Another Bad PR Sign: Indie Developer Shuns Epic Store, Saying 'My Word Means Something'

from the oof dept

We were just discussing how there are some cracks starting to show in the PR war that Epic decided to kick off when it initiated the PC gaming platform war against Steam. Part of the problem Epic has is that, despite its attempt to frame its exclusivity deals as some attempt to heal a broken PC gaming industry, the public very clearly isn't buying it. It's gotten bad enough that publishers that buy into Epic's exclusive deals are proactively messaging publicly to the gaming masses that they would prefer not to be the target of widespread harassment.

That, honestly, is bad enough to warrant concern by the industry as a whole. But when indie developers begin coming out publicly to refuse an Epic Store agreement, and frame that decision as a moral choice, the problem has only deepened. Wlad Marhulets is the solo developer behind Darq, a horror game released recently. He got an email from Epic seeking to sell the game on the Epic Store. Marhulets read the email and its request for an exclusivity deal, then he took a look at all the backlash other publishers have faced for entering into that agreement, and decided that he would be breaking his word to the public by entering into such a deal.

After asking whether Epic Games’ offer necessitated exclusivity, and hearing that it did, Marhulets turned down the deal before even discussing money. Darq had been on Steam since November, 2018, and is also for sale on GOG. The horror adventure game was within the top 50 most wishlisted games on the platform before launch. “I felt going for an exclusivity deal would show that my word means nothing (as I just had promised the game would launch on Steam),” wrote Marhulets on Reddit. The positive response from fans was huge.

To be clear, you can think that what Epic is doing is truly good for the industry while also acknowledging that stories like this show pretty clearly that Epic appears to be losing the PR war it decided to wage. Again, the public is not on the side of exclusivity in exchange for higher splits for publishers. It would honestly likely be much different if Epic offered its splits without the exclusivity. In that case, the messaging would be: "You can buy it on Steam and screw the gamemaker, or buy it on our platform and benefit them. Your choice." In that case, the moral case is much more clear than when Epic attempts to limit consumer choice the way they have.

This is shown to be all the more the case when looking at how fans have reacted to Marhulets' messaging.

Darq’s Steam comments are dominated by grateful messages from fans and some derision for Epic. “I purchased a copy of DARQ to support this fine developer’s ethical business practices. Thank you for keeping your promises and taking a stand against store exclusivity. The world needs more folks like yourselves,” wrote one. “Support devs who keep their promises and stand up against evil. It also happens to be a great game so.. what are you waiting for?” said another.

If Epic wants to be as idealistic as it claims, it can have its profit splits and cool it with the exclusivity. The way this is going, it is starting to feel clear that this isn't a war Epic is going to win long term anyway.

Filed Under: app stores, darq, epic store, exclusives, video games, wlad marhulets
Companies: epic


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 Aug 2019 @ 8:32pm

    You're missing part of it. Epic won't host non-exclusive indy ga

    The epic store isn't about helping devs out, it's about growing epic market share via exclusives. The bs about helping devs is just a cover for their anti competitive actions.

    Fact, if don't sign the exclusive then you can't be on the epic store. Several devs have been blocked from the epic store for not agreeing to exclusives.

    The Darq developer understands that building trust, and goodwill will keep people coming back. The number of people black listing devs for exclusivity is only driving people to piracy.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Agammamon, 26 Aug 2019 @ 9:57pm

      Re: You're missing part of it. Epic won't host non-exclusive ind

      This is made completely clear in Darq's case - where the developer asked if he could sell on Epic non-exclusively. Despite Epic being able to do this - there's no possible technical reason why it would be impossible and they're letting Cyberpunk do it - Epic says 'no'.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 26 Aug 2019 @ 10:09pm

      'We care about indie devs... so long as we control them.' -Epic

      Fact, if don't sign the exclusive then you can't be on the epic store. Several devs have been blocked from the epic store for not agreeing to exclusives.

      It's actually worse than that as that rule only applies to indie devs, with AAA games able to sell on Epic even if they don't go exclusive.

      For all the claims about how they just want a multi-store market in order to benefit the developers and customers devs Epic is mighty quick to slam the door on the very devs who could most benefit from being able to sell on a wider range, a door they are happy to hold wide open for larger companies that were already guaranteed success, showing their true colors quite nicely.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        wereisjessicahyde (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 12:22pm

        Re: 'We care about indie devs... so long as we control them.' -E

        "Fact, if don't sign the exclusive then you can't be on the epic store."

        Completely untrue. That would mean every single game on the Epic store would be an exclusive, and that simply isn't the case. Ergo you can be one the Epic store without signing an exclusivity deal. Do you think all the Ubisoft games on there are exclusives?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          bhull242 (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 12:31pm

          Re: Re: 'We care about indie devs... so long as we control them.

          FTR, he only said that indie games must be exclusive to Epic. As such, AAA games don’t have to be Epic-exclusive to get on Epic, nor would games that are neither AAA nor indie. I’d also assume that this doesn’t count indie games that were released on Steam before Epic launched its own store, but I don’t know.

          Regardless, no one is saying that every game on EGS is Epic-exclusive. At most, they are only saying that all the indie games are.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Toom1275 (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:07pm

          Re: Re: 'We care about indie devs... so long as we control them.

          If you had any goals with that comment other than broadcasing your ignorance on the subject, then you failed miserably at achieving them.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            wereisjessicahyde (profile), 28 Aug 2019 @ 11:28am

            Re: Re: Re: 'We care about indie devs... so long as we control t

            Yeah, apart from all the facts I posted. If you care to say which part of my comment isn't factual then I'm happy to listen.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              That One Guy (profile), 28 Aug 2019 @ 2:21pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: 'We care about indie devs... so long as we contr

              ... Other than the part where you ignored literally the very next part of the comment pointing out how the 'rule' regarding exclusivity doesn't apply to major publisher games, completely undercutting your point?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    silentspectator (profile), 26 Aug 2019 @ 9:28pm

    Minor Correction

    and decided that he would be breaking his word to the public by entering into such a deal.

    Should be 'he wouldn't be breaking' I guess.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Agammamon, 26 Aug 2019 @ 10:06pm

    In that case, the moral case is much more clear than when Epic attempts to limit consumer choice the way they have.

    It still isn't 'clear'. The publisher chooses to publish where they think it will work for them. Its not 'moral' or 'immoral' for me to choose where I purchase something based on how much a supplier further up the chain gets.

    Take it more generally - I buy a box of cereal. Should I gather information on what percentages all the upstream suppliers get so I can choose the supply chain that maximises the revenue split of all upstream suppliers? Or should I just pick the least expensive option that meets my criteria?

    Buying from Steam rather than Epic can't be framed as a moral choice. There are simply too many things to consider that lead a publisher to publish a game on a specific platform.

    For example; Steam has a huge network, tons of features - for developers and gamers - all that stuff cost money. How much of that 30% split is paying for this development?

    Or this - you guys at Techdirt are pretty liberal, bordering (if not outright) socialist. Right now Epic is effectively selling at a loss in an attempt to corner a market. They're selling (in this case eating costs) in order to undercut a competitor and drive them from the market so that they're now dominant.

    How does that measure up, ethically, to Steam's 30% cut?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Solidus, 27 Aug 2019 @ 6:44am

      Re:

      You're getting a number of things mixed up. The moral case isn't coming from Techdirt. Epic themselves tried to frame their combination of exclusives and revenue split as making a moral case, which fails on its own terms.

      Their revenue split doesn't benefit indies, because it requires them to give up access to Steam's marketplace, hence, it's not done out of the kindness of their hearts. It's not a moral case, which they claim to be making.
      Giving up Steam's marketplace can be bad for an indie dev even in spite of a better revenue split because it means not reaching a larger number of potential clients, unless they choose to inconvenience themselves with yet another launcher. That's not good for the developers, and thus not done out of solidarity with them. While nobody expects Epic to do things out of solidarity, they said they were, and they actually aren't.
      Techdirt is calling Epic out on trying to weaponize developer exclusives through a revenue split, which it claims to do in order to help developers, but which doesn't actually help developers, because the conditions of the revenue split are bad for the developers.

      I know this was kinda redundant, but I thought you needed it, given you are pretty much a bootlicker, bordering (if not outright) on thinking anyone not a craven bootlicker is a pinko, but hey, it's not your fault that you have the forehead slope of an AM radio host.

      For the record, Techdirt leans pro-civil liberties and pro-consumer.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 7:23am

        Re: Re:

        You were doing so well right until the end there, when you went straight into 'flag/don't need to take serious' territory and therefore undercut the entire rest of your argument...

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          TFG, 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:13am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Yeah, that second to last paragraph just trashes an otherwise good post. Eesh.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Solidus, 27 Aug 2019 @ 3:57pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Well, to be fair, maybe it is best if mine is flagged- the start of the post was just a windup for that bad paragraph. I thought to call the toot out at tarring Techdirt as tankies. I'd disagree that the first half of my post was good, because it simply makes one statement and restates it three times- it was redundant, and that was intended to be abrasive, not informative. Should've used more caps I guess. There's always next time to stick the landing.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 7:42am

      Re:

      Take it more generally - I buy a box of cereal. Should I gather information on what percentages all the upstream suppliers get so I can choose the supply chain that maximises the revenue split of all upstream suppliers?

      Why try to maximize the split rather than the revenue? Some kind of punishment for people taking too much? From a purely monetary point of view, you might be better off selling it for $5 in one place and $6 in another, so your revenue is the same either way.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 10:01am

        Re: Re:

        And another way this breaks down is that in this case, the cereal manufacturer said it would be offering the cereal in one supermarket chain and began to do so, and then was offered an exclusivity deal from another one. Would taking that exclusivity deal and pulling its products from the shelves of the other chain be a moral issue?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Thad (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:54am

      Re:

      Its not 'moral' or 'immoral' for me to choose where I purchase something based on how much a supplier further up the chain gets.

      Morality is a subjective value judgement.

      Take it more generally - I buy a box of cereal.

      You're analogizing cereal to independently-developed video games. The two things are very different.

      Or this - you guys at Techdirt are pretty liberal, bordering (if not outright) socialist.

      Oh, now I get it. You are not a serious person.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 9:20am

      Re:

      Or this - you guys at Techdirt are pretty liberal, bordering (if not outright) socialist.

      [Asserts facts not in evidence.]

      How does that measure up, ethically, to Steam's 30% cut?

      By my estimation and for reasons you stated yourself (development costs of features Steam has that Epic doesn't), it is far more ethical to buy from Steam.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 26 Aug 2019 @ 10:39pm

    '... And lemme tell you, they are great bridges, the best.'

    To be clear, you can think that what Epic is doing is truly good for the industry

    ... And if you think that I've got some bridges to sell you.

    '... while also acknowledging that stories like this show pretty clearly that Epic appears to be losing the PR war it decided to wage.

    People don't like being lied to, forced to use a demonstrably inferior platform if they want to play their games, or having choice taken away from them, who knew?

    Again, the public is not on the side of exclusivity in exchange for higher splits for publishers.

    In addition to what I noted above what the public 'is not on the side of' is things that benefit everyone but them, especially those 'gains' for others means 'losses' for them in the form of less choice and having to use a demonstrably inferior platform if they want to play a certain game when it comes out.

    In that case, the messaging would be: "You can buy it on Steam and screw the gamemaker, or buy it on our platform and benefit them. Your choice." In that case, the moral case is much more clear than when Epic attempts to limit consumer choice the way they have.

    Just... no. The developers can make their choice of where they want to sell, but the customer is in no way bound by that choice into choosing where they want to buy based upon what will benefit anyone but them. They are already supporting the developer by buying the game, it is in no way 'immoral' or 'screwing the gamemaker' for the buyer to make their choice based upon their priorities rather than on what will give the developer a bigger cut.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Damien, 27 Aug 2019 @ 4:04am

      Re: '... And lemme tell you, they are great bridges, the best.'

      Do you like indie games? Do you want to be able to keep playing games made by the developers you enjoy? If so, supporting them by purchasing their games on whatever platform supports them best IS in your interest. The developers being railroaded into Epic's exclusives are small team or single developer studios. If you can't look past a single purchase and recognize that supporting a developer supports your ability to play more of their games that's just short-sighted.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 5:01am

        'Lose a finger, or lose the arm'

        Do you like indie games? Do you want to be able to keep playing games made by the developers you enjoy? If so, supporting them by purchasing their games on whatever platform supports them best IS in your interest.

        Not if doing so supports and encourages practices that I or someone else would rather see killed off before they become standard practice. Having a particular dev crash and burn, even if their past game(s) were good, is vastly preferable to seeing a toxic practice or action spread and become normalized because people continued to throw money at a dev/company employing it rather than making clear their displeasure by spending their money elsewhere.

        The equation's also more complex then simply 'do the devs get a bigger cut from an individual sale', in that a platform with a smaller cut may offset that in other features that result in more sales overall. If a game gives a 25% higher cut on platform A, but twice as many people are likely to buy a game if it's on platform B because of features it has and/or who's running it, then that bigger cut will still leave them behind.

        If you can't look past a single purchase and recognize that supporting a developer supports your ability to play more of their games that's just short-sighted.

        Nah, that's not falling into the 'the game is all the matters' mindset that some people fall prey to, where it doesn't matter what the developer or publisher does or how they act so long as the next game comes out as planned. That mindset is the reason the likes of EA are still around, because too many people only care about the games and ignore anything beyond them.

        Ignoring long-term consequences to the industry in general and instead focusing on 'supporting the developers, no matter the platform', no matter what that support encourages, that is the real short-sighted view.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:11am

          Re: 'Lose a finger, or lose the arm'

          Having a particular dev crash and burn, even if their past game(s) were good, is vastly preferable to seeing a toxic practice or action spread and become normalized because people continued to throw money at a dev/company employing it rather than making clear their displeasure by spending their money elsewhere.

          Case in point, several AAA game studios today should have been allowed to die a long time ago. I'm looking at you EA.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 5:31am

        Re: Re: '... And lemme tell you, they are great bridges, the bes

        Actually the majority of indie devs on the Epic store are known devs - they have either released high profile indie games in the past, had a successful kickstarter for the game or their game has got attention either from the press, at events such as E3 or by people wishlisting their game on steam.

        And that doesn't even include the exclusives they have signed with the bigger publishers like Ubisoft, Deepsilver and 2K.

        It is really unlikely that any of the games that took the Epic exclusive money would have struggled for either visibility or sales on steam. The kind of devs that struggle for visibility of Steam aren't even allowed on Epic.

        Also rather ironically buying exclusive games on Epic actually hurts the devs - Epic gives devs an advance against their first year sales - for example if a dev reckons they'll sell 500K copies in the first year Epic will pay for those sales up front, however this means the dev won't get paid again until they have sold the 500,001st copy on Epic.

        Which means it's better for a small dev if people waited a year to buy the game from Steam/GOG because they then get paid twice for those first 500K copies.

        Yes there is the lower cut on the Epic store but despite the press going about this being the main reason devs are flocking to Epic it in fact doesn't seem to be a factor (which suggest sales on Epic are really bad) as the devs of Hades and Ashen two of the first games to go Epic exclusive are now heavily advertising their Steam/GOG releases nearly three months before the exclusivity ends rather than pointing people to where they can actually buy the games already (which strong implies they are no where near reaching their sales advance and thus pushing people to Epic doesn't earn them anything).

        In addition to that apart from World War Z and Satisfactory we don't have any details on the sales figures for any Epic games (Well their was Metro Exodus but their figures were announced in such a weird way that they could only be bad).

        Which leads to the question of whether Epic is even good for the long term success of indies - Yes it's good for those devs that get paid for their first year of sales, but what about the future if nobody bought your first game then you have lost your easiest audience for your next game (you'll also have no feedback on what you did wrong with the first game) and will Epic pay you for your second game? Plus when you release on other stores after your exclusive period ends your old game is now fighting against new games and no doubt there will be resentment from other devs who were rejected by Epic and now have to compete for visibility with your game that has already been paid for. (the problem with visibility on Steam isn't the rubbish being released, but that their are just too many good enough games being released).

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 6:55am

          Re: Re: Re: '... And lemme tell you, they are great bridges, the

          Also rather ironically buying exclusive games on Epic actually hurts the devs - Epic gives devs an advance against their first year sales - for example if a dev reckons they'll sell 500K copies in the first year Epic will pay for those sales up front, however this means the dev won't get paid again until they have sold the 500,001st copy on Epic.

          If that's how they're doing things I can't help but wonder what mechanism is in place should a dev say, alienate a large chunk of their fan-base and therefore tank their sales to be significantly lower than they were estimated to be, as I can't imagine Epic would just write off the difference themselves and let the devs off with no penalty.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 6:56am

        Re: Re: '... And lemme tell you, they are great bridges, the bes

        "If so, supporting them by purchasing their games on whatever platform supports them best IS in your interest"

        Not if the downsides of purchasing outweigh the good.

        "If you can't look past a single purchase and recognize that supporting a developer supports your ability to play more of their games that's just short-sighted'

        No, what's short-sighted is supporting Epic. Better to let the industry know that consumers aren't going . to put up with a bad deal and nip this in the bud early, than hope Epic will give people better deals next time round. Vote with your wallet, for sure - but vote for the devs who won't sell you out the moment something "better" comes along.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 4:54am

    The other thing not mentioned is that in this case Epic waited until the developer released a trailer announcing the Steam release date (which was in about a weeks time) before they contacted the dev offering an exclusive deal.

    At this point it seems that Epic are riling people up on purpose, and it's not like this game came out of nowhere it's been in the list of top wishlisted steam games for better part of a year (It's rather ironic that Epic keep using the public steam wishlist to find indie games to pinch when they refuse to include a wishlist on their own store).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 5:07am

      Re:

      The other thing not mentioned is that in this case Epic waited until the developer released a trailer announcing the Steam release date (which was in about a weeks time) before they contacted the dev offering an exclusive deal.

      That was a particularly sleazy/stupid move on their part, yes, though one that seems to have blown up in their face nicely.

      'Hey, now that you've confirmed your game is going to release on Steam in a short period of time how'd you like to utterly destroy your credibility and trustworthiness by signing an exclusive deal with us?'

      Thankfully this dev at least was smart enough and had enough integrity to realize that short term profits at the cost of betraying your customer base may work out in the short-term but it's a really bad idea if you plan to stick around long-term(which they apparently plan on doing). Doesn't matter if you're guaranteed to succeed with one game if no-one wants to buy any games after that.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:07am

        Re: Re:

        'Hey, now that you've confirmed your game is going to release on Steam in a short period of time how'd you like to utterly destroy your credibility and trustworthiness by signing an exclusive deal with us?'

        That is all that needs saying regarding epic employees as of now.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 5:50am

    Exclusivity doesn't promote an attitude of looking out for publisher/developer interests. By its very nature, exclusive deals cut off revenue avenues, which results in lost potential sales.

    I cannot fathom why any company would proverbially shoot itself in the foot by closing off revenue streams for the sake of a quick windfall. I have yet to see any exclusive game benefit when it comes to sales, and I challenge anyone to prove this.

    I fondly remember when Capcom worked with Nintendo to create Resident Evil 4 for the GameCube, a console which was struggling in sales. The belief was that Nintendo could market the game to the "hardcore" audience, and hope this would push hardware sales.

    Not only did the exclusive event fail miserably, but sales did not improve. Capcom, thankfully, released the game on other platforms, where it went on to become one of the best Resident Evil games in the franchise (personal note: screw that damn escort chapter).

    It seems to me Epic is making this personal. The company seems to be spending far more than a game's worth just to tie it exclusively to the store.

    For devs/pubs, I'm sure this is great news because their game has "sold" enough copies for them that, should the game fail upon release, they've lost nothing.

    It's a ridiculous situation, a rich company throwing around its money for the sake of it, rather than focusing on what makes a store like Steam well received.

    Then again, the Billion Dollar Curse™ has always caused companies to do stupid things.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 6:05am

      Re:

      "I have yet to see any exclusive game benefit when it comes to sales, and I challenge anyone to prove this."

      With your take on console exclusives, it's difficult to prove that they sold better as exclusives than they would if they were not, but there are a large number of exclusive game series that sell very well. Nintendo has Mario, Zelda, and Pokemon. Sony has Gran Turismo, Spider-Man, and Red Dead. Microsoft has Halo, Forza, and Tomb Raider.

      Of course, console exclusives are a little different. That's "translating a book into a different language" rather than "choosing to sell the book only at Target". In the case of Steam vs. Epic, it's the exact same product that can be used in the exact same way on the exact same devices. Not quite the same as writing a game for the PS4 and choosing not to port it to the Switch.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    crade (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 7:04am

    You are kindof conflating two things here. Having an exclusive deal with epic in itself is not being framed as morally wrong here, it's lying, deception, bait and switch and other such going back on your word that is being "framed" as wrong.. which really shouldn't need much of a frame. He had already said the game would be available on steam, and he specifically says that is why he thinks it would be wrong to take the exclusivity agreement.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:20am

      Re:

      Having an exclusive deal with epic in itself is not being framed as morally wrong here

      I, respectfully, disagree. Console exclusives are one thing, but the only reason that launcher exclusives on the same platform (PC) exist is to make whatever particular company made the launcher more money. From the consumer perspective, it does nothing but inconvenience them if they have to have multiple different launchers to play their entire library of games.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      TFG, 27 Aug 2019 @ 8:24am

      Re:

      Well, the other part of this that could be considered morally wrong is Epic's stance of "Exclusive deal or no deal" - especially given that they only approached the dev after the steam release was announced.

      Epic themselves (Tim Sweeney in particular) have attempted to frame this whole thing as them fighting for a better cut for developers. However their actions make that questionable. They would have far more of a leg to stand on in arguing that that is their goal if they gave up the forced exclusivity angle and just plain offered developers a better cut.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Toom1275 (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 9:30am

        Re: Re:

        It's pretty obvious that Epic's goal is not to supplement Steam's "monopoly," but to supplant it.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        crade (profile), 27 Aug 2019 @ 1:10pm

        Re: Re:

        There is a lot wrong with the deals as well in my opinion.. Epic also has this sleezy leverage thing going with their engine licensing.. But Marhulets doesn't seem to say that he has any issue with anything Epic is doing, he just says he thinks it would be wrong to go back on his word.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 11:40am

    How to fracture PC gaming

    Do exactly what Epic is doing. They are single handily moving PC gaming in a backwards direction.

    If the publishers won't take a stand against this, and clearly they won't. Then the ONLY people that can stop this are the gamers. DO NOT buy from the Epic store. That will send an 'Exclusive' message to the publishers. How much of an extra cut will they be getting when sales for the first 6 months are 50% below estimates?

    But we won't, as soon as the newest shiniest thing comes out, people are going to run to the Epic store. I have and will continue to stay strong, even with the temptation of Borderlands 3.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 1:18pm

      Re: How to fracture PC gaming

      DO NOT buy from the Epic store.

      I have not, nor do I plan to. I can wait for the exclusivity deals to expire, but then again I don't typically buy any game as soon as it comes out (with some exceptions). I usually pick it up 6-12 months after release.

      even with the temptation of Borderlands 3.

      Same, though it was never really a temptation. I already have Steam, Ubi-launcher, Origin, and Battle.net. I don't need or want a fifth launcher. If it's only available on Epic's launcher, I don't need it.

      One of the reasons why Steam was so popular was because you had all your games under one, organized application. This was something some people did ad-hoc on their own by creating their own local launchers to bring all their individually installed games together before Steam was a thing. It's really the same concept as organizing your music collection. What Epic is doing is the opposite of that.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Aug 2019 @ 1:59pm

    All I can say is the platform fanboy wars are even crazier on PC than consoles.

    The animosity is stupid enough already on consoles where getting a game for the "wrong" platform would at least require you to buy expensive hardware. On PC it's just a store website, and yet people act like selling a game on the "wrong" one is like kicking puppies or something.

    Fanboyism is silly.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      TFG, 27 Aug 2019 @ 6:19pm

      Re:

      This isn't a fanboy thing for the majority of us, and it's not quite accurate to portray it that way. I'm fine with games not being on Steam. I have a rather large library of non-Steam games that simply launch themselves.

      The point is that Epic is just straight up purchasing exclusivity to their launcher. My beef is not that they're preventing it from being on Steam, it's that they are trying to force me onto their platform, which is a steaming pile of garbage to use for someone like me, by simply buying a lock on access for other people's products.

      They're also doing this by swooping in on games that were already basically announced for release on other distribution platforms, so they're additionally pulling the rug out from under people.

      Battle.net, I don't have an issue with - because it's an exclusive launcher for games created by the people who also make the launcher. Uplay I don't really give a crap about, because while the launcher is required for Ubisoft games, I can get those games on the platform of my choice, and it's overall a background thing that I can ignore.

      If the exclusivity thing weren't a factor, if it were solely a case of "buy the game on Epic because then the devs get a better cut" there wouldn't be the uproar. People who can't stand the inconvenience of the Epic store and launcher could simply buy elsewhere. People who can tolerate it and want the game there because of the better dev cut could support that mission and buy on the Epic store. The masses wouldn't mind because there would be nothing to mind. Anyone complaining about a game's existence on the Epic store would be pointed to it's availability on other platforms, and told to shut up.

      But Epic has shit the bed with their approach to the whole thing, and having an actually shitty product, so people are angry. This isn't a fanboyism problem - this is a company doing things that anger consumers, and consumers exercising their right to complain about it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 28 Aug 2019 @ 12:13am

      Re:

      So, you haven't bothered to understand the actual complaints?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Close

Add A Reply

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Techdirt Logo Gear
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.