Electronics Arts has released an initial alpha build of Origin for the Mac
. On Windows Origin is the publisher's digital storefront and game launcher, now effectively required to play many EA titles. The software's arrival on the Mac should, eventually, increase the number of EA games Mac users have access to, so long as studios tied to the company can devote the time and money needed to build Mac ports.
The alpha is extremely limited. Its Mac store is non-functional, and the only included game is a copy of PopCap's Bookworm. Downloads are also being restricted to "a few thousand" users in North America and the UK. Some fully-functional components are already in place however, including chat, cloud saves, and in-game overlays.
Origin for Mac requires OS X 10.6.8 or later. EA has yet to say when the final release of the software is due beyond "soon."