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EA Boss Nods To Core Gamers' Issue with Origin

By - Source: MCV | B 61 comments
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Nobody likes the new kid on the block apparently... at least not the core crowd.

EA's digital distribution platform, Origin, is essentially the new kid on the digital block, a block that has been dominated by Valve Software's Steam platform for almost a decade. Naturally customers are going to view Origin with some prejudice given that it's owned by the biggest games publisher on the Earth (for now). The service seemingly exists only to fatten EA's wallet even further while imposing annoying DRM.

Based on that, EA recognizes that -- just as they did with Steam back in 2003 to 2004 -- core gamers will have an issue with the new service until the construction dusts settles and customers see what the new platform has to offer.

"The hardcore sometimes has issues with Origin, but they seem to love these crowd-funded games," said Origin chief David DeMartini. "It was one of the few things we have done that wasn’t controversial and nobody had anything negative to say."

DeMartini refers to the company's new promotion which offers Kicksterter-funded games the opportunity to be listed free on Origin for the crutial first three months. That means the authors won't be required to pay EA publishing fees or share revenue. EA will make no money during this timeperiod save for collecting transaction fees stemming from credit card purchases and so on.

Still, despite what it's doing for the Kickstarter community, DeMartini realizes that whenever EA does anything in the industry, it generates a "certain reaction." However he insists that Origin isn't out to rule the world, that all the publisher wants to do is offer gamers another choice.

"People forget that when Steam launched, there was a lot of backlash from the core," DeMartini added. "Origin represents a change, and anytime EA does something that is significant in the industry, it generates a certain amount of reaction. Really it’s just to give customers an opportunity for choice."

Just last month, DeMartini said that Origin's first year was a huge success, stating that gamers downloaded around 12 million copies of the Origin software. He also said that EA wants Origin to be better than Steam, comparing both platforms to MySpace and Facebook.

"If MySpace had stayed the one answer in social networking and no one switched to Facebook, then we'd all be stuck on MySpace right now and we wouldn't have had the Facebook phenomenon," said DeMartini. "There are better mousetraps that ultimately get built out of this innovation and the only way you get to the innovation is to have other people try and do a better version of what someone has previously done. And that's what we're attempting to do on Origin."

"I didn't expect to be able to out-feature Steam within the first 12 months. But I'm quite optimistic we will differentiate ourselves as a service. We've built the foundation and now we are starting to add value to the service off of that foundation," he added.

'Dem sound like fightin' words.

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Top Comments
  • 34 Hide
    cdburner5911 , July 17, 2012 9:01 AM
    "Really it’s just to give customers an opportunity for choice."
    Really? How is BF3 (and other) being Origin exclusive, choice?
  • 30 Hide
    SmaugTD , July 17, 2012 9:05 AM
    The only "success" Origin had is because EA did not put their games one any other platform.
Other Comments
  • 7 Hide
    mouse24 , July 17, 2012 8:54 AM
    Misspelled Kickstarter. Just thought I should mention that.
  • 34 Hide
    cdburner5911 , July 17, 2012 9:01 AM
    "Really it’s just to give customers an opportunity for choice."
    Really? How is BF3 (and other) being Origin exclusive, choice?
  • 30 Hide
    SmaugTD , July 17, 2012 9:05 AM
    The only "success" Origin had is because EA did not put their games one any other platform.
  • 26 Hide
    Fabel , July 17, 2012 9:25 AM
    They made Origin mandatory on many titles; that is not giving choice. If EA brings BF3 to Steam without their crap I'll gladly pay full price for it.

    There is a long list of games that I want and the only reason that keeps me from getting them is crappy DRM.

    Btw you add value FIRST, then people come to your service. Forcing it using exclusive AAA titles... well for me EA is on my black list for some time now.

  • -1 Hide
    pharoahhalfdead , July 17, 2012 9:33 AM
    "It was one of the few things we have done that wasn’t controversial and nobody had anything negative to say."

    It's one of those 'hear no evil, see no evil," deals. They chose to ignore the community.

    But I know that just bcuz I don't like Origiin that doesn't mean that everybody else has a problem with it.
  • 2 Hide
    Fabel , July 17, 2012 9:33 AM
    Btw a Crysis Package is really cheap on Steam now, I really want it but... SecuROM is a no deal.

    If they want my money ever, they better kill SecuROM.

  • 15 Hide
    sanctoon , July 17, 2012 9:43 AM
    The only online games store I support is GOG.com, everything is DRM free, prices are region free, great community and they treat their customers great, I have about 120+ games on my GOG shelf.

    And I see them only getting bigger since they do new and release day title to these days, not only classic games.
  • 11 Hide
    mousseng , July 17, 2012 10:12 AM
    "all the publisher wants to do is offer gamers another choice."

    No, all they want to do is earn money, choice and consumers be damned.
  • 15 Hide
    southernshark , July 17, 2012 10:30 AM
    I'll never download the client for Origin. Screw EA. I hate that company and its sh!tty games.
  • 11 Hide
    oxiide , July 17, 2012 10:35 AM
    Origin is only as successful as Battlefield 3, Mass Effect 3 and The Old Republic are. Without their captive audience, it would just be another me-too gaming service that spies on its users and lacks most of what makes Steam awesome.
  • -3 Hide
    viciousteletuby28 , July 17, 2012 10:42 AM
    I'll stick to Steam until the EA servers get up to speed in my area. My EA games load in seconds and then spend up to a minute 'Connecting to EA Servers'.
  • 1 Hide
    giovanni86 , July 17, 2012 10:57 AM
    I don't have an issue with Origin being what it is, Steam was in that same boat when it first launched. But them trying to be better then Steam is not like facebook and myspace. Because they both were very much close together. I will admit that i have bought an Origin game because of a lower price then steam, but of course that was an EA title, and i believe that EA is very far behind Steam in terms of the service and the selection by a very long stretch. So saying that, Origin to me right now is just a inconvenience to even have it open just so i can play BF3.. Although i do hope, and this is just false hope, when BF3 dies which it will since BF3 had a very good launch that they make a in-game menu and release a mod kit to keep it alive and going. Origin in terms of pricing and sales is too far behind steam to even consider it a contender to Steam and its sales. Maybe do some ridiculous sales, add tons of games not just from there own titles but other publisher titles and they might take off, but i see this as just a way to piss other publishers off and have them string there own platform for there own games. Just my opinion. Who knows...
  • -1 Hide
    tomfreak , July 17, 2012 11:23 AM
    I Find it funny that he idiot enough use Myspace and facebook as an example for migration of platform. Moving between social site, re-adding friends on facebook DO NOT cost money. But Many people have huge pile of games stuck on steam now. Unless EA start offering free service to transfer all the games library people has on steam to Origin. People will still stick with Steam as long as they are doing fine.

    how many of u here migrate from Myspace to Facebook "cost" you a lot of money?
  • 2 Hide
    edwarddc , July 17, 2012 11:38 AM
    "EA wants Origin to be better than Steam, comparing both platforms to MySpace and Facebook"

    But, at least for now, Steam is Facebook and Origin is MySpace. Steam is cheaper, easier, sexier, and has a much better catalog.
  • 0 Hide
    techguy911 , July 17, 2012 11:47 AM
    edwarddc"EA wants Origin to be better than Steam, comparing both platforms to MySpace and Facebook"But, at least for now, Steam is Facebook and Origin is MySpace. Steam is cheaper, easier, sexier, and has a much better catalog.


    Not to mention buggy when i first used Origin to buy starwars the old republic it did not realize that i actually bought it and would not give me a game code.
    Although EA fixed the problem this should have been tested more before rolling it out to the public.
    Buying a digital copy of the game should be cheaper that"s the whole idea of digital distribution.
  • 0 Hide
    back_by_demand , July 17, 2012 11:47 AM
    john_4STEAM has me steamed too. I picked up a game of the Fallout Ultimate Edition cheap to play this winter and now own two copies, one of them is standard. Can I sell it? NO THIS is all about DRM and stopping used software sales. Never mind I was just going to give the game away to a friend. F*ck both of the services.

    Do what everyone else does and sell a toothpick on eBay, with the game as a gift item free
  • 0 Hide
    tehTyrant , July 17, 2012 11:47 AM
    soldier37Also like to mention some pc games coming out will now be $70 ie (Medal of Honor Warfighter). Really EA?


    That is the Deluxe version. The Limited Edition version, which I assume is the normal version is $59.99.

    I don't like Origin that much either, they don't really have many good sales, there's not very big library and the software itself is sluggish, locks up a lot and sometimes you can't even connect. Steam is somewhat slow as well, but not nearly as bad a Origin.

    Origin is meh right now, but I am not gonna let a gripes with it get in the way with playing some games I like with my friends.
  • 5 Hide
    zachusaman , July 17, 2012 11:55 AM
    difference between EA and steam from 2003? valve is a likable company and steam is a good service.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 17, 2012 11:58 AM
    STFU EA!
  • -3 Hide
    AsTheDeath , July 17, 2012 12:11 PM
    Ah, but Steam is a memory-hogging DRM-like service with an offline mode that doesn't work reliably! How is it possible that they have become so popular?

    EA, if you want Origin to become successful, you're going to have to either cut DRM, cut prices or offer loads of bonus content to make up for the first two (sounds like GOG, anyone?). The only reason I use Steam is because it's ridiculously cheap (during the sales).

    And please, if you're so stubborn on 'we can do DLC / our own game distribution better than Steam' then actually do it. I'm still (after what? 2 years?) waiting for an ME2 DLC sale. The original Alice on Origin would be nice too, considering you didn't forget to give the console owners a copy.
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