Sony Trashes EA's New Access Program

Sony Trashes EA's New Access Program

Wondering why EA's new subscription Access program is on Xbox One and not PlayStation 4? Well, for starters, Sony doesn't think it's any good for their customers.

"We evaluated the EA Access subscription offering and decided that it does not bring the kind of value PlayStation customers have come to expect," a Sony representative said to Game Informer. "PlayStation Plus memberships are up more than 200% since the launch of PlayStation 4, which shows that gamers are looking for memberships that offer a multitude of services, across various devices, for one low price. We don't think asking our fans to pay an additional $US5 a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer."

The Access program, which EA announced yesterday, will allow Xbox One owners to pay $US5/month or $US30/year for unlimited access to a number of EA's games. When the program goes live this summer, it will launch with Battlefield 4, FIFA 14, Peggle 2, and Madden NFL 25. EA has not yet detailed how many games will be available, how often games will be added, or whether new games will also be a part of the service.

The program will also give discounts and early access to upcoming Xbox One games published by EA.


    This was a dumb move by Sony in my opinion. I personally think that if you only own a ps4 this subscription was more appealing then playstation plus. Sony was probably worried about 2 $15 titles they give away on ps4 stacks up against Battlefield 4 and Fifa 14. As people keep saying competition is good for consumers.

      To get the most out of this people would have required a PSN as well anyway given Battlefield is a multiplayer title and the PS4 requires PSN for online play. It's an odd move to at least not give buyers an option.

      This all depends on how you look at it. You pay the money to access the games, but you still have to purchase all the DLC etc. You're subscribing but never owning the games, but you'll end up owning the DLC... something's off there?

      It's not EA's entire catalogue either, it's a select few games you can access, not all of them. So no doubt you'll end up with 'packages' of games you can choose, just like foxtel for instance with its packaged channels. I mean to be honest, someone like me? The only one in the first pack that even partially appeals is BF4 and I've already seen that on sale for 37 dollars to *permanently* own. On top of that I'd have to *purchase* the DLC? That's not value. These are the sorts of things Sony takes into account. I'm sure if EA had made the packs say, 10 game packs or 20 game packs, then it would be an entirely different story but as it stands, this won't hurt them one bit.

        You don't have to purchase DLC.

        This service isn't for everyone (as per everything in the world), of course if you only like BF4 out of all the games then it's a service that isn't value for you. But this is an optional service, for some people it's going to be fantastic value, for example those of us who enjoy all other games being offered by EA access.

        How can you sit there defending denial of an optional service that presents value to some people?

          He's bringing up a valid point.

          Sure you don't NEED to buy DLC, but for those that do decide to purchase it, its an interesting situation.

          Stop subscribing and lose access to the DLC you technically own or
          Keep subscribing to a service you don't really use anymore because of the fear of losing access to content you technically own.

          Its an interesting one. If it included DLC as part of the subscription, it would look a lot better. Plus, you know.....more games...?

        So it is literally the same as PS+? Like what you just described has been happening since PS+ has come about. So how can you say that Sony takes this into account? It doesn't - if you get a game from the Instant Game Collection on PS+ you never get any DLC with it for free, you have to buy it. If you let the sub lapse with PS+ and you bought DLC with it, you are in the same predicament you would be in with EA Access.

        In fact your argument is convincing me that EA Access is better value - Any games that i get from this Vault that i like, i can instantly purchase any of its DLC at any time for 10% off then normal price instead of waiting for it to go on sale hopefully under PS+.

        In all - Sony didn't want this on their system because it means they would actually have to start offering full games on PS+ (on PS4), rather then just $10-15 arcade titles in order to continue to maintain the high ground.

        Last edited 31/07/14 10:05 am

          Yep, now you pay twice as much! Neither way is exceptionally good. But, if one wishes to go for a rental service, more power to them. I don't think PS+ is particularly awesome either in the whole renting games thing either, but it is what it is. Personally, I'm all for permanent ownership of a game over rental. I don't like the idea of temporary leasing.

          Last edited 31/07/14 10:30 am

            Personally i also prefer hard copies of games but at $39 for full games and a permanent 10% discount on all EA content, it is much better value then say renting a game on the PS Now Service (with their stupidly high prices) or simply having PS+ just for the Instant Game Collection on PS4 (if you don't have a PS3/Vita) and you didn't play online.

            I have been subbed since PS4 launch and can count on my fingers the amount of times i have played online or used any game from the IGC. I have already used the Vault yesterday more then i have PS+, and while milage varies person to person, i really do wish there was some competition on the PS4 to force Sony to better their offerings on the PS4.

              You see, this is logic I agree with wholly when you put it that way :) Hearing from someone in practical sense always makes it sound better rather than with the hyperbole that goes around. So ta :)

                I think one major benefit that you are all missing is the 5 day early access to selected titles and also the 10% off buying the full game thereafter

                This 5 day access applies to FIFA 15 and Dragon Age Inquisition... two games alone that I know fans will kill to play early... Sony should be carefull when it comes to pissing off EA as well because half their customer base plays BF4 and FIFA more than likely...

                just for clarification I don't like the subscription thing and I prefer to have my own physical copies but it is undeniable that EA are giving great value in this deal.

            Just about all games these days are a temporary lease. Steam, any downloaded games through PSN/XBL, all of them are just temporary leases.

              Nah steam is different. Theyve got it written that should valve ever go out of business all your games keys will be released to you.

          If I recall correctly, you get to own your PS Plus games.

            No - no you don't. The only games you will ever get to keep are the free ones Sony gave when they got hacked as part of their Welcome Back package.

            If you let your PS+ sub lapse you will loose access to every game in your Instant Game Collection.

            You have the games as long as you're subbed. As long as you've "purchased" the game while it was on offer for PS+ subscribers then you'll be able to download or re-download it whilst you're subscribed. If your subscription lapses, you won't be able to access them but if you re-subcribe you'll get them back. I've had PS+ for years and I can still download games that were offered when I first got it.

        Well it's a good thing that Sony offer all DLC for free for games they publish and offer with PS+ isn't it?

        Right down to the online passes required for multiplayer on most of their bigger first party PS3 titles.

        Wait, they do that don't they?

          I don't recall defending Sony doing that in any post, 'Wait I didn't do that did I' to use a rather silly statement. But as I said above, it's a great service for those who may find it useful but not for me personally. Like I said, I'm sure Sony took into account the fact that it's a limited bunch of games without the DLC etc etc and the fact that they'll end up not making a lot on their online store purchases if people choose this route. It's not to say its the RIGHT choice, but they, as the service provider do have the right to make this decision. It's not like it'll send them broke. Their other divisions are doing that well enough for them at this point...

          Last edited 31/07/14 10:26 am


      I'm 50/50.

      Having the choice would be good... but more subscriptions... from EA, and others that would follow... I'm just not prepared for that either.

    200% doesnt seem like a lot considering its now required for multiplayer.

      Seems fairly reasonable for me. The PS4 is still quite new and sitting at about 8 or so million sales (as a rough estimate). Given the install base of the PS3 and the fact that many PS4 buyers would have brought their existing PSN subscription over from the PS3, 200% doesn't seem especially bad.

      "We held multiplayer hostage behind a paywall, but we're going to point to the ransom payment to claim it as popular with customers."
      Yeeeeaaah. Right.

        It was popular on PS3 before PS4 launched though. It's generally pretty excellent value just for the instant game collection, especially once you've had it for a bit. Though there's also the insidious flipside that the longer you have it and the more games you get for it, the more it becomes indispensable and the more you're stuck with paying them for it.

          It was %200 less popular apparently. Considering they've sold 8 point something million Ps4s, and assuming there were 3 million subscribers before (a fairly generous estimate I'd think) , a %200 jump would mean they had about 9 million subscribers now? Or would a fair chunk of that jump in subscriptions be for PS3 users. Also, it'd be a generous estimate considering quite a few early PS4 adopters would already be Ps+ subscribers. I wonder if they'll ever give us solid figures.

          Oh, I had a subscription for the bonuses. But like @jimmydanger says, I don't think their 200% increase post-PS4 launch was due to everyone suddenly being exposed to the 'great value'.

          I agree. It's the paywall for multiplayer that topped it to 200%.

          Especially given that the PS+ offering on PS4 hasn't been tempting for me. I'm only keeping my sub for the PS3/ Vita games ATM.

          And if Sony stuff another shoddy Lego port onto the Vita's plus section after The Hobbit, Batman AND now Harry Potter (Sorry if I missed one)... well, I just don't know how much longer I can take that.

    See as a primarily pc gamer I think this is a great idea, as this covers an entire publisher for my gaming in console, I'm not prepared to constantly buy all the sports games and I like playing shooters on both console and pc, but normally only buy for one alternating between releases. With a publisher subscription I can play my console games without forking out 90 bucks every few months and still buy my pc games when someone is selling keys crazy low (paid 30 bucks for bf4 on a keyseller 5 months ago)

    Sony a good idea would be to try and bargain a two teir system. Make ps+ what it is now, and then do for an extra 5 a month ps+publisher's, giving full access to publisher subscription Package, EAs and anymore coming soon. This way you're still the one controlling the money on the platform.

    My ps4 Library is so small because of a lack of affordable titles. This will help with that and boost people buying up to this gen.

    I'm getting an xbone for the halo pack, so bring out your version by November, or I suspect a loss of sales as the best value always wins.

    Deja ve anyone? I remember Nintendo falling out with EA over Origin, and it was EA pulled support. Now Sony are doing the same. I think it's time they all realise EA is the problem here not thr big 3.

    Last edited 31/07/14 8:19 am

      Exactly! EA could afford to cut nintendo off to make a point to the other two, but there's no way they can stiff Sony, especially at this point in terms of sales.

        Could they really cut Nintendo off in the long term? True they could this generation, but Nintendo are far from dead. They could flop another console and still be there in the 10th gen. But to lose Sony now in the short term is a death sentence.

    "PlayStation Plus memberships are up more than 200% since the launch of PlayStation 4"

    Would that have anything to do with the fact that its mandatory to play online, Sony?

    I also like how they didn't mention its $30 a year, which is $2.50 a month and completely optional. Id pay that for early access alone.

    To put it in perspective, it costs $2.99 for only fours of "PlayStation now" for one game VS $2.50 a month for four games that you can download to your console with more being added down the track.

    I think its quite sad that they didn't let consumers choose.

    Last edited 31/07/14 8:25 am

      Do you know if once the game goes out out rotation do you lose it?

        Most likely, but they have said they have no plans to do that.

        You have to look it like a Netflix style subscription. Games may get taken off eventually but you'll get plenty of time to play them.

          Yeah that's how I see it too.... a couple of bucks a month to essentially rent a couple of fully fledged games I'd probably never buy anyway. Especially games like BF4, I love to hammer them on launch and get a few good weeks but then I rarely jump on and constantly play them (I'm looking at you titanfall).

          This service is worth it IMO.

            Yep but you don't get any of the DLC unless you purchase it... so when the game goes off 'rotation' you're left with a bunch of DLC you can't use that you paid for?

              EA has said that games won't leave the vault once they go in. There's no rotation.

                Time will tell whether it's a good service or not. Hopefully it's not just a service to dump their older titles to and you'll see some more recent ones go to it, potentially even brand new ones, who knows. But personally, using a PC primarily for gaming I can't say this represents the kind of value for me I'd be after. But if it does for others, that's awesome, I do hope they get the best value out of it they can. I don't necessarily agree with Sony and I think it's got a lot to do with them being egotistical, but I still don't think we've found out everything we need to know yet, given there's only been one press release so far.

                Last edited 31/07/14 9:04 am

                That's pretty good if we end up with a selection of games and not just "3 or 4 per month".

                With my current gaming habits I'm fine not "owning" the games, in my former years I would have been up in arms about it but meh. I just chalk this upto a rental service, it's less than half the cost of buying one game in 12 months, chump change really.

        The games are subject to be removed at any time. The T's&C's do look kinda crap TBH.

        As I said before, I would love the choice, but would hate to have to pay $2.50 a month to EA, Activision and Ubisoft etc in the future. Especially if this works and they start to limit what you can do without subscribing, like what happened to XBL and PS+.

        They all start out great value, and slowly become just a big paywall.

          yep I can see it happening, soon will be paying every company subs, I guess its still cheaper than paying $100 for a disc.

          EDIT: In saying that I pretty much buy all games I'm interested in at Launch.

          Last edited 31/07/14 12:21 pm

    This is very very bad model. You see and you think it is good at first sight, but it is not. Basically you are paying $2.99 for a library that you are potentially not using it very much. Think it as steam mixed Netflix but you don't own any games and only have access to games from 1 single publisher.

    so now instead of getting discount/deals from Sony or Microsoft subscriptions, you are now paying for more to get "extra" from publisher. If EA succeeds with this model, many publishers will follow this path.

    Remember, you are paying $30 a year for access to a library which you will rarely use. no replay value without re-subscribing.

      Who said we wont use it?

      Think about this, you could buy 3 years of EA Access and still have money left over or buy BF 4 on the Xbox store for $99.

      Even if you never use the service again, that's less then half the cost of just one of the games you get straight away.

      Last edited 31/07/14 12:37 pm

        Hmm..pricing for Australia is slightly more expensive that our US friends (suprise, suprise)
        $6.99 per month or $39.99 per year

        Read the T's&C's... they are a little off putting tbh, if you consider this is EA.

        Not that that justifies taking away the choice.

      Maybe it's a library that you will rarely use, but the audacity to lecture people and tell them that it's a library that they'll rarely use is amazing.

      I got a ps4 mate thinking of buying an xbox one, he loves fifa, nba and bf4, sounds ideal for him as he wont want to buy them all again to play with me.

    This maybe a bad business decision for Sony, but they may have saved us in the long run.

    This deal would set a precedent that other companies will follow. imagine if all olderCOD games require an activision pass, all assassin's creed requireds a ubisoft pass.

    What then stops them from pulling multiplayer server support from everyone not on the pass.

      Nothing. It says in the T's&C's EA can cancel any games at any time and pull the server support with only a 30 day warning ONLY on their site. And that's for subscribers.

      I'm not sure how I feel about this TBH. I would like the choice, but at the same time I see this going a BAD way if everyone follows suit.

      Last edited 31/07/14 12:09 pm

    Just came to a realisation (stick with me here):
    You pay for PlayStation Plus to get PlayStation (ps3, ps4, vita) games.
    You pay for Xbox live gold and get Xbox games (360, one).

    So... This EA program would make a lot more sense if you get EA games... On ALL platforms. That would be good value.

    I can see where Sony is coming from, since it would be supplementing / competing directly with PS+ if it launched exclusively for PS4s for the fee. At the same time, if it were a platform agnostic offering for one fee, I'd be thinking Sony needs to pull their head in.

      Make it could of worked that way, and Sony didn't want any part of it? I wouldn't be surprised.

    Yeah because there is so much choice out there on PS4 that there's no need for a way to play some of the half decent games at a reduced price! *sigh* if you're not going to have a deluge of next gen launch titles at least give us some reason to own next gen consoles.

    Well of course Sony's customers won't see EA's service as good value if Sony won't let them use it on their platform ...

    While I understand people's concerns about Sony's actions, this seems to be EA trying to implement online passes in another form. Not only are you having to pay for an XBox Gold/PSPlus subscription to use online features (buying a used game from a store), you now also have to pay EA's subscription fees as well to use their games (The online pass). Sony's not exactly "trashing" the program, merely saying that the proposal EA made did not seem to be in the interests of the consumer.

      "Interests of The Consumer" = "Will see reduction in PS+/PSNow revenue"

      Also why are you saying that you HAVE to pay EA's subscription to play their games? No you do not. That is simple misinformation. If you want to keep buying boxed copies or whatever your doing now, keep doing it - nothing is stopping you. All this subscription service will offer is older games in a digital format to consumers for $40 a year, along with 10% discounts on digital EA games and a 5 day preview to new release games.

      TLDR: This is as far from an online pass as possible. In no way if you buy a game from EA do you need the subscription to access the online features of a game. The end.

      Last edited 31/07/14 11:49 am

    Sony's right, the best thing for gamers is to have poor internet security.

      I'm not sure if you're trying to take a jab at Sony's infrastructure, but if you are I thought we all got over throwing mud at that a while back. Yes it shouldn't have happened, but in reality, Sony were targeted, and if it were another company that was targeted by this group they would have also gotten hacked. No system is completely secure, even the Pentagon has supposedly been hacked, and I think most people who aren't completely biased are willing to admit that all these years later...

      Take Microsoft for example, while there are only rumours of XBL hacking (Actually it happened to my brother. Someone hacked his account, changed his name etc) but if you look at Internet Explorer, it's widely regarded as bing insecure.

      Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not defending Sony or trying to bash Microsoft, just pointing out that if you want to try bash someone, at least pick something that they are actually doing wrong, and not something that, as much as I don't like to say it, could have happened to anyone. That way you wont look like a biased fanboy. No offence.

      Unless you aren't trying to bash anyone.. then IDK what you're trying to say..

    People do have a choice. They can get an xbox and sign up for it.

    Last edited 31/07/14 11:58 pm

    In light of this criticism from Sony is downright hypocritical.

    Isn't this basically what Playstation Now is supposed to be? Except for a reasonable price? Which therefore undermines the value (snigger) Playstation Now? And Sony don't want to support it?

    Funny, that.

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