EA is looking to expand its support of small studios, this time through its Origin digital distribution service, by capitalizing on the indie development wave du jour: Kickstarter. The publishing giant announced today a new initiative specifically geared toward developers working on successfully crowd-funded downloadable PC games. EA is offering to sell those games on Origin with an attractive deal: the company will waive distribution fees for the first 90 days of release.
It's a mutually beneficial arrangement. Small studios get access to the Origin audience of over 12 million registered users, and EA gets a cut of the action by selling the indie developers' crowd-funded games through their upstart platform. Plus, it's an enticing hook that will probably provide long-term revenue for EA: it's unlikely that developers would pull their games from Origin after the initial three-month period rather than start paying distribution fees.