EA Sports has quietly rolled out a new Support A Creator program. Some Madden NFL 21 content creators began tweeting about the program at around 3 PM EST. Esports Marketing Manager GoodGameBro and creator Popular Stranger were among the first to tweet about the program. An FAQ appeared on EA’s website at around the same time.
— Popular Stranger (@iiiiMike) September 25, 2020
EA’s Support a Creator Program
As part of the Madden 21 Support a Creator program, EA gives eligible creators their own unique promo code. When buying Madden points, players have the option to input a creator’s code. When you use that creator’s code, two things happen. First, you save 5% on your purchase. Second, the creator receives 5% of the total purchase, which amounts to $5 for every $100 spent on Madden points. The program is currently in beta, which means access to the program is invite-only.
Affiliate programs like this aren’t new to the creator space. Twitch streamers can earn extra revenue through the Amazon Associates program. When viewers follow an Amazon Associates’ link, the streamer gains commission on whatever ends up in the cart. Activision launched a similar Support a Creator program for Call of Duty in August. Players can support Call of Duty creators anytime they spend Call of Duty points, rather than when they buy them, which is a significant difference in design.
People have raised worries about the new system. After all, one of the two things Madden points are used for are MUT packs. Influencers encouraging the community to take part in forms of gambling could lead down a dangerous road, one that EA has been down many times before. While some creators compare this system to other affiliate programs, other creators insisted they would not participate in the program even if offered.
The fact that Madden 21’s Support a Creator program centers around the purchase of Madden points has also drawn a lot of comparisons to another kind of transaction that is frowned on in the Madden community…
Madden’s Support a Creator vs MUT Coin Sellers
You can only buy Call of Duty points through the in-game store, or through the platform store of your choice. Once you have Call of Duty points, you can only spend them on bundles or cosmetics in-game. Call of Duty points cannot be transferred to other accounts. Madden points are the same way. Madden points can become MUT coins, however, and MUT coins can be bought and sold.
I’m not gonna explain the process through which MUT coins are transferred. A quick google search will explain better than I can. The MUT coin market is relevant to the conversation because EA has banned people for participating in this grey market. In 2018, Youtuber YaBoySavage was disqualified from a Madden Club Series event because he promoted MUT coin sales sites in his content. To his credit… he still does.
EA tends to crack down harshly on MUT coin sales. This includes any in-game purchase of an item that even resembles a MUT coin transaction. Between Reddit and the forums, the internet is littered with stories of players who claim they were banned just for buying expensive bronze or silver items. EA’s stance on this practice is pretty clear.
So then, why a Support a Creator program that seems so similar?
The most innocent, straight-forward reading is that this program does want to help benefit both players and creators. Madden Ultimate Team certainly makes enough that EA could easily give back. This could be an attempt to strike out against the popularity of MUT coin sellers. By giving creators promotional codes from EA directly to Madden 21, creators may be less inclined to accept MUT coin seller sponsorships. Maybe EA just wants to sell more Madden points. The Support a Creator program will be interesting to follow, no matter the outcome.