Xbox today announced the process by which Xbox Game Pass users will be able to access EA Play titles as part of their subscription. With the console version of the hook-up having gone through some months ago, we’ve been interested to see how it would work on PC.
The bottom line is that it’s a bit more complex than the console implementation, though that was always likely. While EA games simply appear with Game Pass on the Xbox (where else would they appear after all) on PC the Xbox Game Pass and new EA Desktop app work hand-in-hand to provide the additional EA content.
Xbox Game Pass subscribers have to download the EA app, sign up for an EA account to gain access, and then link the two accounts. Once done EA games can be installed directly from Xbox Game Pass, but as a result EA is gaining installs of its app, new sign ups to EA accounts, and player data as well – something that it’s arm’s length from via Xbox consoles.
Xbox has created a video to show the one-time setup procedure, but they’re is still seven steps to the (relatively simple) process. And it’s another app on consumer’s PC that will need to update, and will undoubtedly send notifications by default.
The PC version will support ten hour trials of the most recent EA titles, as seen on Xbox as well. Which will likely be a key way of driving revenue to the EA Desktop app.
As we reported back in September the Xbox-EA deal was a huge turning point for the future of the industry, showing that platforms and publishers were capable of making massive deals to bring huge amounts of content to subscribers via a partnership of a type we’ve never seen before.
“It redefines the gaming space, it reminds us of the kind of deals that are possible, it makes us wonder, if this, then what next?” We said at the time. And the ‘what next’ proved to be the Microsoft-Bethesda deal.