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EA Reveals New Subscription Service on Xbox One

EA Access includes a back catalog of EA games, discounts, and the ability to play games early.

Electronic Arts has a new idea for a gaming subscription service, and it's called EA Access. Currently exclusive to Xbox One, EA Access grants entry to a back catalog of EA games inside The Vault, a 10% discount on purchasing games and DLC digitally, and access to retail games five days before release.

Starting today, it's rolling out to Xbox One users, and signups occur through the EA Access Hub app.

Users can choose between a monthly ($4.99) or annual ($29.99) subscription fee, and the first wave of games loaded into the The Vault include Peggle 2, Battlefield 4, Madden NFL 25, and FIFA 14. Those games have been handpicked for the beta, however, and it's unclear if games in The Vault will stay for limited periods, rotate, or eventually have time limits associated with them. For now, it's unlimited, while EA sees how people respond to the program.

I have to imagine paying a few dollars to start playing Dragon Age: Inquisition nearly a week before release is going to be awfully tempting, especially since your progress will be saved. Any takers?

If successful, it's likely EA Access becomes available elsewhere, but no details on that just yet.

More specifics on EA Access are available through a FAQ on the company's website.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
157 Comments
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Edited by FajitaBoss

Pretty much the coolest thing EA has done since they published the original Dungeon Keeper. Hopefully this will help with the demise of the second hand market, More money going into devs & publishers = more games.

Posted by raikoh05

when the fuck is peggle 2 pc

Posted by Clubvodka

I only skimmed the comments but the reaction here seems to be bad. I'm probably the only one think this has potential. I've recently got back in to FIFA, I'd happily pay the subscription if a few months, six months, or even a year down the line I got FIFA 15 without buying it.

I think there's a lot of EA-bashing for the sake of it. It doesn't look like it'll inhibit anyone that doesn't want it, so why complain?

Posted by jaycrockett

Seems like this would have made more sense on 360 or PC where there a tons of old EA games. Oh well.

Posted by bhlaab

@fajitaboss: Well, more money going to the publishers anyway

Edited by DJJoeJoe

Is it really such a huge drop for the annual model? Save $20 off the monthly price by going annual for $30, I didn't see any mention of the $30 annual fee on the official announcement from EA, yet it's everywhere else on the net. EA is mostly pushing the monthly fee only, even though the annual is a vastly better deal and way more interesting, if true.

Posted by Fitzgerald

This is actually a good idea, and the price is right, but EA doesn't publish games that I want to play. Here's hoping Playstation Now! follows this pricing schema.

Posted by spraynardtatum

So will developers make more money through a subscription or if someone just bought the game at Best Buy?

I've always wondered how good of a deal it is for the actual creators/developers to be on a subscription service. Do musicians make good money for being on Pandora or directors for having a movie on Netflix?

Posted by ll_Exile_ll

Problem is that EA isn't exactly throwing out games like Ubi or Activision are. I doubt that your going to see any vault titles beyond the beta that aren't sports games. EA just doesn't have enough on the docket, that they can start giving stuff away for $30 a year or $5 a month.

What Activision are you talking about? Because the Activision I know puts out nothing but Call of Duty, Skylanders, and movie licensed games (with Destiny soon to join the list).

Online
Edited by Vao

On Paper this seems like a decent idea, however It's EA so i doubt it'll be great. Few questions I have,

  • One they mentioned back catalog of games, Be a cool to play classic EA games if they didn't shut down most of the online servers for anything older then 5 years and most of sports games had online features peppered throughout that make it impossible to play now days.
  • Two. I wounder if the gaming press will get the games earlier yet then Premium members or vice versa. Is there a point of a launch date now?
  • Three. I wounder if at some point BF Premium would be roped into something like this, "pay EA so much a year to gain access to Premium level stuff throughout all their games. Is it too far fetched in a Madden or NBA Live Premium?
Posted by Spitznock

Kind of interesting I guess. Might be worth it for those of us who don't have as much time as they used to to put into games. $5 bucks to try something for an hour or two is far more appealing than $60.

Posted by KaneRobot

I only skimmed the comments but the reaction here seems to be bad.

Because people enjoy hating EA, and people who don't own an XBox One are going to dismiss it since they can't use it yet. This behavior is nothing new.

This is one of the few decent things EA has done in a while, and it deserves to get some credit. I couldn't care less about Dragon Age 3 or discounts or whatever. I see Battlefield, FIFA, and Madden for less than the price of lunch. It at least deserves a shot.

Edited by Humanity

I would pay $30 a year for being able to play retail games earlier. Mostly because I live in Europe and that would offset the bullshit week-later release dates we get here.

Posted by Demoskinos

Zero personal interest in this (and also I don't have an Xbox anyways) but this seems not scummy and actually worth the money. So, kudos to EA I suppose. I wonder what the finer details of all of this is. Like do the games rotate and you can only access the current ones? Does it work like PS+ and you can keep and play what you want as long as you are active?

Posted by TheHBK

@shivoa said:

@patrickklepek said:

I have to imagine paying a few dollars to start playing Dragon Age: Inquisition nearly a week before release is going to be awfully tempting, especially since your progress will be saved. Any takers?

Would I pay $5 a month to get access to a demo of Dragon Age: Inquisition 5 days before release? Even with progress from the demo carrying over to the full game that is a massive step too far, not a chance I'll pay EA to normalise charging for demos.

This is very narrow minded. You are not paying $5 a month for a demo to Dragon Age. You are playing the full game. That is just one perk. You get access to the back catalog they put up, discounts on purchasing games like Dragon Age for 10% off and DLC too. Please do us a favor and think and read before posting. You're welcome.

Edited by melodiousj

meh… I'm really getting tired of having a hundred memberships to a hundred services with a hundred logins and a hundred passwords.

I can't hate EA for doing it, because it makes perfect sense, and it seems like a pretty decent value, but if I intend to play games that aren't published by EA at some point in the future, this sort of thing becomes an ever-increasing pain in my ass, especially if other publishers (*cough Activision and Ubisoft cough*) decide to follow suit.

Posted by cloudnineboya

Can i pay someone a subscription to not pay for these types of stuff.

Posted by jackburtonme

Buying a game is going on a date, but a monthly subscription is a relationship. It's not me EA, it's you. I'm not completely opposed to this model, but EA's is one of the last libraries I would pay monthly to play. It's unfortunate that it took driving almost all of their IPs into the ground to come up with this idea.

Edited by Rohok

So people welcome getting milked and swindled out of their money. This is new, lol. The reactions here are foolish and naive.

I'm not even shocked anymore.

30 dollars a year. After 3 years you've paid 90 dollars for maybe a few games you like. On STEAM, I can buy a "back catalog" of games for that much and probably have about 20 and for the rest of STEAM's existence (or the rest of my life). You get your games for the duration of your subscription. Fools. EA is tricking you again.

Posted by Shaunage

If EA had a better catalogue of Xbox One games, maybe this would be great. They don't, though. That times demo early thing needs to be a bigger part of this discussion. Most people seem to have missed it.

Posted by SomeJerk

The fine print, the TOS, people should read that before signing up to this.

nevermind, go ahead and give us a good laugh when the first cycle hits

Edited by FajitaBoss

@bhlaab said:

@fajitaboss: Well, more money going to the publishers anyway

yeah... :/ better of than money going to Gamestop thou. At least publishers invest in videogames.

Posted by spraynardtatum
@somejerk said:

The fine print, the TOS, people should read that before signing up to this.

nevermind, go ahead and give us a good laugh when the first cycle hits

Really good point. I wonder what the TOS are.

Posted by outerabiz

no thanks

Posted by inflagrantedelicto

Assuming EA doesn't completely screw this up (cherry-picking what you can play or how long you can play it), this could be a very interesting way to experience a variety of content.... 4 years from now when there are enough EA games released to justify $30/year.

Posted by Nasar7

Seems alright considering most EA games don't have much life after their release window anyway, especially multiplayer games that get shut off every couple years. The real problem is their current Xbox One lineup is garbage.

Posted by GalacticGravy

For me, it all depends on what games fall into "The Vault."

If they add some games I'd like to play (and I already bought Peggle 2) I'd go for it. It would be the equivalent of buying those games and then getting some demo access would be a nice addition. Of course, it also depends on how long you have access to these vault games. A year? 6 months? Forever?

Posted by Jensonb

@mb: Come on MB, you know it's not fair to expect LOGIC to play into EA's actions.

For me the biggest takeaway from this is...man, that most favoured nation deal between EA and Microsoft is still a thing? That must have been some far-reaching contract. I wonder if this is the same kind of thing they wanted to do with Nintendo before that hit the skids.

Posted by eccentrix

@cabbages said:

The 10% discount is pointless for digital downloads here in the UK as it will still be cheaper to buy them on disc.

But then you have to use a disc. Like a caveman!

Edited by kindgineer

Cool! $5 to play Battlefield 4 is enough for me to throwdown.

Posted by Lego_My_Eggo

This just fells like there copying and making there own version of PlayStation Plus/Games With Gold, which is not a bad idea, but there are only a handful of EA games that i want. So it just cheaper for me to either buy the games i want or wait to buy them cheaper, if i used this i could see myself with a lot of EA games i just don't care for, and discounts for things i just don't want.

Posted by onyxghost

Boo...

I lament that the days of me paying for a game getting the whole thing playing till I'd had my fill and then it went on the shelf like a trophy.

Boo to games as a service.

Posted by Saga

Sign me up

Posted by Rongaryen

I would be okay with spending $30 a year to play any and all EA games.

Edited by SupberUber

I've started developing an allergic reaction to paid subscriptions.

And now there is the potential for a subscription within a subscription. Nobody is forcing me, sure, it's just getting a bit ridiculous.

Posted by snowflame

No.

Edited by Brightside

I know EA get a ton of hate by default but this seems an interesting move, they're pushing the games-as-a-service model on consoles as something new. It'll be interesting to see how this all shakes out after a few months.

Edited by mlarrabee

This doesn't look dirty, but it's a foot in the door for subscription-only game releases. Then again, I haven't really played an EA game since Dead Space 2.

Posted by MB

I wonder if EA will sell DLC to people who are playing subscription copies of their games on Xbox One? Wait, of course they will, what was I thinking.

Moderator Online
Posted by MB

@djjoejoe said:

I didn't see any mention of the $30 annual fee on the official announcement from EA, yet it's everywhere else on the net.

It's right in the FAQ on EA.com that Patrick linked in his article...

"Membership in EA Access has been priced affordably at $4.99 per month, but you can save even more: $29.99 for a full year."

Moderator Online
Posted by Lnin0

For a company that understands how much people dislike them and is constantly talking about change, they sure continue to make dick moves....and we continue to let them take us back out on a date.

I know it will be different this time. EA really has changed. I can tell by just in how clear and concise this announcement is.

Online
Posted by Rotnac

@patrickklepek said:

I have to imagine paying a few dollars to start playing Dragon Age: Inquisition nearly a week before release is going to be awfully tempting, especially since your progress will be saved. Any takers?

Posted by Jedted

@patrickklepek: "I have to imagine paying a few dollars to start playing Dragon Age: Inquisition nearly a week before release is going to be awfully tempting, especially since your progress will be saved. Any takers?"

If this service comes to PC then I'd go for it.

Edited by conmulligan

I just got access to the beta. It seems pretty slick so far — once I ponied up the €24.99, I could start the download process directly from the EA Access app. I'll be really curious to see how hard Microsoft push this and if it ever makes it's way to PlayStation; I imagine it's using the same rights-management stuff as Games with Gold so I guess there's no reason why Sony couldn't open up PS Plus to publishers in a similar manner, but who knows what kind of agreement EA and Microsoft have.

Posted by JuggaloAcidman

This would be a great idea... If enjoyed playing sports games!

Posted by chick3n

$5 to play BF4, Fifa 14, Madden 25 and Peggle 2 for a month. I also get a 2 hour demo of Dragon Age to see if that games worth buying.

Really don't see what there's not to like.

Posted by AuthenticM

no

Posted by MB

Anyone know if this is going to require an Xbox Live Gold subscription as well? I can't imagine that it would...then again...we're talking about Microsoft and they don't exactly have the best track record when it comes to this sort of thing.

Moderator Online
Posted by Dan_CiTi

So will developers make more money through a subscription or if someone just bought the game at Best Buy?

I've always wondered how good of a deal it is for the actual creators/developers to be on a subscription service. Do musicians make good money for being on Pandora or directors for having a movie on Netflix?

Not sure how much Pandora pays precisely (some numbers are out there) but I know that Pandora has never had good financials, it's bad business for them for sure.

Anyway this seems OK, but not really for me.

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