EA today announced that the Origin client for Mac is coming along, and an alpha test of the software has begun. Gamers with a Mac can download the alpha today, though it will be available to only “a few thousand users” in North American and the U.K. Though it’s kind of odd, the Origin for Mac alpha can be found for download through Origin website, and is found on the site’s demos section.
The alpha client does not yet have access to EA’s store, and the Twitch.tv live-streaming is also disabled. Instead, EA is encouraging Mac gamers to add non-Origin titles to the service and use the Origin overlay in-game.
Of course, a broken client doesn’t sound appealing, so EA is giving away copies of PopCap’s Bookworm with every alpha download. EA promises that the complete version of Origin for Mac will have all of the features of the PC client, including auto-patching, cloud saves, and a friends list.
Though criticized poor customer service and aggressive DRM, Origin has many of the same features of other PC gaming stores. The thing that sets Origin apart is that it is the only place EA games can be downloaded for the PC. Ubisoft’s new Uplay client is similar, and though the publisher does make Uplay necessary for its newer PC titles, it doesn’t restrict the sale of its PC games to its own storefront. Ubisoft titles can still be found through Steam and GOG.