At least the new app isn’t called Visceral.
Electronic Arts has finally said goodbye to the ‘Origin’ branding of its Steam-competitor service and with it part of its history as it repositions for the coming generation. In its place, you can say hello to the mercifully named ‘EA Desktop app’.
The 2011-launched storefront was always quite unfortunately named. EA, which has a penchant for shutting down studios, disbanded Origin Systems in 2004 after cancelling numerous projects in previous years. Origin Systems was a genre pioneer responsible notably for the Ultima and Wing Commander series.
EA senior vice president Michael Blank said in an interview with GamesBeat: “It was less about the Origin name and more about how we are on a journey to offer players choice in how they choose to play,” adding that “perpetuating a variety of different brands” isn’t the right move for EA or its players.
This reflects how EA are now consolidating their branding around their own publisher name. The EA Desktop app joins the ‘EA Play’ subscription service in this, itself a rebranding of the EA Access and Origin Access subscription game services.
Such rebrands have become an increasingly common sight, particularly as we’ve seen the gaming subscription service arms race hot up. Amazon rebranded its Twitch Prime membership service as Prime Gaming just this week.
This rebranding notably coincides with the announcement that EA Play access is soon to be included with an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate/PC subscription.
The new app promises a redesigned UI, and cross-play or cross-progression and generational play on every game. This is an expansion on Origin’s cross-platform ambitions that introduced mobile integration.