In an effort to clear the air regarding the removal of Crysis 2 from Steam, EA has moved to outline a vision for Origin - their own digital distribution service - that would extend far beyond a simple EA portal, saying that they 'would absolutely welcome' content from other publishers on Origin.
Speaking to Industry Gamers, EA's senior vice president of global online, David DeMartini said that EA were unafraid of stepping into the ring with the likes of Steam and Direct2Drive, highlighting the necessity of competition in creating better products, and emphatically predicting a victory for Battlefield 3 this winter over its peers.
[T]he U.S. was built on capitalism and the ability to have choice. And if you want to win at that, it's your responsibility to create a better service. Our best games have always been developed when there have been other strong brands in the marketplace. Battlefield 3 is going to win this year in the shooter category, and largely we're being driven by other great shooters that are out there. That kind of competitive spirit and landscape is what is driving our team to make Origin better on a day to day basis. A whole bunch of people come in here everyday with passion for what they're doing, just as the people at Direct2Drive come in trying to catch Origin, and the people at Steam are continuing to try to push ahead I imagine. It's great for the industry; it just makes all of these services better. - David DeMartini
We'd rather agree with that assessment, competition is good for business. Steam's meteoric rise and high price points gave way to smaller digital distribution sites such as GreenManGaming and Eurogamer's own GetGames getting a foothold with focused sales. If digital distribution marks the way forward for our industry, then competition from publishers themselves is something we're likely to see much more of in the future. [IndustryGamers]