Back in 2011, Steam became all a bit much for publisher Electronic Arts (EA) as it opted to remove the majority of its games from the digital storefront in favor of its bespoke Origin gaming service launcher. Yet, according to a new rumor doing the rounds, EA may be toying with the idea of making a return to Valve’s platform.
Testing Origin Integration
Kindling the rumor is first the discovery of a test app update introducing Origin integration in the same vein as Ubisoft’s existing Uplay integration with Steam. EA may be gearing up to have Origin launch alongside Steam for its games.
EA Game File Updates On Steam
Alongside, the game file packages of several EA games that were either never available on Steam or removed years ago have been updated.
First up, the package for the game The Saboteur has changed, despite never launching in earnest on the platform. Additionally, SteamDB suggests a single person played The Saboteur earlier this week, presumably to test Origin integration. In tandem, EA tinkered with the database and packages for game Dragon Age 2 last week. EA removed the title from Steam way back in 2011.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst
When Steam unveiled its latest library update, keen observers noticed that a promotional image contained a somewhat odd inclusion; EA title Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, only available on Origin. Why advertise a game unavailable on the platform unless highlighting the integration of third-party launchers?
We’ll be the first to admit that the evidence isn’t exactly conclusive, but a flurry of activity recorded behind the scenes for EA titles isn’t something we’d see unless EA had the intention of returning to Steam in some capacity.
In all likelihood, we may see older titles return, while the more recent, big-budget AAA release will remain exclusively on Origin. After all, part of the reason EA migrated away from Steam was to secure a higher cut of sales, but Steam grants access to a massive player base that Electronic Arts’ Origin simply doesn’t, so opening up selected parts of its library makes sense.