Origin seems to recognise that I purchased NFS: Hot Pursuit on Steam, and is now giving me the option to download it. Is there a way, or is it possible, to install games in Origin that have been backed-up/downloaded via Steam?

  • I'm a bit confused here. If Origin is giving you the option to download it, won't you be able to install it once it's downloaded? Feb 16, 2012 at 18:38
  • @MatthewRead, I imagine the problem is that redownloading would be prohibitively expensive or take a very long time.
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 18:42
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    Just because I am curious, is there a reason you would rather play this on Origin rather than Steam?
    – kazzamalla
    Feb 16, 2012 at 19:57
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    hmm... when I typed in my steam keys on origin, it was able to find the game from the steam folder, I didn't have to redownload any of them. Granted NFS is not one of the titles I have, but I did not have to redownload Dragon Age Origins.
    – l I
    Feb 16, 2012 at 21:40
  • You're also working from the assumption that EA has any interest in making Origin something useful as opposed to a way to lock their customers into their own distribution platform. Becoming decently interoperable with Steam would not advance the latter. Aug 16, 2013 at 12:42

3 Answers 3


I haven't installed Origin yet, but I would say it isn't even technically possible, short of reversing the game, Steamworks and the Origin interface.

Steam and Origin are different DRM systems with easily different interfaces between the game and the distribution system (i.e. ways for the program to ask "what's the user's avatar?", "does the user own this game?", "does the user have this DLC?", "please unlock this achievement", "please begin the purchase of this hat", etc.)

olololol software engineering is simple

You can't just swap steamapp.dll for origindrm.dll (or whatever the relevant libraries are) and expect the program to work still.

The games could even be available in different versions between the two different platforms, so even just copy pasting the bulk of the game (levels, music, etc.) might be in vain.

In short, no, it's not possible.

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    That's a very bold claim.
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 19:39
  • @kotekzot A claim I hope I've sufficiently backed up with facts.
    – badp
    Feb 16, 2012 at 19:42
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    This is not a simple as it seems, whether or not you can do this may be game specific from what I've experienced linking stuff from steam to origin.
    – l I
    Feb 16, 2012 at 21:41
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    @kotekzot You assume every single copy of the game from a distribution venue is identical, which they aren't due to DRM: any application of a general-purpose diff would produce unusable collection of garbage data. You could get a usable delta patch for personal use if you purchased a copy from each distribution venue and created a diff from those, but that would defeat the point of this whole exercise.
    – user3389
    Feb 16, 2012 at 22:12
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    No, @MarkTrapp, I do not assume they are identical, I assume the bulk of the data is identical or slightly different, which the case for most games. The overwhelming majority of games are released unencrypted, and only a few relatively small files are different by vendor, depending on DRM. Your claim that a delta would be unusable is entirely unfounded, I suggest you do some research on delta patches. As you may have noticed, Origin is giving copies of the game to the people who have it on Steam, so no additional purchase is necessary. Any interested person could make the patch, if they wanted
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 22:19

The Origin Code Redemption FAQ lists a number of titles that can be re-redeemed through Origin. Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit is one of them, you'll be unsurprised to know. There's no information on what happens to the Steam version of the game, though. I actually asked that question here but strangely enough it was closed as a duplicate of this question :/

  • Nothing changes, you can use both installations in parallel as well, just make sure to use the same EA/Origin account on both.
    – Mario
    Aug 16, 2013 at 9:10
  • @Mario good to know, thanks. Where were you when my question was closed? :P
    – Alex
    Aug 16, 2013 at 10:22

It is technically possible, but a solution does not appear to have been developed, and it is unlikely that it ever will.

There exist a multitude of ways in which conversion may be achieved, reverse-engineering the protection of Origin and Steam being one of the most complex. A delta patch would made by somebody in posession of both copies would do the trick and be fairly small, but the chances of somebody taking interest are slim.

It is highly probable, however, that the bulk of the files for both version will be the same, and there may be a way to make Origin recognize them and redownload the files that do not much, but as somebody how neither uses Origin nor has the game in question, I am unable to test this.

  • I'd really like to know what sort of source one is expected to provide for a negative. Unless, of course, the source request is regarding the "technically possible" bit, in which case I'd like to note that it is technically possible to find 10 numbers which, when multiplied and written down as binary, will produce an archive containing the correct Origin backup files.
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 18:44
  • The notice is regarding the "technical possible" part.
    – juan
    Feb 16, 2012 at 19:19
  • @JuanManuel well, it is technically possible. One could devise a process by which Steam backup files were turned into Origin backup files, simply because both are data. It is possible to arrive at any arbitrary data from an arbitrary seed with a clever-enough algorithm. Russell's teapot is also technically possible, and one would have to be a fool or a god to assert that the teapot has no possibility of existence.
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 19:33
  • I think the objection is that your answer implies that such a solution is likely to be developed at some time. Even if that wasn't your intent, I think that is why people consider it misleading. It would be better to state that not only does it not exist now, but it would require knowledge of both proprietary systems, and neither vendor would benefit from creating it, making it extremely unlikely to ever exist.
    – bwarner
    Feb 16, 2012 at 20:30
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    @bwarner, you may be right, I will revise the answer, thanks. Although I must point out that it would be trivial for somebody in posession of both versions of the game to make a delta patch that would successfully make one out of the other, and it would likely be under 50MB.
    – kotekzot
    Feb 16, 2012 at 20:34

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