EA launches 'Origin' online store

EA announced a new online storefront and beta application, aimed at providing Steam-like features built specifically for EA's first-party and partner-published games.


EA announced a new online storefront called Origin today, aimed at providing an dedicated home for EA and EA Partners games, with features similar to competing services.

The store already houses roughly 150 games, and EA promises it will offer downloads of limited edition versions of games like Battlefield 3, FIFA 12, Alice: Madness Returns, and Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning. The announcement also teased that digital purchases of Star Wars: The Old Republic will be exclusive to Origin.

The company also launched a beta application, which can be downloaded through the site. It lets you create a friends list, check on your friends' gaming habits, and download EA PC games. It also functions as an overlay during games, not unlike Steam. A mobile application is also planned, to play EA's smartphone games and check on their friends list features from their phone.

"Origin is a game service with two fundamental features," said VP of global online at EA, David DeMartini, in the announcement. "It's a download service for the very best content from EA and its partners. It also offers a social function which, over time, will connect to a player's profile with friends list and a cross-platform feed that shows what your friends are playing and where." He also promised that the company will be adding new features and services in the coming months.

"We're committed to offering consumers direct access to great content and community in a way they have never experienced before," said CEO John Riccitiello. "Today we're launching Origin.com and the Origin beta application. Over time, Origin will grow with new functionality and unique new content that consumers can't get anywhere else."

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    June 3, 2011 10:00 AM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, EA launches 'Origin' online store.

    EA announced a new online storefront and beta application, aimed at providing Steam-like features built specifically for EA's first-party and partner-published games.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:05 AM

      So we're launching a Steam knock off, but it won't be nearly as robust as Steam and it will only carry games we publish.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:08 AM

      they'll get it right this time.

      • reply
        June 3, 2011 10:10 AM

        How many reboots does this make now?

        • reply
          June 3, 2011 10:22 AM

          Was there something before the EA Store? I only remember their MMOs, which you still had to buy retail.

        • reply
          June 3, 2011 11:00 AM

          This is the sixth version.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:18 AM

      Hallowed are the Ori.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:21 AM

      Dear EA,

      If you want us all to check out your new service, give us something old for free. Look at how well that works for GOG.com.

      Bonus points if it's something that Origin Systems made back in the day.

      • reply
        June 3, 2011 2:38 PM

        As a guy who tracks digital distributions and freebies, I support this message.

        Remember when Games for Windows relaunched with a $0.10 Age of Empires 3? Remember how much buzz there was?

        (Yeah, I know GFW still sucks, but that's what proper promotion can make people believe.)

        • reply
          June 3, 2011 2:46 PM

          GFWL is the shitty online service

          GFW is the beautiful standard of gaming for the Windows OS.

          Sorry, just needed to chime in with the proper clarification.

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            June 3, 2011 3:25 PM

            I apologize for not making myself clear. I'm talking about the digital distribution store (http://www.gamesforwindows.com/en-US/), which used to go by "Games for Windows LIVE" and was rebranded as just "Games for Windows" last year.

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              June 3, 2011 7:09 PM

              lol never mind my ignorance then, you are correct.

      • reply
        June 3, 2011 2:42 PM

        Dear Schnapple,
        If you want to play SWTOR you'll be checking it out anyways, so we aren't going to give you shit.

        • reply
          June 3, 2011 7:36 PM

          Dear EA,

          MMORPGs are fucking bullshit and shouldn't be on Steam anyway.


    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:33 AM

      Sweet, hopefully they can "forget" that my account exists like with the switch from EA Link to EA Downloader and then I can never get the games I purchased on the previous system.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 10:57 AM

      The diffrence between them and Blizzard B.net is they have their exclusive games you can't work with elsewhere. You have to use B.net for WoW, Diablo, and Starcraft. EA's is doing STEAM with just their games. Why would I fracture my Library and contacts with STEAM? Unless they offer big discounts on their games under this service I have no reason to use it over STEAM.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 11:10 AM

      Surprised no one is pissed they're re-purposing the Origin name like this.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 11:33 AM

      Ten bucks says BF3 will use Origin for it's friends system and chat.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 11:40 AM

      SWTOR only available digital via Origin? No Steam/Impulse/D2D?

      I'll buy the game at retail just to deny them a piece of the sale price now :P

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        June 3, 2011 12:21 PM

        I wouldn't worry too much. Most likely EA will do with SWTOR what they do with most MMO's, pressure BIOware to push it out before it's done, alienate the fan base, and set the game up to fail.

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          June 3, 2011 1:06 PM

          Pretty much what has happened to BioWare since EA took over. I'd rather wait for a good polished game to come out then get a buggy game with good potential. BioWare is turning into Obsidian.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 12:48 PM

      Ok they brought the Origin name out. Can we PLEASE have a UO2 now? Just put the original game in an awesome top-down engine and rake in millions. Seriously.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 1:41 PM

      Because the EA download manager worked so good, we decided to re-skin and re-brand it as ORIGIN.

      • reply
        June 5, 2011 9:06 AM

        Don't understand why people keep supporting EA and buying their garbage. This allows them to pull shit like this.

        I think the last EA game I played was Mutant League Hockey on the Genesis.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 2:23 PM

      If I can type in my BF2:BC2 EA store key and have an "Origin" version of it with unlimited downloads, then I may consider making more purchases directly from EA.

      • reply
        June 3, 2011 2:37 PM

        If you bought it via the EA store it's already in your Origin account. Mine is anyways.

      • reply
        June 3, 2011 3:00 PM

        Also, they quietly removed any kind of download restrictions some time ago, even from existing purchases.

    • reply
      June 3, 2011 5:41 PM

      Origin: We Create Price Hikes (TM)

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        June 3, 2011 7:29 PM

        Yeah. In Australia it charges in local currency and retail prices, which means its is more expensive than Steam, which charges USD$ and prices.

    • reply
      June 5, 2011 8:07 AM

      1) Love the re-use of the long-defunct name they own. It's like taking a work of art, breaking it into a million pieces, and then using it to prop open a door. Next, we'll have Bullfrog used as the name for EA's exclusive technology powering their NBA Live/Elite/Whatever title. And Westwood will become the code name for EA's long-simmering update to the toilet, the Gaming Toilet. "Use your feces to play a game! PLOP! SPLASH! HIGH SCORE!"

      2) This is EA DM. It's nothing BUT EA DM. I'm fine with EA DM because I see it as a bonus, a way to always have downloadable versions of games I already own (for the most part since some games inexplicably do not work despite the fact they are listed as ones that should work). The application is not THAT annoying imho. The problem is... this is just EA DM. How can it be a beta if it's the same damn application as EA DM which was a final application? What's beta about it? The new name? Is the new name and icon going to cause it to go haywire because it's offended by the color choice or the tacky repurposing of a once-great developer's name? Will it gain sentience and in its artificial offense begin hacking Sony, too?

      3) If you want to be like Steam, then you have to auto-patch like Steam. You also have to give me an option to disable the damn chat window crap on the right side. It's not that hard. Some people, especially gamers that will have PC titles, are antisocial and do not want to have a chat window taking up a fourth of their screen on the right side all the time for no good reason.

      4) PIck a better color scheme. You might cause the damn program to gain sentience just to hack Sony (since that's the cool thing cool kids do) in protest. Go black, gray, and white. That always works out.

      5) Valve Steam, EA Origin, Activision/Blizzard Battle.net, Ubisoft U-Play... I don't want to run 25 programs on my computer just to house all my games with their downloadable copies. That's the point of Steam, to centralize. Sure, you toss in a couple of alternatives to give competition (D2D, Impulse) and you're done. EA DM is great as a backup for disc copies, but when you try to make it like Steam or Impulse or D2D, you're starting to lose me because we all know no other publisher is going to be joining Origin. No way in hell is Bobby Kotick going to say, "Yah, man, I used to hate EA, but this Origin platform is so awesome, I just got to be a part of it!"

    • reply
      June 5, 2011 11:25 AM

      Does this mean that EA will stop offering their games through steam?

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