Head of EA Origin Rages Against Steam Sales Model

Paul Lilly

Electronic Arts' contentious fued with Steam isn't exactly on the same level as the Hatfields and McCoys was long before the digital age, but it's clear there exists plenty of bad blood between these two sides. The latest indication of this comes from an interview Senior VP of Global E-Commerce for EA, David DeMartini, gave to GamesIndustry . DeMartini, who obviously has a vested interest in Origin, had some choice words for Steam.

In particular, DeMartini takes issue with Steam's frequent software sales, in which even A-list titles can be bought for deep discounts. It's something gamers love, and DeMartini loathes.

"I just think it cheapens your intellectual property," DeMartini told GamesIndustry .

DeMartini said he understands why Steam does it -- "to sell a whole bunch of units" -- but he wants no part of that business model. He compared Steam to retail giant Target and said Origin is aiming to be more like Nordstrom. He was quick to clarify that items will go on sale "occasionally" at Origin, but don't expect deep discounts for 75 percent off.

Expanding on why he feels the way he does, DeMartini said that Steam's business model teaches gamers not to purchase titles in the first month, and instead wait four or five months for a big sale everyone knows is on the horizon.

Do you agree with DeMartini, or do you think Steam's deep discounts are the way to go?

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