They sure can sue you if you violate their copyrighted material. To think otherwise wouldn't be a wise choice.
It all depends. Usually they don't look kindly on people who break copyrighted material even if they aren't making a profit from it. They might not profit by shutting it down but they usually have to show that they are willing and are able to enforce their copyrighted material. Remember copyrighted material means nothing if you don't or aren't willing to defend it.
Another scenario might be you make a good game and it starts to gain a good fan base. You decide you want to capitalize on it even though it started out as a free game. So lets say you add some form of profit making into the game (Whether it be ads, paid expansion, in game store, paid sequel, whatever) and make a few hundred thousand or so.
Well EA could then come after that money and you just lost out on all that time you spent on the game, the money you made, your hard earned fan base, and more.
Either way it is not about "What would they profit" it is more about "What could you lose".
|Besides, this isn't to sell|
You might be fine then. But I would still be careful. Even if you aren't making money from it they can still shut it down and you just lost all that time on the project.
|Who would buy when there is a free game out there already?|
There is always a free game out there that is like a paid game but people still buy the paid games.
|And, EA has like what, 0 control over fans?|
Not sure what that has to do with using copyrighted material which is what I thought this conversation was about.
It doesn't matter if it is Freeware or not. That has nothing to do with copyrighted material. This website is free and the tutorial here is free but that doesn't mean you can just copy it and show it off as your own.