EA's Impressive New PC Subscription Service Won't Degrade Its Old One

EA's Origin Access service is already one of the better deals in gaming, so the announcement of a more expensive version got us wondering if there was a catch. After checking with EA, it doesn't seem there is.

Announced on Saturday, the new EA Origin Access Premier service costs $19.95 a month or $129.99 for the year and gets subscribers full, five-day early access to what seems to be all of the company's new PC games - Anthem, Battlefield V, FIFA, Madden - in addition to a deep well of older EA games, some indies and some stuff from others publishers.

(The so-called Vault is comically stocked with great games, including a slew of Dead Space, Dragon Age, and Arkham games, old Wing Commanders and Ultimas as well as a raft of indies including Sexy Brutale and The Witness.)

A lot of what Premier offers overlaps with the $6.99/month regular Origin Access service that also gives players access to new EA games five days early and also gives access to that deep well of older EA, indie and other publisher games.

An EA rep underscored to Kotaku that the main difference is that Premier subscribers will get full access to new releases. Regular non-Premier Access subscribers will only get limited trials that last several hours and then the option to purchase the full game at a discount.

(The discount is also available to Premier users, though seems to be more applicable to DLC, if the new games themselves are otherwise free with the sub.)

Paying $US10 ($13) more a month for Premier just to get more than 10-hour trials with new games could seem like a steep surcharge, but you could look at this another way: if you already desire two $US60 ($79) EA games in a 12-month span, subscribing to Premier for $US100 ($132) for the year gets you them and a whole lot more for $US20 ($26) less.

You can only play vault and game trial games from the regular Origin Access while you have an active subscription. If it lapses, your saves are kept, but the games are not, though you can always just buy the games, too. I'm checking with EA if that's the case with Premier as well.

EA offers a version of its Access program on Xbox One. There's no news about Premier coming to that platform. There's no Access program at all currently offered for PlayStation or Switch users.

EA gets knocked for a lot of things, but their subscription plans seem really good and really player-friendly.


Comments

    As a company EA are a scummy bunch.... but I have to admit I have an EA subscription on my Xbox. The reality is they always releases 2-3 games a year I end up buying, and for $40 a year it pays for itself pretty quickly.

    Seems a bit excessive @ $20 a month unless you really love all of the ea sports games and refuse to play last years version - you would probably be better off playing the 10hr trial and then either waiting 6 months for it to hit regular ea access or just buying the particular game you really like.

    Last edited 13/06/18 10:56 am

      Yeah, EA is shady but I love knowing if I ever get the urge to play a solid sports game or try something a bit different I can for $6-ish.

      I wish this value for money translated to the rest of their business.

    I mean, even if I just wanted Anthem and BF V it pretty well pays for itself just out of that

      My thoughts exactly... but I'm not sure if I even want them yet.

      As long as you have no intention of getting back into either of those a year later.
      With BF5 having free map packs and Anthem being billed as a long term thing, I for one probably would.

    The most alarming part of this concept is that once enough people are on the subscription programme, EA can start cutting corners on some of its titles. EA might well say, well, if people get their money's worth out of say FIFA and Anthem this year, no need to do anything other than squirt any other titles out, whether they are ready or not. Just greenlight a couple of major titles for each year and then the others can be done on a shoestring. Or even, we've had marketing suggest that most people liked Title 1 and Title 2 this year. Let's keep Title 3, which we were going to release this year, until next year.

    If this was crossplatform for PC & Xbox I'd be potentially interested. As it is though, far too pricey for me.

    "Hey everybody, BFV has no lootboxes, no premium pass!"
    what's that then?
    "that's an airlift, containing a single cosmetic item!"
    ok....and what's that?
    "that's origin access premiu...errr, I mean premier!"
    fantastic...

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