You mean Battlefield 4 wasn't already early access? Could have fooled me.
The concept of "early access" games has really taken off on Steam in recent years, with developers being able to sell an early, alpha version of their game to eager fans, whose feedback will help develop the final game. There are some drawbacks, of course, such as some developers abandoning their games before they are finished, leaving the early access buyers high and dry, but when it's done right, it can be a pretty good system. DICE and EA games are now, somewhat ironically, considering using such a system for its future Battlefield titles.
We have nothing to announce, but we are having discussions when it comes to [early access]," DICE general manager Karl Magnus Troedsson told Game Informer. "It comes not from a business perspective, but more from a perspective of if it would help us have a stable launch of the game."
If early access were to come to a head, Troedsson said he would like to involve the players as much as possible in its inception. "We would ask our players in a controlled way," he says. "We probably wouldn't open the floodgates for everyone, but we might do it for geographical territories or people who bought the last game. Yes, it is something we are considering, not from a business standpoint, but from one of creating quality in our products."
The irony comes from the fact that many felt that Battlefield 4, with its incredibly rocky launch, followed by the frequent discovery of game-breaking bugs, led many to believe it was more of an alpha product than a finished game. It got to the point where DICE had to actually halt DLC development so it could focus on fixing the broken game.
Source: Game Informer