Rumour Suggests Microsoft Set To Announce EA Partnership Deal

Throughout the Xbox 360’s run it seemed it was always the console that would get the exclusive deals with regards to timed DLC releases – especially from the likes of Activision with Call of Duty, and Bethesda with Skyrim.

A rumour today suggests that EA might be next on the bandwagon, with some kind of deal between the publisher and Microsoft to be announced.


The deal isn’t concrete but CVG cite two independent sources. It might be timed DLC again, or it could be something more substantial. It’s unlikely to be any particular game going Xbox exclusive, but stranger things have happened.

“Both industry sources had different speculation on what the EA partnership would be,” says the site.

“One claimed it might be Battlefield 4, while the other suspected that Respawn Entertainment will make a surprise appearance,” the report continues. “Neither person works for EA or Microsoft, and so could not confirm the terms of the deal.”

EA weren’t at Sony’s showcase last week, although they did have nice things to say about the platform last night.



  1. Couldn’t care less about timed dlc. This could just be that EA will show off Battlefield 4 at the xbox press conference rather than any actual deal.

    Surely any battlefield deal would have implications for and call of duty deal on the same platform

    • Sony have had the marketing deal with EA for Battlefield 3 (& Madden/FIFA) where all advertising was done on the PS3 console and in the case of Bf3 didn’t they get some DLC 1 week early.

      Would be a shame if either platform got more than that… as CoD on 360 shows it gets quite messy when the timed exclusive period grows to 1 month.

      • yep bf3 got DLC two weeks before xbox I think?

        It seems they will do the same deal they had with Activision with COD. Shame, another let down by EA for me.

  2. I’m probably reading between lines that aren’t even there, but my first thought was wondering if EA would have been more likely to strike a deal with whichever console manufacturer most aligned with their view on “second hand games”.
    Like I say maybe it had nothing to do with that and it everything to do with MS paying more money for the privilege, but my gut says the deal is based on more than just straight-up cash value.

    • A very interesting point. It seems that Sony are trying very hard to walk the ‘We’re in it for the gamers’ line with it’s PS4 presentation and their rhetoric at the moment whereas M$ have made much more of an effort to capture the casual market and I’m afraid that they might be much more open to restricting access to second hand games than Sony seem to be.

    • Consumers will soon ditch MS if it locks out pre-owned no matter what exclusive crap they get.

      And then EA will be forced to go Playstation due to more people adopting it.

  3. Absolutely bren..smells like a plan to push the online passes to the masses..rob the rich and the poor..kind of the anti robin hood

    • I wouldn’t put anything past EA as they’re a bunch of money grabbing bastards. And their online servers are the worst I’ve ever tried to use

  4. Well it could be:

    – Revealing Bf4/Respawn game at Microsoft’s show
    – Marketing agreement like Sony have done with Bf3/Madden/FIFA/Assassin’s Creed
    – Timed exclusive DLC like CoD & GTA IV on 360
    – Exclusive DLC like Tomb Raider on 360
    – Timed exclusive whole game like Bioshock/Limbo on 360
    – Fully exclusive game like Gears Of War on 360 or Ratchet & Clank on PS3.

    Hopefully it’s nothing beyond the first two ‘options’ & that goes for either console & their respective agreements.

  5. I can’t believe that this actually has much of an impact on console sales. I’d rather get a Playstation and have access to games that push the limits of creativity and innovation with it’s first party indie titles (i’m thinking of you Journey), rather than get a xbox so I can play in a new multiplayer map a month before the other platform. Aren’t microsoft throwing their money away with these deals?

    • To be fair, M$ have a fair reputation of pushing less mainstream / indie games through Xbox Live. Titles like Shadow Complex, Trials, Dust AET, Limbo, Braid, Deadlight and ‘Splosion Man have all done really well and many were (and still are) Xbox exclusive. Whilst not produced by M$ themselves, they are well supported and marketed and I think most of them have been critical and commercial successes.

      • You seen Indie Game: The Movie? That documentary on indie games? Microsofts requirements are strict as anything, you have to push even harder as an indie dev to get your name noticed one bit on there. They are much more restrictive than Sony.

      • That might be the case, but they still exist in the Xbox ecosystem. That was all I was saying.

      • Yeah.

        PlayStation owners like to get all smug over what ithey think is a great platform for indie devs to push their ware… Whilst that may be true, outside of ThatGameCompany the Xbox 360 has had the pick of indie titles this generation imo

        Something Sony seem to be trying to put right with a new approach to PS4… and thanks to its similarity to PC we will hopefully see Steam-like levels of creativeness next-gen.

      • I agree. As a person lucky enough to own both consoles, and with no particular alligience to either, I think that M$ have done a good job of fostering a high quality, if somewhat segregated, indie roster. All of the games I mentioned are absolutely top drawer and whilst I love Journey, Flower and The Unfinished Swan as much as the next gamer, I think Xbox has much more variety in it’s indie titles. The PS4 presentation was positive though, and Sony are obviously keen to capture the spirit and vibrance of the indie scene.

  6. Smells like preferred ecosystem to me. Could also just be based on dlc stats such as (guesses) more Americans buy xbox than play station, xbox has greater sales of dlc, so push it harder on that platform.

    I’ve not bought a single piece of dlc other than what comes in various GOTY versions. I was spoilt growing up with expansion packs rather than bolt on missions and cosmetic items, generally speaking I have no interest in dlc for precisely the reason it seems to do so well… It’s bitesized.

  7. Way back when 1st lot of rumours about the Next Gen Xbox hardware started to appear, word had it that Battlefield 3 was running on it at high/max settings, all ‘behind closed doors’ etc.

    MS need a big name game to show off the new hardware for it’s annoucement and to prove they’ve not forgotten the ‘core’ gamers, so i’d expect big fuss over BF4 running on Xbox Next hardware, followed by MS annoucing either exclusive map packs on the platform or at very least timed exclusive for it.

    Given the expected cost of developing games for Next Gen, plus the fact both PS4 and Xbox Next will be using PC based hardware, i honestly cannot see E.A wanting to keep a big franchise exclusive to just PC and Xbox Next, espically IF PS4 launches before MS next platform.

    MS have lost (and not seemed that worried) the likes of Bizzare (really wish Sony had stepped in and saved the company), Bungie has gone multi-platform now, Ensemble they closed.As a platform, they now seem to focus on Xbox being about the services and content, whilst pushing Kinect, rather than delivering wide range of: ‘Only On Xbox’ titles, that marketing tag seemed to be replaced with: ‘Better With Kinect’ this generation.

  8. Maybe an epic deal like gears of war kinda deal, a game exclusive just for the nexbox

  9. MS, you really do need to stop focusing on buying timed stuff and get a lot of new IP out for the 360 as i am struggling to think of what new exclusives is due out that is not part of an existing franchise.

    Suspect it’s the usual timed exclusiveness, early beta access,exclusive marketing etc.. I can’t see EA making one of their games an exclusive as EA don’t seem like the type that would do that, regardless of how many bags of cash MS gives them.

    Personally, i’m hoping MS will cut down on their buying timed stuff as it’s a bit annoying to see DLC that looks fantastic, only to find out it’s only out on one system for a certain amount of time. Not singling out MS, just in general regarding timed stuff. And as i’ve said, they can’t rely on their current policy as DLC can’t help sell the console by itself. Exclusives does and i suspect that is why the PS3 has managed to overtake the 360 due to Sony focusing on developing their own games whilst MS buys timed DLC.

    • well said sir, being saying this for ages.

      No point spending loads and advertising early DLC. Why don’t you concentrate on getting some decent exclusives, that is what I want to see. Especially for the xbox gamers who prefer COD to Battlefield anyway.

  10. I have my serious doubs about how firm this partnership is. As a publisher you do not want to alienate to much of your customers (PS4 & PC customers). A timed exclusive, maybe, but when I read my tea leaves I think that most of the games, old and new, aren’t that easily fooled by smoke and mirrors.

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