes Unreal Engine 4 licensing costs, which would cost another 5% on Steam. To compound the applecart upsetting, Epic is also offering large sums of upfront money for exclusivity on its store, including with big hitters like Ubisoft, Deep Silver, and Remedy.
We don’t get to peek behind the NDA curtain, but in order to maintain its status quo, we’d bet that Valve is offering more favourable revenue shares to publishers to try and keep the biggest games on Steam. Or in this case, to tempt those publishers back.
Last week, EA tweeted a video of a mug. That was it. Just a mug. With a hot drink in it. A mug with steam coming out of the top, if you like.
— Electronic Arts (@EA) October 25, 2019
And that sent the rumour mill ablaze. Then today, in an announcement on its site, EA confirmed the news that the mug tease alluded to: EA is bringing its games back to the Steam storefront.
The first (new) EA Steam game will be Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, the latest blockbuster set in
George Lucas’ Disney’s intergalactic empire. Jedi: Fallen Order launches on Steam on November 15 – day-and-date with other platforms, including Origin, which is presumably not going away any time soon – and players can pre-order it via Steam right now.
Other games confirmed to follow Jedi: Fallen Order to Steam include The Sims 4 – and all of the DLC that comes with it – and Unravel Two. Multiplayer games, including FIFA 20, Battlefield V, and Apex Legends, will come to Steam next year. When they do, EA will also open up multiplayer between Steam and Origin client players.
EA Access, the publisher’s subscription service that offers a library of games and (sometimes) early access to new releases, will also be available to Steam users in spring 2020.