Sony: EA Access is Poor Value for PlayStation Users

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Sony: EA Access is Poor Value for PlayStation Users

EA Access 310x

EA Access is Xbox One only because Sony believes a specific program from EA does not represent good value.

Yesterday EA announced its new subscription program, EA Access. The program is only available on Xbox One, and Sony has clarified why the subscription will not be available on the PS4.

A Sony representative spoke to Game Informer and indicated that the company has no intentions of including EA Access on the PS4. "We evaluated the EA Access subscription offering and decided that it does not bring the kind of value PlayStation customers have come to expect," the representative said. "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 $5 a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer."

For $30 a year or $5 a month, EA Access subscribers can access a collection of EA games on Xbox One to download and play. The service is currently in beta and offers four titles: Battlefield 4, FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, and Peggle 2. Other games such as Dragon Age: Inquisition and NHL 25 are coming soon to the program.

Sony could always change its mind, but it's confident in its own PlayStation Plus membership program.

Source: Game Informer

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I respect that. Good for Sony, standing up to the worst company in the world, 2 years running.

There may (and is likely) more to this story than Sony is letting on. I was going to say that I can't see EA offering this to just MS, considering the PS4 is the platform with the larger install base, but that's exactly what EA has done (thus far) with Titanfall, so it's not unprecedented for them to "be in bed with" MS over Sony. Still, my initial reaction was that this was a partnering with EA & MS that never included Sony in the first place, and Sony is simply trying to save face. What difference does it make? To me, none. But when this story first broke I did find myself thinking along the lines of Sony's logic in that "I'm not paying for a subscription service (PS+ or XBL), and then paying more for an additional service on top of that, exclusive to EA and their games.

I've been without an online gaming subscription for some time now thinking "I have to pay for internet, now I have to pay to play online as well?" That worked back when I had a lot more time to put into multiplayer gaming. Now, my time is fleeting, and paying for yet another subscription just doesn't appeal to me. Let alone tacking on one that will give me access to Battlefied 4. La di da!

Well it's nice to know that Sony seems to think that its entire userbase are all children incapable of thinking for themselves whether something is worth a certain amount.

Oh, and I wonder why PS Plus subscriptions have shot up? It couldn't be anything to do with basically making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Andy Shandy:
Well it's nice to know that Sony seems to think that its entire userbase are all children incapable of thinking for themselves whether something is worth a certain amount.

Oh, and I wonder why PS Plus subscriptions have shot up? It couldn't be anything to do with basically making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Playing devil's advocate: who will pay for the bandwidth and the servers with it's maintenance? It's not cheep at all. This goes for all companies offering online features to their customers.

Edit for CAPTCHA: "i made tea"; nice idea, will make some. Thank you kindly.

Man, I sure am going to feel ripped off when I get a 1 month sub for $5, download and play the new dragon age, then unsub.

So ripped off.

vonSanneck:

Andy Shandy:
Well it's nice to know that Sony seems to think that its entire userbase are all children incapable of thinking for themselves whether something is worth a certain amount.

Oh, and I wonder why PS Plus subscriptions have shot up? It couldn't be anything to do with basically making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Playing devil's advocate: who will pay for the bandwidth and the servers with it's maintenance? It's not cheep at all. This goes for all companies offering online features to their customers.

Edit for CAPTCHA: "i made tea"; nice idea, will make some. Thank you kindly.

Oh, they may well be using the PS Plus money for improved infrastructure/maintenance costs/etc - although as someone who has a PS4, I can't say I notice much improvement from the PS3 - but it's rather disingenuous to claim that the reason that PS Plus subscriptions have shot up is down to its all round value - and I say this as someone who loves PS Plus. The reason that the vast majority of people will be buying it is to play online, nothing else.

Elijin:
Man, I sure am going to feel ripped off when I get a 1 month sub for $5, download and play the new dragon age, then unsub.

So ripped off.

"for games like Dragon Age: Inqusition. "Starting 5 days before release, you'll be able to try the game for at least two hours and then save your progress," he writes. "Once you purchase the digital or physical copy, you can use your save game and continue the experience."

So you will pay 5$ for a demo...

milijanko:

Elijin:
Man, I sure am going to feel ripped off when I get a 1 month sub for $5, download and play the new dragon age, then unsub.

So ripped off.

"for games like Dragon Age: Inqusition. "Starting 5 days before release, you'll be able to try the game for at least two hours and then save your progress," he writes. "Once you purchase the digital or physical copy, you can use your save game and continue the experience."

So you will pay 5$ for a demo...

No, I'll wait something like 6 months, and enable the service when its a full game. Not unreasonable to expect to have to wait to play the newest of games on a service like this. After all, if the game was available on release, why would people pay full price for it?

vonSanneck:

Playing devil's advocate: who will pay for the bandwidth and the servers with it's maintenance?

Ummm, the developers from whom you bought the game and are running the online game components on their servers? The subscription money isn't going to them.

When is Microsoft going to learn to stop announcing stuff first? Whenever the backlash is big enough, Sony comes by and says "and yeah, we're totally not doing that" while behind the scenes they hastily cancel plans to do that. And they get to look like the good guys. It's like Microsoft felt bad about "winning" last generation so they're doing everything they can to shoot themselves in the foot this time around.

Elijin:

milijanko:

Elijin:
Man, I sure am going to feel ripped off when I get a 1 month sub for $5, download and play the new dragon age, then unsub.

So ripped off.

"for games like Dragon Age: Inqusition. "Starting 5 days before release, you'll be able to try the game for at least two hours and then save your progress," he writes. "Once you purchase the digital or physical copy, you can use your save game and continue the experience."

So you will pay 5$ for a demo...

No, I'll wait something like 6 months, and enable the service when its a full game. Not unreasonable to expect to have to wait to play the newest of games on a service like this. After all, if the game was available on release, why would people pay full price for it?

No, as I understand this whole EA thingy, it is a $5 a month subscription model that allows you to get some EA products at a slightly lower price, get demos and access to games a few days earlier.
I haven't read anywhere that it actually gives players full, free and unrestricted access to any games at all.

It seems to be just a $30 a year EA marketing platform that gives away coupons and demos.

I wonder if this has more to do with Sony not wanting competing subscription services on their own console. Of course, it also looks bad if you console is home to multiple subscription services. A lot of people don't want more than one out of principle. EA should have announced this first for their Origin service. Except EA probably cares more about locking in new costumers than pleasing the ones they have

Andy Shandy:
making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Have you ever considered that might include a lot of people? I see posts all the time about animosity towards online gaming. And I'm one of them. The only multiplayer games I'd bother with would be free to play. And I would never subscribe to ps+ for online gaming. I do it anyway because I like the free games. Its not like xbox where you can't even use Netflix and video streaming apps unless you're a gold member

A bit hypocritical of them considering the pricing for PS Now is still so absurd. They're not wrong, but it's definitely hypocritical.

P.S. Thanks

PoolCleaningRobot:

Andy Shandy:
making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Have you ever considered that might include a lot of people? I see posts all the time about animosity towards online gaming. And I'm one of them. The only multiplayer games I'd bother with would be free to play. And I would never subscribe to ps+ for online gaming. I do it anyway because I like the free games. Its not like xbox where you can't even use Netflix and video streaming apps unless you're a gold member

Oh, it probably does. Hell, I'm one myself, at least on Sony systems (my friends own Microsoft systems, so I play multiplatform multiplayer stuff there). But you've got to be taking the piss if you think that the reason PS Plus suddenly shot up that much wasn't down to it being needed on PS4 for most games.

On the surface, this seems like it actually does offer value to the consumers.

But, even though this really doesn't need to be said, this is fucking EA. A company that is, obviously, not on our side.

Naturally I'm extremely skeptical about this. In fact I'd say I'm damn near dismissing the entire thing out of sheer cynicism at this point. Can you really blame me though? This is fucking EA. It sounds fine on paper. But EA being in completely control of their own subscription service sounds like a trainwreck waiting to happen and one hell of a slippery slope. If EA weren't stonewalled by Sony on this, I wouldn't be surprised if there was immediate exclusive "special content" available only for EA subscribers.

Let's not forget about Playstation Now, which is probably also going to be subscription based:
http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/07/30/sony-may-offer-a-subscription-option-for-playstation-now

Although who knows if EA will bother supporting PSNow at all thanks to be denied here. We all remember what happened with Dragon Age 2 on Steam. Yet, I think it might be possible EA will still allow their current gen releases onto PSNow if it ends up being a success. Why would EA intentionally cut off access to their games from PS4, which has the largest audience by a pretty wide margin? Who knows.

With that it seems a lot more obvious that Sony denied this service to make their own more enticing. Having PS+, PSNow, and EA Access all on one console does sound like a mess. I don't know anyone who truly enjoys being subscribed to multiple different services that basically offer the same thing.

JenSeven:
snip

Err, did you read it, at all?

Im going to answer my own question, because you clearly didnt. In its current form (beta testing the service) you have full access to Battlefield 4, FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, and Peggle 2. With 'More titles to be added over time to the vault'.

So sure, I wont sign up now, as they dont interest me. But in time, this service should prove to be very interesting. Especially as an Australian, where a full price title is $100 and can stay there for a year after release if popular. I will view this as a rental service, and a 95 dollar saving will be hard to convince me Im being cheated on (Well, probably something between 95-90 anyway, I imagine with the dollar rate, us Aussies might be looking at a slightly higher fee.)

The amount of automatic hate on this website for EA and MS is downright tiring. People dont even get past the first few lines without having already decided that its bad because EA, rather than assessing things on their actual worth.

I give up!

You would think it would be a bad deal for EA too, if everyone played DA: Inquisition and other AAA games through this service, wouldn't that mean that they wouldn't be able to earn back the budget and turn a profit on all their AAA stuff?

It's cheap but i don't think there's any recent (or upcoming) videogame from EA that i would want to pay for, except for maybe Mass Effect 1-2 and Bulletstorm, three games i allready own. Might work with a better company, wouldn't mind subscribng to Arc Systems or something like that.

Andy Shandy:
Oh, and I wonder why PS Plus subscriptions have shot up? It couldn't be anything to do with basically making pretty much mandatory on PS4, unless you exclusively play offline and free-to-play games.

Why wouldn't they? They tried showing there better free service during ps3 and the sheep showed them on the 360 that they were more than willing to shell out all that cash to play online. Given sony's huge financial problems why in the world would they pass up that free money? And ps+ isn't the rip off live was on the 360. Its well worth the cost even if you didn't need it for multiplayer.

I hate to point out the obvious... but no one is FORCING players to get this. Just saying. I suppose for folks into this sort of thing, its cool to have the option.

Leave it up to Sony to let everyone know how they're totally in it for the gamers. And zombie games. Lots and lots of zombie games.

tdylan:
but that's exactly what EA has done (thus far) with Titanfall

It may be worth noting that Microsoft stumped up a 'significant' portion of Titanfall's development cost to make sure it never saw the light of Sony.

In this situation I expect that EA has had to ask permission from both parties to put up a secondary subscription within the subscription and Sony either told them flatly no or wanted a bigger chunk of any income it generated or wanted it somehow integrated into PS+. Much the same way Valve wouldn't let EA run sales through their games without involving Steam I can't see Sony or Microsoft allowing a service that essentially cuts them out the revenue stream.

EA access is so much of a shit concept that Sony is refusing to place it anywhere NEAR their console.

Still do not get why people think EA access is a good thing. It seems WAY cheaper to just buy/rent the games instead of subscribing to a service for them.

You know, after reading the original article about EA's service, I realized I've bought maybe 2 or 3 EA games in the last ten years, and they were dirt cheap used copies, that I barely played. I wonder how many other people might have only a few games from from recent years from such a major publisher. Also, considering how they treated Battlefield 4 and especially Sim City, the amount of of people who will probably not touch an EA game has gone up dramatically. EA still has tons of customers and is in no danger of dying, but dealing with this extra service and potentially more if Ubisoft and Activision want a piece of the pie might be something Sony doesn't want to mess with. Maybe it would be better if publishers offered deals like this on PS Plus and GFG, but that means they don't get as much money and the consumer actually gets a good deal.

EA Access really only caters to fans of their franchises. Sony knows most PS4 users won't even touch that service since it's limited to one publisher's games and PS Plus is required for online play anyway. (Some PSN users are probably still sore about having to pay for online multiplayer when moving to the PS4. Whereas, xbox users have had to foot the bill since the beginning and are more acclimated to paying for something.) Another thing is the limited number of games in the "Vault" right now and the fact that we're talking about EA here. How often are they going to add more free games? It of course can't be monthly right now with so few EA published PS4/Xbone titles, but they never mentioned the frequency of releases.

So, Sony thinks as I do, that it's a transparent and poorly-laid-out scheme. Good for them.

I fully agree with Sony. This isn't an Anti-EA thing by any means. I really like EA's idea, but I don't want to have the service JUST be for EA games because, as Sony said, the value really isn't there. If this extended to other companies as well, (even just handful like Deep Silver, Sega, Ubisoft, and 2k THAT would be worth it). I get it's unlike to get a rental service with EVERY company, but unless you can get more than one (or that one is someone with an extensive library of fun games like Nintendo, Sega, or maybe Sony) it really isn't worth it long run.

Andy Shandy:
Well it's nice to know that Sony seems to think that its entire userbase are all children incapable of thinking for themselves whether something is worth a certain amount.

You know I've seen these kind of comments a lot more then I thought I would and it's really perplexing. EA essentially released PS Plus but with just ea games. Sure it closes the platform but I'm glad to see them do some quality control. There is nothing inherently wrong with a self regulated market and man games needs a little bit of restraint like this.

Andy Shandy:
Well it's nice to know that Sony seems to think that its entire userbase are all children incapable of thinking for themselves whether something is worth a certain amount.

Oh, it's not that. They sell God Mode and RIPD, so they're not concerned with value or quality or even care for their consumers. It's a PR move, and possibly covering something else up.

I think people are willing to buy into it because of bad will towards both EA and Microsoft.

OH SHIT, gotta get me my Peggle 2 subscription!

I like people mocking EA for worst company ever while while they've done some shit with games recently, they've also given away a load of games for either dirt cheap or free with DLC included. Yes they're are EVER so terrible, let's not look at Square for FFVII and FFVIII on PC having extra DRM that requires your information to play the game you bought, or Ubisoft for skewing things with video cards or their incredibly irritating history of DRM and general distaste for people playing on a different platform. Rockstar for loads of DRM, crap ports (even to another console), etc. Microsoft with offensive shit-tastic DRM schemes that yes didn't make it out but boy were they ready to force this. Not saying EA is great or anything but for goodness sake worst people? Have a look at your local banks if you need worst company in the world.

The real reason Sony isn't accepting this? Because their own Playstation Now service has prices that are flat out offensive, and EA is probably providing a competitive edge to those prices that make it hard to justify Sony's own pricing.

Kameburger:
There is nothing inherently wrong with a self regulated market and man games needs a little bit of restraint like this.

And yet, it's less than a month before God Mode goes back on the discounted list on the PSN store in a desperate attempt to move it.

Yes, EA Access is where quality control is needed.

So is EA going to get all pissy and abandon the PS4 like they did with Nintendo? No? lol

There's definitely something Sony isn't mentioning there, because fucking nobody in AAA actually considers the consumer-value of what they're selling beyond the market standard pricing.

PS Plus seems like the obvious place to start, but personally I don't think that's it. Or rather that there's more to it than just being a competitor to PS Plus.

This is completely blind speculation, but I suspect low royalty yields for Sony might be involved.

Sony is concerned about value for their customers? I guess that explains those memory cards for the Vita...

Snotnarok:
I like people mocking EA for worst company ever while while they've done some shit with games recently, they've also given away a load of games for either dirt cheap or free with DLC included. Yes they're are EVER so terrible, let's not look at Square for FFVII and FFVIII on PC having extra DRM that requires your information to play the game you bought, or Ubisoft for skewing things with video cards or their incredibly irritating history of DRM and general distaste for people playing on a different platform. Rockstar for loads of DRM, crap ports (even to another console), etc. Microsoft with offensive shit-tastic DRM schemes that yes didn't make it out but boy were they ready to force this. Not saying EA is great or anything but for goodness sake worst people? Have a look at your local banks if you need worst company in the world.

The real reason Sony isn't accepting this? Because their own Playstation Now service has prices that are flat out offensive, and EA is probably providing a competitive edge to those prices that make it hard to justify Sony's own pricing.

Isn't Playstation Now all about the past-gen games, though? Don't get me wrong, I agree Now's prices are ridiiiiculous, and I snorted with scarcely repressed laughter when Sony used the words 'not enough value' without a trace of irony, but I find it more likely that if Sony is concerned about competition, it'd be competition against PS+, not Playstation Now; short of cross-platform sports games, or Sony deciding to start adding PS4 games to the service next, I don't see many of EA's Vault games ending up on Playstation Now. o.o

OT: Now, the question becomes, what will EA's response be. :o More specifically, assuming PS+ ever builds up to releasing old AAA games, I wonder if EA will keep their titles off the service in the hopes that Sony will give in and allow EA Access whatever. If this service was only being released in North America, I could see both EA and Sony stubbornly holding their ground, waiting for the other to blink first; though Sony does have a lead in the U.S., there's still (an admittedly steadily dwindling) chance of Microsoft turning things around, especially if EA jumps behind them to help push. In the short term, even the long term, EA might be content keeping their stuff out of PS+, in the hope that Sony will eventually cave in and let them host their own service.

But Europe is preeeetty much Sonyland, and keeping their games off PS+ services, particularly the European one, is akin to waving goodbye to a substantial part of the market there. If Sony holds their ground (basically, if Sony continues to outsell the Xbox One and has no reason to backtrack on anything,) I could see EA grudgingly deciding that 'Some money gained from PS+' is better than 'No money gained from a service Sony won't allow on their platform anyway.'

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