BF3Blog reports that Electronic Arts and Valve Software are in late-stage talks to get Battlefield 3 on the Steam digital distribution platform. The two are supposedly very close to reaching an agreement over sales of the game's DLC content -- the very factor that has kept Battlefield 3 off Steam thus far. But if all goes well and the details are ironed out, the highly-anticipated shooter should be available on Valve's platform in time for its October 25 launch.
Earlier this year Electronic Arts pulled several games off Steam after it launched its own rival digital distribution platform, Origin. The company stated that the games were removed due to some restrictive Steam rules concerning updates and DLC sales: EA wants to do business directly with the gamer, and Valve wants it done through Steam. Unable to reach an agreement, EA said its PC games would be available on other platforms, but certain titles and special editions would in fact remain as Origin exclusives, including Battlefield 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic.
"We want to be able to support our customer directly," said COO Peter Moore at Gamescom. "If there are opportunities to do that, then we'll do that. If Valve, through Steam are willing to allow us to do that, then there are no issues whatsoever. In the instances where you're not seeing a game on Steam, it's primarily because we can't deal directly with our consumer to resolve issues and do things we want to be able to do."
Earlier this week EA Europe's Jens Uwe Intat said that EA and Valve still have a good working relationship despite the dispute, a relationship that will likely see Valve continuing to choose EA as publisher and distributor of its boxed products.
"Valve is run by very clever people, and I would say that's also true for Electronic Arts, we're all good business people," Intat told GamesIndustry.biz. "So, Valve, when they're looking for distribution for their products, looking at which publisher could actually do that, then I think we're the best publisher on the planet, both in Europe and North America. We have a long history of distributing Valve products and I think for every title they will look for who will do the best job. There's no strain on that relationship because we're competing in one space."
Intat points out that every first party manufacturer is a partner of EA when it comes to distributing their product, but they're also a competitor when it comes to their own software. "I think, as an industry, we're pretty good at competing and co-operating at the same time," he added.