The Epic Games Store Is Now Live

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by cageymaru, Dec 7, 2018.

  1. cageymaru

    cageymaru [H]ard|News

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    Yesterday we reported that Epic Games was launching its own game store that would only take a 12% cut of sales compared to the 30% that the Steam Store takes. Today I'm happy to report that the Epic Games Store is now live. From December 14th to December 27th the game Subnautica will be free and the free game will change every two weeks throughout 2019. Epic Games is funding the giveaways. An extended interview with Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney elaborates on the costs of running a digital storefront, VR support, its DRM policy and more.


    While running Fortnite we learned a lot about the cost of running a digital store on PC. The math is quite simple: we pay around 2.5 to 3.5 percent for payment processing for major payment methods, less than 1.5 percent for CDN costs (assuming all games are updated as often as Fortnite), and between 1 and 2 percent for variable operating and customer support costs. Fixed costs of developing and supporting the platform become negligible at a large scale. In our analysis, stores charging 30 percent are marking up their costs by 300 to 400 percent. But with developers receiving 88 percent of revenue and Epic receiving 12 percent, this store will still be a profitable business for us. The Epic Games store is a long-term effort that we'll be extending and improving for years. Ultimately, we hope competition between stores means better deals for all developers!
     
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  2. Darunion

    Darunion 2[H]4U

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    I do like these kinds of announcements. I hate the ones where "in a year or two it might come out".
     
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  3. PantherBlitz

    PantherBlitz Limp Gawd

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    Nice way to open a store.
     
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  4. cageymaru

    cageymaru [H]ard|News

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    I love Steam and GoG. But I also love competition as it makes companies innovate to be the best. I downloaded the client last night.

    I think Super Meat Boy is after that.
     
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  5. andrewaggb

    andrewaggb Limp Gawd

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    So... any bets on how long it takes before Epic stops making games?

    I wonder if this translates to cheaper game prices or just more profit for the developers? Otherwise it's kinda hard to get excited about yet another launcher/store. Already have origin, steam, ubisoft, epic, blizzard, and bethesda. I guess I have the epic launcher already but if it get's big like steam's and updates every time I log into it that'll be annoying. Also for fornite epic caps how many accounts I can use my credit card on... So I have to use different payment methods for different kids, which is kinda annoying.

    Speaking of annoying... Maybe all these launchers can figure out how to tell each other you're in a game. Super annoying when all of a sudden your game starts lagging and it's because another launcher decided to download and install an update while you are playing something else. But if you don't run them all the time you're greeted with a launcher and multiple game updates when you try to sign-in....
     
  6. Darunion

    Darunion 2[H]4U

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    Even though I hate the complexity this is creating for pc gaming, I will try it as well. Sales are important to me so having multiple opportunities to save a few bucks is worth it. Steam is nice but it could use some work which hopefully this will kick them into gear again. They have become a bit comfortable.
     
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  7. Armenius

    Armenius I Drive Myself to the [H]ospital

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    upload_2018-12-7_11-47-0.png
     
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  8. SomeoneElse

    SomeoneElse [H]ard|Gawd

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  9. PantherBlitz

    PantherBlitz Limp Gawd

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    Those are not mutually exclusive. More profit gives the devs more room to lower prices. More profit also lowers the break-even point needed to fund development which lowers the risk in making games that don't have "Call of ..." in the title.
     
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  10. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    Competition is good for the market. Hopefully it will make Valve lower their fees to be more attractive to developers.



    That said, if a title isn't on Steam, I'm not going to buy it.

    No way, no how, no exceptions.

    Steam is where I have my library. I don't want to have several different libraries each with their own client which is probably spying on me and reporting home to the mothership, and taking more system resources running in the background.

    I want a single unified interface for all of my game needs, and that interface is Steam.

    I am not a big enough fan of any game franchise to let an exclusive change my mind, and I would sooner pay for a game on Steam, than get it for free using any other client, so the Subnautica thing won't sway me. This is a non-negotiable for me.
     
  11. Jovian

    Jovian Limp Gawd

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    Return policy is pretty decent. Im cool with store credit as long as their library grows, which I expect it to with the cheaper fees for publishers.

    "We're launching with manual refunds through player support, and automated refunds will follow soon. We expect to provide each user with "no-questions-asked" refund tokens to use in the first 14 days after buying a game."
     
  12. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    It will be interesting to see what game devs do as the market for online games retail becomes more competitive.

    I hate developers who go the exclusive route, and only sell games in their own platform. I boycott them as long as they do this.

    Developers will - however - have an incentive to steer customers towards using stores which take a smaller chunk of the revenue. They could sell them exclusively there, but then they risk missing out on sales to customers like me who will not use other stores no matter what.

    A better route would likely be to sell the titles at a higher price in the stores which are less favorable to them fee wise. I'd be willing to put up with this. I'd pay 20% more for a game in order to get it on Steam.
     
  13. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics I don't get it

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    Bottom line is more profit means they make more profit, period. Why should they lower prices for the consumer if that's the going rate at which games are being sold, if anything you might see a shift from developers using Steam as their platform to distribute games because they take what 30%? or something obnoxiously large (there was a story about it here a few weeks back... already forgot the number)
     
  14. Darunion

    Darunion 2[H]4U

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    I imagine the market would not allow for a $72 launch day price though. An alternative could be a way to enable cross-library. Maybe with a verified key they can send you one that is already enabled to you via the other platform (so you cant sell or give away keys). Might need some form of account linking.
     
  15. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I'm not convinced 30% is necessarily obnoxiously large.

    Lets say we are dealing with a launch day price of $50. 30% of that is $15.

    For that $15 they are committing to host a 40+GB title for all time, pushing out updates and allowing unlimited downloads for that time. I wonder how much that costs them. You know, servers, storage, bandwidth, system maintenance, etc. etc. I don't have a good way to estimate these costs, but I'm sure they aren't insignificant.

    And that 30% is still WAY better than the deals the game companies used to have with traditional retailers. Firs the publishers would take their cut for pressing CD's, assembling boxes and manuals and distributing it to retailers. Then retailers would do a 100% markup, and have a guaranteed buyback provision if any box was damaged or returned opened from a customer.

    That said, if Epic thinks they can do it for less, then that is a good thing. Being more efficient and all.

    As long as it isn't a temporary thing where they operate at break even or a loss in order to lure in developers, and then jack the price up later. Or if they start cutting back on amenities to buyers to make it work. Maybe you can no longer download the title unlimited times? Etc. etc.
     
  16. Ocellaris

    Ocellaris Ginger @le, an alcoholic's best friend.

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    Get a less shitty router and downloads won’t slow down your gaming.
     
  17. horskh

    horskh Limp Gawd

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    I'm conflicted by this. On the one hand I know competition is good for customers. But on the other hand I like having one spot with all of my games, just like I use one web browser. It would be nice if we could make a "games browser" which makes use of some kind of open internet standard, and any games publisher can provide their games, and any customer can use any browser client to view the collection of games for sale and to manage their library of purchased games.
     
  18. Dahkoht

    Dahkoht Limp Gawd

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    Ashen on there came out of nowhere for me. Watched some of it on twitch and just picked it up , only played a few minutes of it but love the art style and seems like an awesome game , looking forward to more time with it.
     
  19. Domingo

    Domingo Skip My Posts

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    One of my coworkers absolutely loves Subnautica, so I'll have to give that a shot. Tough to argue with free.
     
  20. benedict

    benedict n00b

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    While I hate your policy of using only Steam, I understand there are plenty of people like you. Unfortunately such policies guarantee Steam's monopoly on the market. What's more, what you're proposing cannot happen. Steam only allows games on its platform on the condition that the game cannot be sold for less anywhere else.
     
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  21. DPI

    DPI Nitpick Police

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    Citation needed.

    I'm not aware of any conditional requirements for publishing on Steam. Even DRM is optional.
     
  22. DPI

    DPI Nitpick Police

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    Well they've been promoting it for a year on Steam, enjoying free publicity and discussions creating buzz there, then without notice to those users took a bribe check to make it Epic exclusive.

    Steam users are rightly annoyed for the zero communication, and if Ashen does end up on Steam later, I'd expect a user boycott for how the developer left them in the dark.

    Epic throwing around Fortnite money to keep titles off of Steam doesn't feel like "increasing competition" so much as trying to add another silo and monopoly. One of the reasons Steam has remained respected is *because* Valve hasn't engaged in lame exclusivity console tactics.
     
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  23. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I'm wondering about this too.

    The game Subnautica that Epic is is offring for free on Epic is currently selling for $24.99 on Steam, so that appears to be a contradiction right off the bat.
     
  24. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics I don't get it

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    Yeah I'll admit I don't know how much boxed games in a traditional store cost to the distribute. But 30% is large when you have a large title, lets say you sell a million games (I'm guessing GTA games get to this level on the PC) and you get this while it's still full retail, so $60 million x 30% = 18 million to host 80 gigs of game, again I'll plead ignorance of cost of servers/bandwidth but I can't imagine it gets that high... unless you talk to comcast reps then yeah sure 80,000 terabytes is like billions of dollars :D
     
  25. rudy

    rudy [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Epic will raise their cut over time, right now they just see a great opportunity with fortnite to break into the market that is difficult to get into. This is every companies game plan, discord, ea all of them but once they establish they will raise their cut, and change rules.
     
  26. alamox

    alamox Gawd

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    EPIC could be a real competitor to steam ( finaly ), i just hope they don't open the gate too wide, because if their incentives are too good, they will end up with a flood of crappy scamy cash grab games, just like mobile stores.
     
  27. RobCalleg

    RobCalleg [H]Lite

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    Valve will have to start making games because of this.

    Why should new young customers even download Steam when they get their first computer? They are gonna get Fortnite first and then when they are finally bored they will buy games on the Epic store because they are already there.

    I only use Steam because all my friends are on there and I have a hundred games (and EA/Ubisoft games suck) I’m stuck in that ecosystem. I’ll continue to use that ecosystem. Ecosystems are hard to get out of especially when so much time and money and real/online friends are invested.

    Epic will overtake Steam in a few years if they don’t start making exclusive games again. Valve is about to lose Gen Z.
     
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  28. Deathroned

    Deathroned Gawd

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    finally glad to have someone I share a name with on Hard lol

    its all over r/Gamedev , r/unrealengine
     
  29. alamox

    alamox Gawd

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    not true, games are cheaper on other platforms, and not the shady one, even legit stores like humblebundle
     
  30. DPI

    DPI Nitpick Police

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    I can't find anything addressing this in either of those places, can you? I'm going to remain skeptical of the claim "Steam only allows games on its platform on the condition that the game cannot be sold for less anywhere else", since there are tons of games on Steam that are cheaper at other stores (GOG, Origin, uPlay, etc)
     
  31. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    So sad that they are going to get themselves locked into an ecosystem over such a lame game. Seriously, Minecraft meets PUBG?

    At least in our time we got locked into Steam over Half-Life 2 and Counter-Strike (which was amazing at the time but admittedly didn't age well)
     
  32. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    *Shrug* Already had an account when I downloaded the UT4 Engine demo. Free games, inexpensive games from time to time and also possibly a new competitor to Steam? What is not to like.
     
  33. SeymourGore

    SeymourGore 2[H]4U

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    Maybe this new battle over digital platform exclusives will be the kick in the pants Valve needs to release Half-life 3.
     
  34. Darunion

    Darunion 2[H]4U

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    I promise you that you would hate it. It could never live up to expectations at this point. And I dunno who is left from the original team but even if some are still there, they have changed in their mindsets anyways. It is best it just dies off strong instead of some weak ass game with lootboxes and a battle royale mode.
     
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  35. joobjoob

    joobjoob Gawd

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    Between this and GOG I am very pleased and will make a point to spend at both. it's very rare in my 40 years that anything moves towards less control and wins for us little guys.
     
  36. illli

    illli [H]ard|Gawd

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    Not sure if this is worth a new topic, but I came across a forum post indicating what seems like a significant amount of spying going on with the epic software
     
  37. Armenius

    Armenius I Drive Myself to the [H]ospital

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  38. Krenum

    Krenum [H]ardForum Junkie

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    ....And apparently ready to deep dive into your Steam account and spy on you.

    Have fun!