Game developer Electronic Arts shocked the world when it announced that users would be able to download Madden NFL 25, Battlefield 4 and other games for just $4.99 a month if they have an Xbox One. Now, EA is making sure users realize just how good of a deal EA Access is, confirming that once a game makes it into EA Access for subscribers to download, it won’t ever leave the service.
Electronic Arts’ Peter Moore talked in-depth about the experience Xbox One users can expect when they sign up for the company’s EA Access subscription service with CVG earlier this week. In that conversation Moore makes it pretty clear why he thinks Xbox One users will want to sign up for the service and how valuable he thinks it is.
“I think one of the key things is that once a game goes into the [EA Access] vault it stays there, it’s not going to be taken out, that’s a commitment we’ve made,” he told the gaming news outlet.
Moore went on to clarify the company’s position on making new games available to users. More specifically, he clarified the time frame around when users can expect more games to be added. According to Moore, the company simply doesn’t have a standard protocol for adding new games to EA Access, saying that the selection of games made available through EA Access will be “substantial,” but the company has “no template” for when a game should be added. In effect, there’s no surefire way to know when a game like Madden NFL 15 will be added to EA Access.
That’s a shame considering some users were probably hoping that EA Access could be a full-on substitute for purchasing physical or even digital copies of games made and published by Electronic Arts. In effect, it could have answered the age-old question of whether users should upgrade to the latest version of the company’s sports franchises or hold out.
Even still, EA Access is the most exciting thing to happen to games publishing in a very long time. With the Xbox One and PS4, game developers are required to make digital versions of their titles available on the same day that a disc-version arrives on store shelves. The general idea is to make purchasing video games just as convenient as it is on a phone or a tablet. One of the few things making digital video games less convenient than traditional disc-based games was their price tag: many developers and publishers don’t really have a proven track record of lowering the cost of their digital games to compete with those on store shelves. It doesn’t help that high-profile titles cost $59.99 new. that’s a far cry from the $1.99 sweet spot found on iOS, Android and Windows Phone.
EA Access makes that cost barrier a thing of the past. EA Access allows Xbox One users to download as many games as they want from what Electronic Arts is calling The Vault. If they don’t like the game they can delete it and move on to another. If they do like the game they can keep it for as long as they’re paying for EA Access. If a user stops paying for EA Access the game stops working, but users still have their game save and can subscribe again and download the title at any moment. Best of all, games downloaded through EA Access still work as you might expect. You can still record video clips and earn achievements from titles downloaded through EA Access.
Electronic Arts kicked off a beta of EA Access just last month. Today, The Vault consists of just four titles, FIFA 14, Peggle 2, Madden NFL 25, & Battlefield 4. That might seem light, but EA insists that it’ll add more major titles to The Vault as time goes on.