EA Sports has launched an annual subscription service, Season Ticket, for its core franchises.
The annual fee is set as 2000 Microsoft Points (roughly $25.00 / £17.00) – at the time of writing an official cash figure wasn't available – and will give subscribers access to four exclusive benefits across all the four franchises.
"We've been talking to consumers in the U.S. and over there in Europe about the type of thing they would like to see that they aren't currently getting from their EA Sports experiences," EA Sports' president Peter Moore told GamesIndustry.biz.
"It's very important to communicate that this doesn't change anything about EA Sports other than to add a layer on for people who are interested in those areas. It doesn't subtract or detract in any way from the core experience."
Season ticket holders will be able to download and play the full version of the latest version of each game three days before it is released. The download will expire on launch day, when the user will be able to purchase the game through conventional channels, taking any experience or achievements earned with them.
The other benefits are a 20 percent discount on all EA Sports DLC, including Ultimate Team packs, accelerator packs and gear upgrades; free premium web content; and a membership recognition badge displayed in-game and on the user's EA Sports profile.
Moore highlighted the early access and discounted DLC benefits as the "brain behind the programme," and claimed that the initiative is, "not about making a profit in the early going."
"It's about figuring out...a price that isn't going to eliminate a huge amount of people for the value that's delivered. We took it to the consumers and asked what they thought. The price we landed on is around 2000 points, and we think it's a great price."
Season Ticket is further evidence of EA's commitment to growing its digital business, with EA Sports vice president Andrew Wilson recently speaking at both Develop and directly to GamesIndustry.biz on the subject.
The service covers the EA Sports FIFA, Madden NFL, NHL Hockey and Tiger Woods' PGA Tour franchises. It will be available in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand for Xbox 360, and North America for PlayStation 3.
For the rest of the interview with Peter Moore, head over to the features section.