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

#51
oxidized
rtwjunkie said:
Who cares? No matter what launcher I use, and I use them all, I play the GAME that is there. That’s why I play on any of them, for the games. I don’t play Steam or Origin or Uplay or EGS or Galaxy. I just play the game.

Anything else is just grown people throwing fits like entitled and spoiled children. It’s sad.
Being labelled as "spoiled child" by someone whose avatar is assassin's creed and who is totally clueless about the whole matter is pretty fun actually. Maybe i should just start using the block functionality as some suggested.
Posted on Reply
#52
Camm
If you believe this, I have a bridge to sell you.
Posted on Reply
#53
moproblems99
oxidized said:
Being labelled as "spoiled child" by someone whose avatar is assassin's creed and who is totally clueless about the whole matter is pretty fun actually. Maybe i should just start using the block functionality as some suggested.
People aren't clueless because they don't agree with you. And only block people if they are truly toxic. Just blocking people because you disagree just continues closing your mind off.
Posted on Reply
#54
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
oxidized said:
Being labelled as "spoiled child" by someone whose avatar is assassin's creed and who is totally clueless about the whole matter is pretty fun actually. Maybe i should just start using the block functionality as some suggested.
Do tell. Tell me how I am clueless, and what my avatar, which I change about every 6 months has anything to do with the issue at hand? So you don’t like my view and that means block me? Wow, go ahead. That’s actually going to hurt me as much as the fact that having all the game launchers hurts me...:rolleyes:

I’m well aware of the issues, and I say if that prevents you from enjoying a game today when you could be dead tomorrow, what have you accomplished except to deny yourself some fun entertainment.
Posted on Reply
#55
sergionography
Im not very familiar with the underlying situation so I don't particularly understand many of the comments, but from a high level; to me this looks perfect. Capitalism working as it should. Company A pressuring company B to lower prices. Whats wrong with that?
Posted on Reply
#56
sutyi
Funny this.

When and if ever the EGS becomes hugely popular or gets close to the same amount of users as Steam currently has and the upkeep cost goes trough the roof as they need to increase back-end and content server capacity , customer service, etc. dramatically, then I wonder how long will it take for EPYC to raise their fabled commission rates.
Posted on Reply
#57
NRANM
sergionography said:
Im not very familiar with the underlying situation so I don't particularly understand many of the comments, but from a high level; to me this looks perfect. Capitalism working as it should. Company A pressuring company B to lower prices. Whats wrong with that?
In my opinion, nothing. But the ethics and morality police is always on patrol. :)
Posted on Reply
#58
ZoneDymo
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.

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.
No... what Intel did is under the table dealing, that is illegal.
Epic (or any other company for that matter) is not hiding anythign or doing anything illegal, how do you think ANYTHING EVER gets exclusive deals? with money... thats how it works.

If you want a developer to limit its exposure only to your platform (so people go to your platform), be it a TV channel, be it a Game console, be it anything at all,
you have to pay that difference that they would have made otherwise (from all those different/other platforms), to them.
Otherwise why would any developer go for that....

Again, this anger makes no sense to me at all.
Posted on Reply
#59
Pumper
sergionography said:
Im not very familiar with the underlying situation so I don't particularly understand many of the comments, but from a high level; to me this looks perfect. Capitalism working as it should. Company A pressuring company B to lower prices. Whats wrong with that?
As a European I don't see any lower prices on Epic, I see the opposite in fact, as Epic does not allow third party game stores to sell Epic keys, in other words, Epic hates competition.

As for the 70/30 Steam cut, the argument is pure bullshit as you can clearly see when looking at the Steam reviews for games, that 30-40% of keys are purchased from other sites and then activated on Steam and Valve gets 0% cut from those. So in reality Steam is taking on average less than 20% from lifetime sales of a game (ant that is not including the new split of 80/20 for games with over 10mil in revenue).
Posted on Reply
#60
amit_talkin
Wow! so much hatred towares EPIC store. I haven't downloaded EPIC client either but I just don't understand why people defending steam here. 30% surely is big cut and We should be happy if devs getting more money out of their work. Previously people abused Metro Exodus devs for moving out of steam and now this sh*t continues. No wonder devs moving to consoles only titles. PC master race, yeah We are so fk**g toxic.
Posted on Reply
#61
Dexiefy
So now Epic tries to play the good guy here or what?
You want to make Steam go down with its 30%?
Create a platform that is actually competing with Steam so they actually have to catch up with competition.
Epic store is spyware garbage that noone wants to use, make it great, make it 12% and make developers and gamers move to that platform by choice. Using exclusives only turns people away from your sorry creation even more.

amit_talkin said:
Wow! so much hatred towares EPIC store. I haven't downloaded EPIC client either but I just don't understand why people defending steam here. 30% surely is big cut and We should be happy if devs getting more money out of their work. Previously people abused Metro Exodus devs for moving out of steam and now this sh*t continues. No wonder devs moving to consoles only titles. PC master race, yeah We are so fk**g toxic.
Because Steam is not a spyware, that would be 1 thing. People abused Metro Exodus for EXCLUSIVITY BULLSHIT. Noone really cares which platform dominates the market. People will use whatever platform is the best(Epic store, even after excluding spying, is just horrible piece of software that does not match steam in any way). What PC gamers don't want is EXCLUSIVITY. Console users accept it cause they are dumb as shit and they think that saying "lol i can play uncharted cause I have playstation, playstation the best" makes them special/superior, without realizing they simply got rammed in the ass by a corporation.
Fighting in any way possible to not have exclusivity garbage on PC platform is far from toxic.
Posted on Reply
#62
Pumper
amit_talkin said:
Wow! so much hatred towares EPIC store. I haven't downloaded EPIC client either but I just don't understand why people defending steam here. 30% surely is big cut and We should be happy if devs getting more money out of their work. Previously people abused Metro Exodus devs for moving out of steam and now this sh*t continues. No wonder devs moving to consoles only titles. PC master race, yeah We are so fk**g toxic.
Devs get jack shit from that bigger cut, it's the publishers who are pocketing the extra cash. That's why publishers are pushing for Epic exclusivity and are the ones making the deals even days before the game is supposed to be released on Steam and the devs don't even know about them doing it.
Posted on Reply
#63
rvalencia
Dimi said:

"Steam keys are meant to be a convenient tool for game developers to sell their game on other stores and at retail. Steam keys are free and can be activated by customers on Steam to grant a license to a product.

Valve provides the same free bandwidth and services to customers activating a Steam key that it provides to customers buying a license on Steam. We ask you to treat Steam customers no worse than customers buying Steam keys outside of Steam. While there is no fee to generate keys on Steam, we ask that partners use the service judiciously.

For more information on how keys work for customers, visit the customer facing support site here."

Source: https://partner.steamgames.com/doc/features/keys

They literally have 0% cut on every key sold outside of Steam.
It's fake news/bullsh*t/FUD from Tim Sweeney.

sergionography said:
Im not very familiar with the underlying situation so I don't particularly understand many of the comments, but from a high level; to me this looks perfect. Capitalism working as it should. Company A pressuring company B to lower prices. Whats wrong with that?
Tencent acquired approximately 48.4% of Epic then issued share capital, equating to 40% of total Epic.

https://www.lowyinstitute.org/the-interpreter/china-how-big-tech-learning-love-party

Wang Xiaochuan, CEO of Sogou, a Tencent-backed search engine, explained this dynamic explicitly in a quote leaked in March of this year:

We’re entering an era in which we'll be fused together. It might be that there will be a request to establish a Party committee within your company, or that you should let state investors take a stake, you know, as a form of mixed ownership


Not a normal capitalist private company.
Posted on Reply
#64
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Dexiefy said:
Epic store is spyware garbage that noone wants to use, make it great, make it 12% and make developers and gamers move to that platform by choice. Using exclusives only turns people away from your sorry creation even more.
Do some research first, instead of just following internet rumor like a lemming off a cliff. In fact it was even tested here on TPU and proven that it isn’t “spyware garbage.”

rvalencia said:
Tencent acquired approximately 48.4% of Epic then issued share capital, equating to 40% of total Epic.

https://www.lowyinstitute.org/the-interpreter/china-how-big-tech-learning-love-party

Wang Xiaochuan, CEO of Sogou, a Tencent-backed search engine, explained this dynamic explicitly in a quote leaked in March of this year:

We’re entering an era in which we'll be fused together. It might be that there will be a request to establish a Party committee within your company, or that you should let state investors take a stake, you know, as a form of mixed ownership
This was already addressed last week. Ten cent is what is known as a silent partner. They have zero operational say and only sit back and get their 40% of the profits.
Posted on Reply
#65
newtekie1
Semi-Retired Folder
ZoneDymo said:
No... what Intel did is under the table dealing, that is illegal.
Epic (or any other company for that matter) is not hiding anythign or doing anything illegal, how do you think ANYTHING EVER gets exclusive deals? with money... thats how it works.
No, what Intel did was pay companies large sums of money to not use their competitor's product. Sound familiar?

The point of this thread is the commission rate, and if the commission rate was really the only issue, Epic wouldn't need to give huge lump sums of money to devs for exclusives. Yes, money is how you get exclusives, and the lower commission rate should be enough if the devs thought the platform was worth the lower commission. But obviously that isn't enough. Alternatively, you can have a very well developed and mature platform, that appeals to people. Then you don't need to offer lower commission.
Posted on Reply
#66
Dexiefy
rtwjunkie said:
Do some research first, instead of just following internet rumor like a lemming off a cliff. In fact it was even tested here on TPU and proven that it isn’t “spyware garbage.”
I did, but if it makes you feel any better "shady as fuck shit", better now? O and you can remove "spyware" part completly if it makes you feel any better, I honestly don't care, it remains to be a piece of garbage software however (and that part can't be questioned) that poses literally no competition to steam outside its "12%". As i wrote before, if they want to compete, they have to create piece of software that is competitive. Atm they created garbage and push for exclusivity (which on its own deserves to be ridiculed) while trying to sound like they are a knight in shining armor that wants to save gaming industry from evil steam. Them trying to present all of this as such only makes them appear even more dishonest. Cause you know, they surely are not doing this for $$$ afterall and exclusivity is for our own good.

Steam offers more to the developers, offers brand recognition and offers access to biggest customer base, they definately can and should take more money for that. Epic offers less, is shady as hell, tries to intrudce console type of exclusivity (which is absolute cancer and all gamers should finally start fighting that crap until its gone). Ironically enough, they would not have to push for exclusivity at all if only their epic store was actually good and made people and developers switch to it. The fact that they have to bribe developers into taking exclusivity deals speaks miles about the quality of the epic store.
This is not the first time Epic hits the news for spying/potential spying either.There were issues with Epic Games Launcher, their BattleEye (or whatever it was called) anticheat, now their store... They were shady as fuck and they continue to be.

I am all for competition, but in order to compete, Epic needs to stop being shady company and they need to create a product that actually competes and ofc now, fix the mess they've created with "exclusivity" garbage they try to present as being for our own good.
Posted on Reply
#67
oxidized
moproblems99 said:
People aren't clueless because they don't agree with you. And only block people if they are truly toxic. Just blocking people because you disagree just continues closing your mind off.
In this thing here, yes they are, anyone saying EGS isn't a problem hasn't got even the tiniest clue about the thing, and that's just it. Or they just don't care, so they're superficial casual "gamers". Besides i have nothing to learn from people who know less than me or care less than me about the matter.

rtwjunkie said:
Do some research first, instead of just following internet rumor like a lemming off a cliff. In fact it was even tested here on TPU and proven that it isn’t “spyware garbage.”


This was already addressed last week. Ten cent is what is known as a silent partner. They have zero operational say and only sit back and get their 40% of the profits.
Tested by whom and which way, and where are these tests? It was even confirmed by epic "it was doing something it wasn't supposed to". Again, check your stuff before talking about something, playing contrarian just for the sake of it doesn't make you any more intelligent or any less ignorant than those "following internet rumors like a lemming off a cliff"

Tencent owns most of Epic, just like it owns most of Riot, and other companies, and they basically dictate how to influence the market with their methods. You're not seeing the whole picture here, in fact you're not seeing any picture at all, that's how much clueless you are.
Posted on Reply
#68
NRANM
Let's have a hypothetical.

Let's assume for a moment that Epic did not have exclusives. Furthermore, so many people cite the lack of features as a major deterrent, so let's also assume that the Epic Game Store received the exact same features as Steam.
All features and games being the same, what reason does a user have to purchase a game from the Epic Game Store if he/she already has a Steam account and is comfortable with it? None?

Now let's also assume (in addition to the above) that Epic competes with Steam with lower prices.

How much lower do the prices need to be (on average) to make it worthwhile for consumers to switch from a known client/platform, with which they are comfortable, and instead purchase a game from the Epic Game Store?
How many consumers would rather pay a higher price just so that they don't have to deal with the unknown?

I'd wager the answer would be "rather significantly" for the former question, and "quite a few" for the latter. Especially considering all the FUD that is being spread.

That is why Epic chose to be aggressive, and opted for exclusives -- to give them an extra edge. That is how business works. That's how it has always worked. I know some people have an ideal of how things should be, but reality is much different.

Again, it is still baffling to me how many people (supposedly passionate gamers) throw all these tantrums.
As a gamer and a consumer in gernal, I care about two things: that I get to play good games, and that I get to purchase things/stuff (games in this case) at the best possible price.
I don't defend Epic because I'm their fanboy, or because I hate Steam. I defend Epic because I see this as a potential vehicle to introduce positive changes to the industry that would benefit all consumers, me included. What's the worst thing that could happen? Things would return to the status quo, before the Epic Game Store was a thing?

How boring and/or care-free does one's life need to be if "having to use another game launcher" or "a game being exclusive to EGS for a year" are actual problems that ruin one's day, and cause such outrage. This is as good of an example of a "first world problem" as it can get.

EDIT/ADDED

And how about this proposition?

Plenty of games nowadays are released in less than ideal state, so they require a bit of patching and maybe even additional content to really reach their potential. Factoring that in, one could consider waiting a few or several months anyway, before purchasing the game. If that is the case, what difference does it make where it was initially released?
Posted on Reply
#69
oxidized
NRANM said:
Let's have a hypothetical.

Let's assume for a moment that Epic did not have exclusives. Furthermore, so many people cite the lack of features as a major deterrent, so let's also assume that the Epic Game Store received the exact same features as Steam.
All features and games being the same, what reason does a user have to purchase a game from the Epic Game Store if he/she already has a Steam account and is comfortable with it? None?

Now let's also assume (in addition to the above) that Epic competes with Steam with lower prices.

How much lower do the prices need to be (on average) to make it worthwhile for consumers to switch from a known client/platform, with which they are comfortable, and instead purchase a game from the Epic Game Store?
How many consumers would rather pay a higher price just so that they don't have to deal with the unknown?

I'd wager the answer would be "rather significantly" for the former question, and "quite a few" for the latter. Especially considering all the FUD that is being spread.

That is why Epic chose to be aggressive, and opted for exclusives -- to give them an extra edge. That is how business works. That's how it has always worked. I know some people have an ideal of how things should be, but reality is much different.

Again, it is still baffling to me how many people (supposedly passionate gamers) throw all these tantrums.
As a gamer and a consumer in gernal, I care about two things: that I get to play good games, and that I get to purchase things/stuff (games in this case) at the best possible price.
I don't defend Epic because I'm their fanboy, or because I hate Steam. I defend Epic because I see this as a potential vehicle to introduce positive changes to the industry that would benefit all consumers, me included. What's the worst thing that could happen? Things would return to the status quo, before the Epic Game Store was a thing?

How boring and/or care-free does one's life need to be if "having to use another game launcher" or "a game being exclusive to EGS for a year" are actual problems that ruin one's day, and cause such outrage. This is as good of an example of a "first world problem" as it can get.
And what would these "positive changes" be exactly? They just want money, that's all and they're trying their hardest to get it, screwing over as much as consumers as possible, and not only, they're also trying to picture themselves like the saviours, and to people like you, and some others here who are clueless and also not really quick understanding stuff, they might even manage that.
Posted on Reply
#70
NRANM
oxidized said:
And what would these "positive changes" be exactly?
I don't know. I'm not Nostradamus. Competition is good for the consumer, and that is what Epic is trying to do -- compete. The means, with which they compete, do not concern me, as I care about the end results.
Maybe nothing will change. If that is the case, so be it. The point is I don't see a downside, only potential/possible upsides.

oxidized said:
They just want money, that's all and they're trying their hardest to get it, screwing over as much as consumers as possible
Oh?

Can you provide specific examples of how Epic screws consumers? And I don't mean some nebulous and vague notion of morality and virtue, I mean actual and practical examples of how consumers are significantly harmed by all this.
Posted on Reply
#71
oxidized
NRANM said:
I don't know. I'm not Nostradamus. Competition is good for the consumer, and that is what Epic is trying to do -- compete. The means, with which they compete, do not concern me, as I care about the end results.
Maybe nothing will change. If that is the case, so be it. The point is I don't see a downside, only potential/possible upsides.


Oh?

Can you provide specific examples of how Epic screws consumers? And I don't mean some nebulous and vague notion of morality and virtue, I mean actual and practical examples of how consumers are significantly harmed by all this.
I want to ask you a very simple question

Where do you live, planet earth or something else? Please answer honestly, because this post i quoted here really made me doubt.


And you people wanna convince me you're not clueless? Come on...
Posted on Reply
#72
NRANM
oxidized said:
I want to ask you a very simple question

Where do you live, planet earth or something else? Please answer honestly, because this post i quoted here really made me doubt.


And you people wanna convince me you're not clueless? Come on...
Already resorting to ad hominems? :)

To answer your question, yes, I am indeed from Earth. :)

And now that I've humored you and answered your question, would you be so kind to indulge me as well, and answer my question?
Posted on Reply
#73
oxidized
NRANM said:
Already resorting to ad hominems? :)

To answer your question, yes, I am indeed from Earth. :)
Well i'm answering to you, who should i refer to?
Too bad! if you lived somewhere else it could've been used as excuse.
Posted on Reply
#74
NRANM
oxidized said:
Well i'm answering to you, who should i refer to?
I'm sorry. I didn't understand what you meant. Did you mean you had already answered my question, or are you asking for some further clarification on my part?
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