EA Announces Subscription Service

EA Sports officially confirmed a new program called Season Ticket. The service allows access to their biggest sports titles before they come out, discounts, downloadable content and more. The company will be charging $25 (2000 Microsoft Points) for the subscription-based program, it’ll be available for both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and it’ll include titles in the Madden, NCAA Football, NHL, FIFA and Tiger Woods PGA Tour franchises.

Probably, the service’s most important feature is the possibility of downloading early versions of games, as it allows players to play their favorite iterations before they actually hit stores. According to EA, users will be able to download games three days before their official release, but their copies will be useless after the game’s official launch. Basically, this is how EA will indirectly force players to still buy a retail version of the title. In any way, it’s really nice to know that users can still pick up right where they left off as saved files are compatible across versions (both digital and retail.)

Additionally, Season Ticket subscribers will get a 20% discount on all downloadable versions of the aforementioned games and add-on packs. Also, games like FIFA 12 will use the recently announced web-tools, allowing players to create custom teams, tournaments and so on.

Furthermore, GameStop has been referenced as the “official marketing partner,” (nobody really knows what that means…) The Season Ticket has been confirmed in North America for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, but for some reason other territories like Europe, Australia and New Zealand will only be able to get the Xbox 360 version of the service.