Battlefield 3 On Steam? All Signs Point To ‘Maybe’…

Battlefield 3 On Steam? All Signs Point To ‘Maybe’…

Ever since we got wind that Battlefield 3 wouldn’t be released on Steam, we’ve heard multiple rumours that folks were working behind the scenes to make it happen. This is another of those rumours, backed with a smidgeon of evidence.

The first piece of evidence is this competition, found on the Sapphire Select Club website. One of the prizes in this competition is “[o]ne (1) PC Game code for Battlefield 3, redeemable for the game on Steam”.

Now this could simply be a mistake on the part of those running the competition. In fact, Sapphire are probably so used to writing competition Ts and Cs that reference Steam codes that they just assumed it would be the same with this comp.

But there’s also this. One user found that the PBSetup.exe file, which is used to install Punk Buster for Battlefield Installs, has been updated with the following install files…

C:\Program Files (x86)\Electronic Arts\Battlefield 3\
C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\battlefield 3\
C:\Program Files\Steam\SteamApps\common\battlefield 3\
C:\Program Files\Electronic Arts\Battlefield 3\

Despite this accumulating evidence, it could be difficult since Battlefield 3 is built into the Origin and Battlelog system — but ultimately the audience available on Steam is just too overwhelmingly large to ignore. We believe it’ll only be a matter of time before we see Battlefield 3 on Steam.

Thanks Bluth54!


  • While I want BF3 on Steam, it probably wouldn’t make much difference. It would likely be just using Steam as a launcher to get into Origin, like all the GFWL games. I don’t really see the point :/

    • If I can have Steam manage my patches and re-download when I get a new PC and forget to back it up, then I’ll buy it – and not a day before.

      That’s the point, for me at least.

    • why would it make you launch origin first? thats stupid. it obviously would not launch origin if you have the steam version.

  • Steam: Preparing to start Battlefield 3

    Steam: First time install: DirectX

    Steam: Starts your default web browser into the main menu

    • This. Can’t say I see the point of getting it on Steam. People made a huge fuss over it but it barely makes a difference.

      • Well if they got rid of the web browser in the main menu it might steer me closer into getting it. The game itself, I think is absolutely beautiful, it’s just how this is delivered to PC is what irked me off it, then the whole threatening to ban accounts for wandering unintentionally into a modded server, then the vehicle unlocks… I have no idea why that was done that way. “Try to fly a jet with absolutely no upgrades against one that’s got radar unlocks, laser guided bombs, flares(I think they’re on jets too)”

        I don’t like having to install some software I’ll probably never use again just to get one game, and not only that, endure a web browser as the main menu. It makes me feel like “Did I even buy this game to own?”

        • Initially, I’d have agreed with you about having the game built into your web browser, but after playing the beta, and now owning the retail game, it’s probably the best thing they’ve done with the game, and I hope to see a few more games adopting this method in the future.

          For one thing, refreshing the list of servers is almost instant, where inside of BF:BC2 it could take anywhere from 15 seconds to a minute to refresh the list of servers, and even then, it wasn’t always correct.

          Another aspect I like is the friends/party management, in that instead of having separate windows/panes like steam has, everything is built into the bottom… status bar… I guess you’d call it…

        • totally agree about the jets, if even you started with flares would be major help, I’ve tried to fly them as mates keep going on how awesome it is but I last about 5 seconds in the sky

        • Hopefully I don’t sound like a dick, but that’s your opinion. Personally, I just find it to be a rather annoying and cumbersome hoop to jump through. And my interest in BF3 was kind of warmish to begin with, with so many other games coming out that I’m more excited for, i’ll just get those.

          • Nup. You don’t sound like a Dick. Your reasoning matches that of every person I’ve spoken to.

            I think competition is healthy, and encourage others to push boundaries. Thus far though EA has done exactly what Microsoft did with GFWL – launch a sub-standard digital delivery service, paired with strange and restrictive policies.

            They are drawing customers that are happy to sacrifice on those points, just to gain access to EA’s premium title BF3. I for one am happy that end of the ‘bell curve’ is spending less time on Steam games.

          • I think it’s a bit early to say EA has launched a sub standard service, seeing as they’ve only just got it out the door, and they have got Warner Bros, THQ and someone else to sign up and sell their games on Origin, which is good, to an extent. Competition is good, repetition is not. If Origin just turns out to be a Steam-clone, why would I bother with it, when I can use Steam, a proven service that I’ve already spent a lot on? They have to offer something better imo. And it is do-able, is a great site that I also like to buy stuff from, so my digital purchases are generally split between Steam and GOG. If Origin wants my dollar, they need to provide me with a good, differentiating factor to draw me into their service.

          • “I think it’s a bit early to say EA has launched a sub standard service, seeing as they’ve only just got it out the door.”

            The only actual difference between Origin and EA’s previous online client is the colour scheme. Everything from how it works to the design and even the images for buttons and such are identical.

          • Steam was abysmal when it was first launched, and has steadly grown and had feature after feature integrated over a long time.

            Origin is essentially trying to have all(most) of the same features from launch, as well as intergrated online server browsing/in game stats tracking(for bf3) which as far as i know steam doesn’t do.

            I’d say all things considered it has done quite well. Steam was a LOT more of a headache when it was first released.

            Also, battlelog is not half as bad as people make out. BF3 engine was built with alt-tabbing and battlelog in mind, and browsing for a server with real time refreshed ping/details etc is a lot faster. It’s unfamiliar, but not altogether bad.

          • Again, EA’s client which is what Origin is, has existed in pretty much the same form it’s in now since 2005. The only major feature chance since then has been the addition of the EA store.

          • Dude, did you not have Steam in the early days? It was an absolute memory hog and crashed all the time. So much so that Valve nearly canned it themselves.

          • EA Downloader was launched in 2005…Steam only have 3 years on EA’s online client and look at how big the difference is in quality.

        • I have to agree with you dude. I heard everyone complaining about it, even though I quite liked the different approach because it felt quicker to me. So I did a test, I timed BC2, BLOPS and BF3 from desktop to gameplay and BF3 was 25 seconds faster. I even timed it to change map while you’re in a game and still it was faster.

          I think it’s just a case of old school gamers having their rose tinted glasses on. (BTW I’m an old school gamer – 29yo)

          • As much as i agree that the speed of origin/battlelog is faster to get from desktop to play, there are other issues that arent great.

            – Having to change your name through a web based link that you have to search the internet for rather than doing it in origin client
            – Unable to change avatar and only being able to use stock images
            – Unable to backup games through origin (without spending 45 mins with ea support only to be accused of pirating the game i own)
            – Unable to save installer files for re-installing later
            – Chat window is integrated to the main origin window which takes up significantly more screen real estate
            – Origin friends arent always found in battlelog to add them there (seperate friends list for some reason)
            – Unable to delete a beta game that i will never play again from the games list

            There are a number of reasons why origin is not as good as steam. A few of the reasons above are really quite basic things, like being able to backup an 11.4 gb game so that you dont have to re-download it after a format or if there is more than 1 person in the house that plays the game.

          • I think you misinterpreted me.

            A) Origin = crap. Battlelog = a step in the right direction.
            B) I still prefer Steam.

        • Except it’s not in game, and I can’t tweak my settings unless I load a level? Unless you know of another way?

  • Not too fussed about it being on Steam or not, but hopefully if it’s on Steam that means no Origin. Still have to deal with Battlelog though. Ughk.

  • I’d think the most likely explanation for the PB install files is that the developers were originally supporting steam (like the frostbite engine has in the past) and that they forgot to remove some files, some times you find stuff in the files of games that are from different games entirely because some one forgot to completely wipe out test assets or old features

  • Battlelog is better than you think guys. lol.

    PC Master Race is the Master Race for a reson. Flexabilaty in ALL areas, and the abiltaty to not be cornerd in to a serten way of doing it.

    At any rate, its not like BF3 is the first game to do this. iRacing has been doing it for years. So meh.

    As for Origin, it is a faster program than STEAM FYI. MUCH faster. Yeah, it has a few problems, but it is still just a program to access your games with. Like Steam.

    • Actually mate, it’s a window into your PC that you just sold EA the license to use whenever it wants, for any reason, and to sell whatever it finds to anyone it wants…

      • Read it again dude, they can pass it on to subcontractors of EA, not sell it off to third parties that have no relationship to EA.

        Only way a marketing company can get it is if they work for EA.

        They took a step back on their EULA and TOS. The only nasty thing left is the crappy arbitration clause which doesn’t apply in Australia.

  • I dont get all the hate with Battlelog.
    Using a webpage for the server browser is an awesome idea. Remember the beginnings of BC2 server browser? It was horrific. Plus now you read can do other stuff for the 20-30 seconds it takes the game to load.

    As for Steam, if it means you can bypass Origin Im all for it. Origin buggered up my order and then EA messed me around for a week on launch. Just a pity the games so damn good 😛

    • Compared to the BC2 server browser it is much better but as you pointed out the BC2 server is not a shining example.

      Everything the actual server browser does could have just as easily been accomplished within the game. It feels completely unnecessary.

      Just another barrier put between the player and the game.

      • The exact same thing that would happen if the server for an in game browser goes down, gets hacked or is DDOS’d. It’s not like having it in game makes it run on magic and fairy dust, it’s just a different front end interface, the back end stuff will pretty much be the same.

      • exactly the same thing that happened when the Minecraft login server was DDOS’d, or the EVE Online login server was attacked.

    • Plus, I like that I can manage things with the game (friends, profile, server favourites) without being in the game. Means I can do that stuff whilst Im at work so Im prepared when I get home

  • Oh man, and to think I just wasted 79 bucks when I could have possibly had my cake and eaten it too aka minus Origin..

    • Not really. I don’t see any of Origin. I just have BattleLog as a favourite.

      There’s really *nothing* negative about having it on Origin vs Steam when you launch the game from a browser. All Origin does — and all Steam will do — is open your internet browser.

      • Exactly. Why should I get yet another program running in the background if all it does is opens my web browser?

  • Why is everyone so down on origin? I have had nothing but a positive experience with it – the download speeds i have been getting on it are shitting over any steam speeds i have ever got (in some cases over 700x) and i haven’t had any issues launching it or redeeming items either. And BF3 came out on origin for $79 with the Physical Warfare Pack if you pre-ordered which is cheaper then what EB was offering the PWP (It was exclusive to EB) at $88.

    Sure it is a bit clunky and there are some prices on there that are outrageous but so is steam…

    • For me personally my problem with Origin it self is that it is at best equal to Steam and I don’t need or want two different game libraries on my computer. I tried that with Sins of a Solar Empire and Demigod on Impulse and in the end it didn’t work.

      My secondary problem is I just plain don’t trust EA.

    • “and there are some prices on there that are outrageous but so is steam…”

      Yeah but EA have direct control over those prices and still decide to keep them high. Steam on the other hand don’t decide those prices.

    • For the same reason I’m down on Steam and any game that’s more than just “Insert disc, install game, play.”

    • I was pretty annoyed when i found out you had to install Origin to play BF3, but got over it pretty quickly. It’s not really a big deal.
      It’s sort of redundant having two programs that basically do the same thing (since a majority of my games are on Steam).
      I haven’t found any faults with the service and it runs fine. However, I’m not planning on purchasing any games from the store.

  • The sapphire thing is odd, but the installer seems more like a generic punkbuster installer that’s used by both, and just installs to everywhere.

  • Add “Non Steam game” – Origin.
    Launch Origin
    Launch BF3
    Launch Browser
    Launch Game
    Use Steam community in game.

    Apart from joining friends’ servers you can already put BF3 into steam. Althought there are alot of annoying lauchers and steps inbetween. I use it to just have steam friends chat in game. Saves me alt tabbing all the time.

  • I’ve always wondered why there was so much hate directed towards battlelog. Why do people hate battlelog & origin.

    While origin did have its fair share of bugs during the beta, they’ve improved it significantly to the point where it runs/loads up as quick as steam now (even so, the only time you ever need to use origin, is to launch the game)

    I also think battlelog is a good idea, and quite convenient. My only problem with battlelog is that you can change key bindings/settings out of the game – although this could probably be done through the configs.

    • No point adding it as a non-steam game. When it ends up on Steam, it’d be like this:

      Launch Steam
      Launching the Game means Launching Origin
      Launching Browser
      Launch Game

      yeah I really don’t think I’d touch the Steam version either.

  • Could it be that EA have noticed that BF3 hasn’t sold as well as previous versions of the game and have considered the reason why might be related to the lack of interest in Origin?

  • I for one really like battlelog and have never had a problem with Origin. My download speeds are always at max.

    The one thing I’d like to see in battlelog is the ability to customise you load out while not in game.

    If BF3 does come out Steam and I feel the need to have it in Steam I’ll just put my cd key in steam. That’s what I did with BC2.

  • my issue with origin is that it’s an unpopular gaming library/platform, and they’re using this years (arguably) biggest release to blackmail people into using it.

  • Personally I haven’t bought BF3 yet because these days I’m quite lethargic about installing new services, especially since my PC is long overdue for a format. If it popped up in the Steam updates, I’d be playing it that night.

  • I wonder if it wont work on STEAM just like it doesn’t work on ORIGIN for me.

    GAME have refused to give me a refund too. Man I love DRM!

    • Looks like they do support their customers after all.
      Just got a call that they will give me a store credit. Good on them.
      Man this hasn’t been good for these fellas, first JB kill their midnight launch, now this Digital Distribution thing is biting them too.

  • *shrug* I bought a hard copy. I’ve been using Origin. 0 problems, games aren’t hard to find and I’m having a ball.

    Enjoy whatever game you’re playing that isn’t BF3.

  • I personally believe that EA will distribute it as soon as the pre-order deal is over.
    They want as many people on origin but they won’t force it due to the EULA debacle just wait a few weeks and it will be on steam.

  • all battlelog haters gtfo.

    I love battlelog.

    Lets me fuck around with dogtags during work and see what I’m going to unlock tonight.

    Origin also lets me download games at more than 100kb/sec cos their servers don’t suck nuts like Steam’s do

    • I haven’t downloaded at anything below 3.0MB/s via Steam. Don’t know what your problem with them is. Ports forwarded?

  • Basically, my problem with EA’s stradegy is that they are basically using one of the best games released for a long time, and using it to force people into using their shoddy game platform.

    If I get Battlefield 3 now, I’m green-lighting EA’s tactics, and it will probably just happen again. If it means that I don’t get BF3 for a while, so be it.

  • If the Steam version (given that it’s real) doesn’t make me download the game for like 3 times with restricted bandwidth then i’ll happily buy another copy of BF3.

  • One thing is another channel. Why not, who cares. But Origin has so many limitations and the biggest IMO is that I cannot chose English platform or English menued games when I sit in a non English country. That sucks for many of us out there in the big world and it makes no fucxxxg sense. Even their web page is automatically in the regional language with no option to change… WHY ea? WHY?

    Differentiate prices… I don’t care, but for pete sake let me choose language, at least English!!!!

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