Choice and competition are too important to EA to give them up for Origin, says the publisher’s European boss.
Jens Uwe Intat, the head of EA in Europe, says that he “can’t see” the publisher making its games Origin exclusive in the near future. He said that EA only wants what is best for consumers, which includes having its games on a variety of digital distribution platforms.
Despite high profile games like Battlefield 3 being Origin only, Uwe Intat said that EA valued competition and consumer choice too highly to start yanking its games from services like Impulse or Direct2Drive. He even said that the schism between it and Steam, which saw a number of EA games disappearing from the service, wasn’t irreparable. “You should never say never,” he said.
He also said that EA’s aspirations for Origin extended beyond its own games, and people might be able to use the service to buy games from other publishers in the future. “We are discussing with other publishers to distribute their games,” he said. “[Other publishers’ games] May very well be [sold on Origin]. But the key is really to develop an impressive consumer experience where people are happy to play and buy games.”
It’s worth pointing out that Uwe Intat didn’t categorically say that EA won’t make its games Origin exclusive, and if it did, it wouldn’t be that different to what Valve did with Half-Life 2 back when Steam was first getting started. Of course, there’s a lot more to Steam’s success other than it being the only place to pick up Half-Life 2 on the PC, but it’s a mistake to completely discount it, too.