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Dragon Age II Pulled From Steam, EA Points Finger at Valve

Valve remains quiet about its strained relationship with Electronic Arts.

Dragon Age II is the latest game to be caught in the middle of tensions between EA and Steam.
Dragon Age II is the latest game to be caught in the middle of tensions between EA and Steam.

The continued, confusing relationship between Valve, Steam and Electronic Arts continues, with Dragon Age II coming down from the digital platform as the game's downloadable content launches.

Dragon Age II: Legacy, the first major expansion for the RPG sequel, launched this week. Soon after, Dragon Age II came down from Steam without an explanation.

As has been the case in the past, EA was quick to issue a statement about the reason why.

"At EA, we offer our games and content to all major download services including GameStop, Amazon, Direct2Drive and Steam," said EA senior VP of global e-commerce David DeMartini in an emailed statement. "Unfortunately, Steam has adopted a set of restrictive terms of service which limit how developers interact with customers to sell downloadable content. No other download service has adopted this practice. Consequently some of our games have been removed by Steam."

"We hope to work out an agreement to keep our games on Steam," he continued.

So far, that hasn't happened. Dragon Age II still isn't available through Steam.

Crysis 2 still isn't available on Steam, after being pulled over downloadable content issues.
Crysis 2 still isn't available on Steam, after being pulled over downloadable content issues.

The erratic process of pulling EA games from Steam started a few weeks back, when Crysis 2 disappeared. EA said the reason was a change on policy regarding downloadable content, as EA and Crytek had brokered a deal for another distributor to be the exclusive host of that content.

Thus, Crysis 2 came down.

"It’s unfortunate that Steam has removed Crysis 2 from their service. This was not an EA decision or the result of any action by EA," said the company at the time. "Steam has imposed a set of business terms for developers hoping to sell content on that service--many of which are not imposed by other online game services. Unfortunately, Crytek has an agreement with another download service which violates the new rules from Steam and resulted in its expulsion of Crysis 2 from Steam."

Rumors persist Battlefield 3 will not be on Steam when it releases in October. A list of digital distributors on the official website didn't include Steam, but was eventually pulled down. EA has not officially commented, except to say the decision rested completely in the hands of Steam, not them.

When Crysis 2 came down from Steam, Alice: Madness Returns went up. I asked about Battlefield 3.

"No new information on BF3 or what Steam will decide to do with other EA titles," said the company. "We are glad they chose to post Alice on Steam."

You can still purchase Dragon Age: Origins on Steam.

Patrick Klepek on Google+