Breaking Down the New EA Access Subscription Service

Posted July 30th, 2014 at 1:15 pm


EA Access was announced yesterday and based on the reaction there appears to be quite a lot of interest in the concept of a subscription service which provides a library of older games to play and pre-release play periods for new games. Many who were aware of EA Sports Season Ticket liked what that provided too, which EA Access appears to have improved upon in several areas and offers less in others, but that program was never actively advertised by the company so it never took off. They will likely push EA Access much more aggressively.

Interestingly it seems the exclusivity to Xbox One is not because of a special arrangement with Microsoft, but Sony not feeling that it was a beneficial program to offer. The thinking may be to avoid it becoming the norm with publishers to offer their own subscriptions on top of what consumers are already paying for with PlayStation Plus, and prevent competition with PS Now (which comparatively to Access is an awful value). If EA Access turns out to be popular though, there’s little doubt they would adopt it as well, so as to eliminate what would be perceived as an advantage for the competition. Sony is already getting heat for the decision to block their consumers from having the simple choice to subscribe if they desire to do so.

In the video podcast below I’m joined by T.J. Lauerman (@ThatSportsGamer) to discuss the EA Access program. We explain what it is, how it compares to Season Ticket, and where it could be leading consumers towards for the future.

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  • alexRG

    Looks like arrogant Sony is on its way back. Why wont they let me decide if its worth it or not? Stupid stupid stupid.

  • Keith.

    “We evaluated the EA Access subscription offering and decided that it does not bring the kind of value PlayStation customers have come to expect,”

    Exactly, Sony! That’s what I’m sayin’!

    • It’s so hypocritical though on their part. Look at PS Now which is a joke in its pricing. Or how they have Madden 25 for $50, and FIFA 14 for $60 on the PS Store. If now they think they should be judging value for YOU and everyone else, they need to pull those games off because they represent horrific value.

      I think you can judge whether EA Access is the right value for yourself. You shouldn’t want these companies taking away your right to decide on your own.

      Of course we know this probably isn’t the real reason, but it was an awful PR move to use it as the excuse.

      • Think before you speak

        Dude you dont get it. PS Now is in Beta and prices are not fixed. Not to mention that they are planning a yearly fee for it as well as individual renting schemes.

  • That’s just outright false. Even if you’re buying used, you can’t get Madden right now for under $15. FIFA can’t be had for less than $35 or so. Battlefield is probably right around $25. So if someone has interests in those games, paying $5 a month or getting the year subscription makes more sense than buying them individually.

    • MoneyMayweather

      pasta destroyed you man.

    • Wake up

      actually what you just said is out right false. He said all the older games can be had for cheaper. not Madden, Fifa, BF. So to list though prices doesnt make sense because he wasnt referring to them as cheaper.

      • I still don’t think any “older games” can be had for cheaper by purchasing them outright. At the moment, there are no “older” games involved in this regardless. They don’t have a backlog of games cause the system is so new. If they were involving 360/PS3 games then yeah.

  • Just because of EA Access? Or something else? Things have definitely balanced a little more since then. Microsoft not having baseball will still hurt for those who care about that sport…though most probably have already gone PS4 so the effect will be less going forward.

    • Brian

      Yeah, there was no way I was purchasing the Xbox One without a quality baseball game. I learned as much from the last gen consoles.

      • Salty222

        How long do you MLB the show will be made for ps3?

      • D-DAWG-ROCKS

        Not that PS has a “QUALITY” baseball game either. This year’s release was complete garbage!!

  • Livest

    good to see sony telling their customers what’s good for them

  • Skihawks

    I had EA Ticket and the value was awful. Access, on the other hand, sounds awesome. To have access to older games boosts the value. Then to be able to play new releases almost a week early, and not all sports games mind you, makes this a no brainer to subscribe to.

    I think EA will get this right. I just wish EA Ticket subscribers got a bit of a discount since we are loyal.

    Can’t wait til this releases.

  • Yankeesfan

    Completely disagree. Without a baseball game, Xbone can not surpass PS4 as the sports games console of this gen. I would rather have a quality MLB game released every year, than 5 day pre-release access and a back log of games I probably already own or can get very cheap. That being said, it sucks PS4 doesnt offer this service. In the long run, it may be a good thing Sony stands their ground. PS Now will probably have greater coverage of games and whos knows maybe even EA games for a yearly subscription. Also it isnt exclusive which means Sony can pull a 180 like Microsoft often does. I be much more worried a good MLB game isnt heading to Xbone for a several years.

  • swimfunk

    ““PlayStation Plus memberships are up more than 200% since the launch of PlayStation 4, which shows that gamers are looking for memberships that offer a multitude of services, across various devices, for one low price.”

    Wonder why memberships are up 200% since ps4 launch??? Gee, maybe it’s the fact that you are now making it mandatory if we want to play online? I love how Sony tries to spin this and tell me how I should send my money. This is coming from a PS4 only customer too.

    I mean I get it Sony doesn’t want us to get last years games for free with this membership. This will take away from Sony Store purchases. I’m not sure how many purchases are made on these games after their season is over but FIFA & Madden are the two biggest sports in the world so I would think they still get some transactions over the course of a year.

    As for myself, I don’t even know if I would get it if offered on the PS4. I had the EA Season Ticket the past couple of years mainly for NHL & Madden. It would have been nice to get a chance to decide for myself if I thought it was good value.

  • So each person has to factor all of it in (“Vault” games, early play periods, discount on digital) to determine on an individual basis if that is good value. It’s not a simple yes/no thing. It’s worth $30 if a person was considering buying one or more of those games. Or if they really enjoy playing games early. Or some combination of interest in the two. That might be a terrific value for one person and a poor value for someone who doesn’t care one bit about the games or want to pay anything to play a few days early.

    • Real American Hero

      Not that it matters but, agreed!

  • slgrant39

    There is no incentive to purchase down loadable games. I would consider purchasing digital games if they were sold at $40. Sports games will flourish once EA get out of the way. EA have no intention of producing great games. Year after year they continue to show how incompetent they are as a game developer.