Friday, April 26th 2019

Epic's Tim Sweeney Says They'd Stop Hunting for Exclusives if Steam Matched Epic Games Store in Comission Rates

Epic CEO Tim Sweeney has come out with an interesting commitment: that EPIC would stop hunting for exclusives in the PC platform is Steam were to match them in their 88% return to developers for each game sold. Being a developer themselves, Epic games have certainly looked into creating their own storefront as a way to escape the clutches of Steam's cut in the digital, PC distribution market (a move that had already been done by the likes of EA and Ubisoft, if you'll remember). A commitment to stop hunting for exclusives (and thus segregating the PC games offering across different platforms) is a clear indicator of Epic's mission with the Epic Games Store: to bring back power and returns to developers such as them (while taking a cut from the profits for themselves, obviously).

Check out after the break for the full content of Sweeney's remarks regarding their Games Store and the problem with Steam. I, for one, don't see much of a problem with virtual segregation of games across multiple PC-bound platforms - one of the strengths of PC gaming is actually the ability to install multiple applications that increase functionality, after all. But if the end game of all of this is simply to give more back to developers and Epic's move facilitates that by forcing Valve's hand in matching them for fear of drying profits - then so be it.
If Steam committed to a permanent 88% revenue share for all developers and publishers without major strings attached, Epic would hastily organize a retreat from exclusives (while honoring our partner commitments) and consider putting our own games on Steam.30% store dominance is the #1 problem for PC developers, publishers, and everyone who relies on those businesses for their livelihood. We're determined to fix it and this is the one approach that will effect major change.

Such a move would be a glorious moment in the history of PC gaming, and would have a sweeping impact on other platforms for generations to come.
Then stores could go back to just being nice places to buy stuff, rather than the Game Developer IRS.

The key "no major strings attached" points are: games can use any online systems like friends and accounts they choose, games are free to interoperate across platforms and stores, the store doesn't tax revenue on other stores or platforms (e.g. if you play Fortnite on iOS+PC)…

More "no major strings attached": if you play the game on multiple platforms, stuff you've bought can be available everywhere; no onerous certification requirements. Essentially, the spirit of an open platform where the store is just a place to find games and pay for stuff.

Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) April 25, 2019
Source: DSO Gaming
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224 Comments on Epic's Tim Sweeney Says They'd Stop Hunting for Exclusives if Steam Matched Epic Games Store in Comission Rates

#1
oxidized
Just ridiculous. Fortnite money to bribe people will end at some point, and if they keep going like this it might be over soon, that day i'll be the first in line watching you sink with your trash game and filthy practices, hopefully you'll end up like fkn Bleszinski
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#2
Dimi
So what about the Steam keys that Valve provides for free to devs/pubs to sell on other stores like GMG, Humble Bundle, Amazon... Keys they have 0% cut on. They practically lose money on those keys.
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#3
NdMk2o1o
Yup no one would use epic and not many would be aware of them if it wasn't for fortnite and fortnite alone and when that bubble bursts, which it will, they will go back to obscurity
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#4
KllR007
lol. He don't have problem that Sony and MS taking 30% ? It is standard for long. He think his 12% is deal-breaker ? Cmon, if he would believe it they wouldn't buy exclusivities because every developer would be gladly with them.. Instead they need to buy off games days before release and making their monopoly on PC gaming.
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#5
64K
Sweeney has said before that Epic can't continue the limited exclusives forever. Maybe they are already reaching a tipping point and he's looking for a way out of this squabble with Steam in a face-saving manner. The bottom line is that what he wanted was to build up the base of EGS and he's probably achieved that or gotten close to it. Next, continue making improvements to EGS.
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#7
Imsochobo
64K said:
Sweeney has said before that Epic can't continue the limited exclusives forever. Maybe they are already reaching a tipping point and he's looking for a way out of this squabble with Steam in a face-saving manner. The bottom line is that what he wanted was to build up the base of EGS and he's probably achieved that or gotten close to it. Next, continue making improvements to EGS.
In my opinion is that Valve does so much more than just sell your game, they give you data, they fix drivers, compatibility with controllers, they give you frameworks to work with etc.

it's not just a store which is why they charge a little more, maybe they've charged too much, maybe not and I won't be the judge of That.
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#8
Crackong
They have no other way to justify their poor bribing move.
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#9
kastriot
I think Epic was doomed from begining but at least they tried.
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#10
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
So he doesn't believe that a significantly better platform should be charging more for it....
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#11
64K
newtekie1 said:
So he doesn't believe that a significantly better platform should be charging more for it....
Basically, and that's an asinine stance to take. It would be one thing if EGS were anywhere close to on par with Steam but as it is right now they aren't close.

Sweeney doesn't seem to be aware that the features that makes Steam stand out didn't just happen by accident. Valve has put a lot of effort and money into Steam to get it where it is.
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#12
ZoneDymo
Dont really understand all this seemingly blind hatred.... its like the people being against Tesla...

You have to spend money to make money, maybe with some exclusive content it gets people interested, this is just how you do things, this is super standard yet now you are all upset?

And the suggestion that Steam asks less money of the developers also upsets you? do you guys have a personal stake in the financial prosperity of Steam/Valve or something?

Lets not forget that because of the success of Fortnite, Epic decided to lower the cost of the Unreal engine and retro actively also paid companies who already used and paid for the engine the difference back.

I would think you guys (gamers) would be rooting for a move/a company like this, competition is always good for the consumer and more money for the devs could also mean better games or lower prices, yet you are all upset....
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#13
Shihabyooo
As much as I like Sweeny and Epic, this over-the-top idealism is provoking my cynisim. Still, if the major stakeholders in this fiasco, the developers, seem to be on Epic's side, even with all the features that make Steam a "significantly better platform" (c'mon now, do achievments and other minor features really out-weigh a better game with more funds invested in making the game itself?).
The ball is really on Valve's court here. Sweeny isn't being quite deplomatic with it, but still.

NdMk2o1o said:
Yup no one would use epic and not many would be aware of them if it wasn't for fortnite and fortnite alone and when that bubble bursts, which it will, they will go back to obscurity
Pretty sure many gamers would easily recognize the brand that pops up everytime they boot up any of the endless onslaught of UE3/4-based titles. Without going into the fact that Epic is the house behind Gears of War and Unreal Tournament, two well known game series with a considerably large fanbase.

KllR007 said:
lol. He don't have problem that Sony and MS taking 30% ? It is standard for long. He think his 12% is deal-breaker ? Cmon, if he would believe it they wouldn't buy exclusivities because every developer would be gladly with them.. Instead they need to buy off games days before release and making their monopoly on PC gaming.
The comparison is highly moot (and honestly is pure whataboutry). Steam and Epic both maintain an entirely cloud/software-based platform, Sony and Microsoft have a hardware side to maintain as well.
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#14
Slizzo
NdMk2o1o said:
Yup no one would use epic and not many would be aware of them if it wasn't for fortnite and fortnite alone and when that bubble bursts, which it will, they will go back to obscurity
Unreal and Unreal Tournament would like a word. Also Jazz Jackrabbit.
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#15
oxidized
Shihabyooo said:
As much as I like Sweeny and Epic, this over-the-top idealism is provoking my cynisim. Still, if the major stakeholders in this fiasco, the developers, seem to be on Epic's side, even with all the features that make Steam a "significantly better platform" (c'mon now, do achievments and other minor features really out-weigh a better game with more funds invested in making the game itself?).
The ball is really on Valve's court here. Sweeny isn't being quite deplomatic with it, but still.


Pretty sure many gamers would easily recognize the brand that pops up everytime they boot up any of the endless onslaught of UE3/4-based titles. Without going into the fact that Epic is the house behind Gears of War and Unreal Tournament, two well known game series with a considerably large fanbase.


The comparison is highly moot (and honestly is pure whataboutry). Steam and Epic both maintain an entirely cloud/software-based platform, Sony and Microsoft have a hardware side to maintain as well.
You have no idea what you're talking about, like someone else roaming this forum

"(c'mon now, do achievments and other minor features really out-weigh a better game with more funds invested in making the game itself?)"

rofl
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#16
yakk
EGS can just join the other bunch of discount stores. Those stores never bothered Valve before, why should EGS?

EGS would need to constantly bankroll exclusive titles for Valve to pay them any attention IMO. If EGS isn't prepared to do this, or if game publishers are not getting the sales volume they expected, even with being paid upfront then it's probably pointless.
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#17
Metroid
Epic's Tim Sweeney = aka trump of the gaming industry hehe

"Let's undo everything and get a better deal.", This is what trump is doing ehhe
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#18
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
ZoneDymo said:
Dont really understand all this seemingly blind hatred.... its like the people being against Tesla...

You have to spend money to make money, maybe with some exclusive content it gets people interested, this is just how you do things, this is super standard yet now you are all upset?

And the suggestion that Steam asks less money of the developers also upsets you? do you guys have a personal stake in the financial prosperity of Steam/Valve or something?

Lets not forget that because of the success of Fortnite, Epic decided to lower the cost of the Unreal engine and retro actively also paid companies who already used and paid for the engine the difference back.

I would think you guys (gamers) would be rooting for a move/a company like this, competition is always good for the consumer and more money for the devs could also mean better games or lower prices, yet you are all upset....
It isn't just blind hatred, there is reason to dislike the way that Epic is doing things. Think of it like this, if Intel was paying companies(like Dell and HP) large sums of money to only use Intel processors, would you be OK with it? No. In fact, they tried it, people freaked out about, and Intel even went to court because of it, several times.

If the platform itself, and the costs savings that come with it, was the only thing Epic was using to get these exclusives, I'd be fine with it. But that isn't the case, they are paying huge lump sums of money to get exclusives. Which very clearly shows that devs, and Epic themselves, know the platform alone isn't worth the what they save on commision.
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#20
FYFI13
They just keep shooting into own feet. Well done.
Posted on Reply
#21
NRANM
newtekie1 said:
It isn't just blind hatred, there is reason to dislike the way that Epic is doing things. Think of it like this, if Intel was paying companies(like Dell and HP) large sums of money to only use Intel processors, would you be OK with it? No. In fact, they tried it, people freaked out about, and Intel even went to court because of it, several times.
Except in Epic's case it is timed exclusivity, which makes your comparison inaccurate at the very least.

newtekie1 said:
If the platform itself, and the costs savings that come with it, was the only thing Epic was using to get these exclusives, I'd be fine with it. But that isn't the case, they are paying huge lump sums of money to get exclusives. Which very clearly shows that devs, and Epic themselves, know the platform alone isn't worth the what they save on commision.
If the platform itself and the cost savings was all Epic had to offer, few people would switch. Why would they? Users tend to not like change. Why would a user switch to a different platform if the platform he is currently using offers him everything he needs? Even if Epic offers(ed) slightly lower prices, users would still most likely stick with Steam, i.e. the price cut would not be an incentive enough for users to switch, instead they would be willing to pay a higher price just to keep using what they are used to.
Epic needs a large incentive to entice users to come to them. Exclusives are such an incentive.

Incidentally, I'm also in the minority who are baffled that so many "gamers" tend to follow stores and companies, and not the games themselves.
Posted on Reply
#22
NdMk2o1o
Shihabyooo said:
As much as I like Sweeny and Epic, this over-the-top idealism is provoking my cynisim. Still, if the major stakeholders in this fiasco, the developers, seem to be on Epic's side, even with all the features that make Steam a "significantly better platform" (c'mon now, do achievments and other minor features really out-weigh a better game with more funds invested in making the game itself?).
The ball is really on Valve's court here. Sweeny isn't being quite deplomatic with it, but still.


Pretty sure many gamers would easily recognize the brand that pops up everytime they boot up any of the endless onslaught of UE3/4-based titles. Without going into the fact that Epic is the house behind Gears of War and Unreal Tournament, two well known game series with a considerably large fanbase.


The comparison is highly moot (and honestly is pure whataboutry). Steam and Epic both maintain an entirely cloud/software-based platform, Sony and Microsoft have a hardware side to maintain as well.
This is true though all of those games you never needed the epic game store for afaik
Posted on Reply
#23
GinoLatino
Dimi said:
So what about the Steam keys that Valve provides for free to devs/pubs to sell on other stores like GMG, Humble Bundle, Amazon... Keys they have 0% cut on. They practically lose money on those keys.
"Steam keys that Valve provides"? I believe you got it all backwards...
Posted on Reply
#24
Patriot
NRANM said:
Except in Epic's case it is timed exclusivity, which makes your comparison inaccurate at the very least.
That is actually also fairly accurate... Can't use AMD cpu's till they are 1yr old.
Posted on Reply
#25
R-T-B
Dimi said:
So what about the Steam keys that Valve provides for free to devs/pubs to sell on other stores like GMG, Humble Bundle, Amazon... Keys they have 0% cut on. They practically lose money on those keys.
How on earth did you conclude they hand those out for free? I certainly would not assume such, but I've never published on steam so could be wrong. Citation please as it seems outlandish.

GinoLatino said:
"Steam keys that Valve provides"? I believe you got it all backwards...
Of course valve provides them... who else would? They MAKE steam. The stores he listed aren't key resellers. They sell new unused keys.
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