“We’re working with Valve and Steam to more effectively connect our friend lists, so you can play across multiple multiplayer games, regardless of the platform on which you want to play the game,” said Mike Blank, senior vice president from EA’s gaming networks, Engadget said in an interview.
With that in mind, you’ll need to create an EA account (if you have not already) to buy or access EA games on Steam. You also need to use EA’s Origin launcher during the installation process, said Blank, but once you’ve linked your accounts, you can start the games directly from Steam.
However, you can not start games purchased from Origin on Steam at this time. This may change as the “relationship between Steam and Valve evolves”. However, as always, you can add games from startup programs other than shortcuts to your Steam library by adding the option “Add a non-Steam game to My Library,” but it will not launch the game directly.
After EA had exclusively released PC games over Origin for several years, they decided to re-release them on Steam to help players gain access to the titles. “We want to be where the players are,” said Blank, who oversees Origin and EA Access. “We want to make it as smooth as possible for people to play our games wherever they want and when they want (it makes sense) to bring our games back to a platform like Steam, where millions of people play games today.”
We have recently seen another notable example of this change in approach: EA Access appears on PS4. So far, it was only available on Xbox One and on the PC as Origin Access. Steam will be the fourth method of accessing the subscription service that will be available “sometime in the spring of next year,” Blank said.
It’s not clear yet if EA plans to release all of his future games on Steam. Blank noted, however, that there are more announcements beyond the already confirmed titles: Fallen Order, Apex Legends, FIFA 20, Battlefield V, The Sims 4 and Unravel 2.
With the breakthroughs in the PC gaming landscape, where Epic Games blocks exclusive stores for its store and Blizzard and Rockstar have their own launchers, it’s gratifying that big publishers are working with the windows of potential competitors. Not only EA games return to Steam, Ubisoft also has games there and began selling titles through the Epic Games Store, starting with The Division 2.
Blank would not discuss the details of the partnership with Steam, including whether EA achieves a lower revenue share from Valve than other publishers and studios, or whether Valve receives fewer purchases in the game. It’s also not known if you can watch EA games in other digital stores, such as Epic’s Store. However, the publisher does not exclude this.
The executive said EA was open to new partnerships that people can use on different platforms. The publisher, he explained, “continues to explore and evaluate other potential game services on the market where we could offer our games to our players.”