EA Access: A Perfect Move
This. Is. Brilliant. Completely and utterly B-R-I-L-L-I-A-N-T.
So in a move similar to Games For Gold for Xbox systems or PS Plus for Playstation platforms, or more accurately Playstaion Now, Electronic Arts have announced EA Access: a service which will not only allow paid subscribers to play a number of older EA licensed games, but promises to give early access to upcoming triple-A productions such as Dragon Age: Inquisition and Madden Fifteen. It even offers discounts.
Its hard to impossible to look at such an offer and not see it as a good deal. But then this is Electronic Arts we are talking about. Two time concurrent winner of the worst company in the United States Award. The publisher who ruined titles such as Dungeon Keeper, The Sims and Dead Space with micro-transactions and unnecessary, forced online conditions. This sounds like the literal Devil offering free kittens and candy from his van. There has to be something up.
But no. Put down twenty-nine, ninety-nine in legal U.S. tender - or credit - for one year, or four, ninety-nine for just one month and you are in. So it is really two dollars and fifty cents a month for access to a whole library of titles which will even include unreleased sure-fire hits. A fifty percent savings, since only a complete and total idiot would pay sixty dollars over the course of twelve months for something like this. So twelve, two-fifty payments early and likely recurring it is.
And for that money you get to play games like Madden Fourteen, Battlefield Four and Peggle Two. At least as a start with later titles introduced, or removed, at EA's discretion. The entirety of the content in the advertised vault could be a relatively small and rotating pool, will certainly be small as the service starts up on a console which itself isn't yet a year old, but then even an automatic library of games isn't really EA Access' main draw.
More than likely what will bring subscribers will be early access to the latest and upcoming iterations of FIFA, Dragon Age and Mass Effect. The chance to play titles, unless fellow subscribers, five days before anyone else. With further options of continuing play where you left off if you decide to buy the game, while getting a discount on the title so long as its a digital download. The method the industry insists is the future as it makes it the future. Really, that's about the worst that can be said about what EA Access offers.
Really, nothing else can be said. Given that as a service exclusive to the Xbox One, the fanboy flag has been firmly planted.
Maybe the case could be presented that since early access to new titles is the service's main strength that demos, released once or maybe twice a year, are now officially a paid commodity, but such would only be dismissed or agreed with based on camp alignment. Likewise pointing out that the older games used to pad and hide such a deduction are wholly under the control and whim of Electronic Arts, who have only held the best interest of all gamers first. No title under their umbrella has ever been compromised because they strictly held to release dates which favored their stock price.
Which reminds me: wonder how long until Capcom, and others, copy this...