Electronic Arts has officially launched their newest digital edition of money earning plans for their core gaming audience: EA Sports Season Ticket. For $24.99 a year, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 owners will be able to land early, discounted and premium content for five of EA’s banner sports titles.

Madden, NHL, Tiger Woods, FIFA, and NCAA Football are the five series eligible for the Season Ticket perks. The Season Ticket is available for purchase now, and the first game to make use of its features will be Madden 12. What does $25 a year get you? For starters, three days worth of early access to each of the five games. Here’s the rundown of benefits per the press release sent out earlier today…

  • Early Full-Game Digital Access: Three days before a game’s scheduled release, fans will be able to download and play the full version of all five participating titles on Xbox 360 and PS3™**. The digitally downloaded game will time out when the game is available at retail and consumers have the option to purchase the same full game on disc at retail. EA SPORTS Season Ticket subscribers can transfer all achievements earned during the three-day download period to the purchased disc, resulting in an early edge over the competition.
  • Discounted Downloadable Content: Subscribers will get a 20-percent discount on all available downloadable content for participating EA SPORTS titles. Downloadable content, which enhances and refreshes the core game experience, includes such items as Ultimate Team packs, accelerator packs and gear upgrades.
  • Free Premium Web Content: Premium web content extends the game experience beyond the console to a web browser. All participating titles will feature premium web content that will be free to EA SPORTS Season Ticket members beginning with the premium Creation Center packs for FIFA Soccer 12. These packs provide a deeper set of customization tools and abilities within Creation Center to build your own teams and tournaments, and will be available to the consumer until the membership to the program has expired.
  • Membership Recognition: Subscribers are easily identifiable with an exclusive membership recognition badge displayed both in-game and on their EASPORTS.com profile.

With the press release came a bit of PR speak and explanation from EA Sports boss Peter Moore. Moore actually nails the target demographic for this addition in this quote, so listen up…

“EA SPORTS Season Ticket is an exciting program for our core fans — it lets our biggest fans play earlier, play more and play better than anyone else…EA SPORTS Season Ticket is an important step in our vision for transforming how deeply fans connect with the sports games they love through digital products and services. We’re excited to continue evolving EA SPORTS Season Ticket as we listen to what consumers want most in their gaming experiences.”

While you may be grumbling something about EA’s move to squeeze more money out of gamers, recognize that Moore pretty much highlights exactly who this offer is meant for. EA Sports Season Tickets should be bought exclusively by diehard sports game fans. You know the type; they pretty much live their gaming lives with the latest edition of FIFA or Madden constantly sitting in their console trays. This isn’t for gamers patient enough to wait for launch day.

The only awkward bit of this news is the early game access portion. Yes, with the Season Ticket you’ll be able to download each game three days early. But that digital version expires (self-destructs?) once the retail version is available in stores. In order to keep playing, you’ll need to go out and buy a copy of the game. Your trophies and achievements transfer.

What do you think of this new offer?