"World War Z" Studio: Epic Exclusivity Is "the Best Deal for Players and Developers"

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Feb 23, 2019.

  1. wizdum

    wizdum [H]ard|Gawd

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    Thats odd, I never played those exact games, but one of the things I liked about early Steam was the ability to install games with the CD/DVD, and only have to download the updates. I lived in a very rural town in the middle of nowhere, so bandwidth was scarce. I can see how that would be annoying if you only played single player games where updates aren't always necessary, or didn't have a group of friends that you play with regularly. For multiplayer games, where updates were required prior to play, the auto updates were much preferred to manually downloading zip files from the publisher, and installing them in sequential order. And the Steam community helped all my friends get into the same games, without having to send server names/IP Addresses via AIM/MSN or one of the early game friend list services that only some people were on.

    To put this another way, to all the people saying this is good for competition, would you be OK with a brick and mortar store, like Best Buy, having an exclusive over some new game?

    Sorry, if you want the new hotness, you have to drive to a Best Buy to get it, you know, to benefit the market and all.
     
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  2. aaronspink

    aaronspink 2[H]4U

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    Also Epic's store doesn't really do jack. Steam has an almost 2 decade long track record of protecting their users investments, supporting their users, and responding to their user's needs. There are plenty of fly by night stores like epic's that have popped up over time that no longer exist including ones from companies with nearly infinitely more money than epic.
     
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  3. Delicieuxz

    Delicieuxz Gawd

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    Valve already does take a smaller cut than the 30% you claim:

    30% of the first $10 million in sales
    25% of the next $40 million in sales
    20% of all the rest of sales


    How much do you think it costs to make a game and how much do you think games make in return?

    Metro Exodus will be more profitable for THQ / Deep Silver on Steam at $60 than it will be on Epic at $50: https://hardforum.com/threads/metro-exodus-is-an-epic-store-exclusive.1976314/page-6#post-1044061477
     
  4. ChoGGi

    ChoGGi [H]ard|Gawd

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    Depending on THQs liquid money situation the lump sum could be more useful than "in the future" money.
     
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  5. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    Ahh...the Steam Mafia didn't disappoint.
     
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  6. NWRMidnight

    NWRMidnight Limp Gawd

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    Has nothing to do with Steam Mafia.. but more to do with business 101.
     
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  7. wizdum

    wizdum [H]ard|Gawd

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    G-4.jpg
     
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  8. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron 2[H]4U

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    Well, for starters, they're the only store front actually interested in having it run well on Linux. So there's that. I'm not going to give money to a store front that doesn't bother to appeal to me as a Linux user.

    Next, VALVe has a lot of public trust built-up. Things like their return process, the way they would allow you to download the game as many times as you wanted (remember when DRM limited you to a certain number of installs before your key stopped working?), and plenty of other things they've done over their history. A brand new face isn't going to magically and instantaneously gain all this same trust. It takes time.

    There's other reasons too, but perhaps consider these.

     
  9. joobjoob

    joobjoob Gawd

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    I bet selling it for 5-10$ less on epic would have been more positive PR approach. Do you think green man gaming offers discounts on new high profile games for fun? It's to help put them on the map. Forced exclusivity just builds resentment. PC gamers aren't console crowd, we don't brag about exclusives.
     
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  10. odditory

    odditory [H]ardness Supreme

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    Nailed it. On the bright side, I happen to know word travels fast in videogame development circles, and the awful sales performance of games on Epic will only turn other publishers off from taking a bag of Fortnite money to kill their game.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  11. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice [H]ardness Supreme

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    In other news "Those receiving tons of lobbyist money suddenly found espousing similar views". It should be no surprise that someone willing to sell their soul/ethics etc.. to Epic for a big sweetheart deal will parrot whatever drek is required to validate that exchange.

    Epic has proved themselves hostile to the overall health of PC gaming through their actions since opening their own, proprietary Store.
     
  12. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    So your take on Business 101 is that Saber Interactive doesn't know what they are doing, has no idea how to market their product, has no idea about their own bottom line, and what would make them money in their situation based on whatever deals they have made or not made. AND instead they should have just charged $5 more and had their product on Steam also. And you the voice of reason had this answer the whole time and didn't bother to tell them.

    Brilliant.
     
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  13. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    The puzzle piece you're missing is the sheer number of Fortnite players. As many as 11 million CONCURRENT players and some 200 million registered users. To put in perspective, Steam hits 16 to 17 million concurrent users across all their games with DOTA2 hitting around 1 million concurrent users. So a compelling game on Epic isn't necessarily destined to be a failure in numbers just because it isn't on Steam.
     
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  14. odditory

    odditory [H]ardness Supreme

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    I'm not sure what you're even arguing or why, but if any of that mattered or translated meaningfully to retail sales then Epic wouldn't need to resort to desperation measures like bribing publishers to kill their game.

    Problem is FortNite is a free game - Epic's one trick pony, played by lots and lots of kids and teenagers that grew up with the free game / mobile game mentality and have never paid for a retail AAA that wasn't on a console. I doubt most see the Epic store as anything other than a "Fortnite launcher". So not the ideal demographic to put a $50 or $60 AAA game in front of and hope that they buy.
     
  15. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    https://www.pcgamesn.com/fortnite/fortnite-battle-royale-player-numbers

    I don't care. I have Steam. I have Epic. I'm not going to buy World War Z no matter what platform it's on. But I don't care where they release their game either. Steam does not have a single game on its platform as big as Fortnite. I don't know if they have pop-up ads like Steam does every time I log in to promote specials. My point is that you can't make a "Steam has all the market exposure" argument when 200 million people are signed up for a different platform in addition to or in lieu of Steam.

    This isn't a console exclusive type of argument. You can download and use both programs if you really want Metro Exodus or WWZ in addition to Steam.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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  16. ChoGGi

    ChoGGi [H]ard|Gawd

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    You can turn that off in settings>interface>notify me about stuff
     
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  17. Nebell

    Nebell [H]ard|Gawd

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    Epic can eat shit and not only because of their store.
     
  18. tetris42

    tetris42 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Console makers buy games being developed for PC and turn them into console exclusives, nobody bats an eye. A PC game keeps the game on PC, but sells it under a different store, people lose their damn minds.
     
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  19. aaronspink

    aaronspink 2[H]4U

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    Someone would have to be blind and deaf to make the statement you are making. There has been rather significant push back repeatedly every time this happens and even when they aren't exclusive because the consolization dumbs things down.
     
  20. tetris42

    tetris42 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yes, when they're NOT exclusive and there are shitty ports, yes, people complain. Was there outrage for Alan Wake? Gears of War 2 and 3? Halo? Heavy Rain? Detroit Become Human? Sunset Overdrive? Destiny?

    I swear I've seen more crying over the Epic store than any game that started off on PC, than moved to console combined. For some reason, requiring people to buy a game on a different platform, more restricted controls, and reduced graphics is nothing compared to requiring people to spend 5 minutes on another store.
     
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  21. aaronspink

    aaronspink 2[H]4U

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    Yes, Yes, Yes, david cage junk, david cage junk, meh, yes.
     
  22. NWRMidnight

    NWRMidnight Limp Gawd

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    Did I hit a nerve or what.. damn, don't take things so serious, it isn't healthy.

    I would suggest you go take business 101.. then get back to us.. as already explained previously, volume is the key. On steam, even at $5 more per copy will have substantially higher volume of sales netting them a larger profit over all(this would still be true even if there was no difference in price), not to mention, selling $5 cheaper on Epic means they are automatically losing $3.50 if it was on steam, and $4.40 if it was on Epic for the same price. Saber Interactive also have a track record of crappy games with crappy marketing.. so.. yea.. carry on with your belief that they know what they are doing and believe that other devs and/or publishers should listen to them, or the consumer.. The only reason they are spinning the $5 less is to make it appear that the consumer is winning, when in reality, the consumer is getting shafted due to the lower quality of service, substantially lower quality platform, and eliminating consumer choice. Then you add in the added fees that Epic is passing onto their customers (credit card fees, etc) But, it appears you are taking the bait.. hook, line and sinker!

    But I guess I shouldn't be surprised.. the gaming community is turning into a bunch of lemmings who just follow along mindlessly.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  23. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    You don't know what the difference will be. You are making the assumption that Steam sales will dwarf Epic sales. As I already noted, Fortnite has a huge install base which dwarfs any single Steam game. The assumption that people won't notice it because it is not on Steam is just that....an assumption.
     
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  24. odditory

    odditory [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yep. Epic harping on profit split and "We charge publishers 18% less than on Steam" is classic misdirection and an insult to anyone's intelligence since the volume won't be equal -- not even close. Its also a lazy argument for anyone to say that platform loyalty is what's on trial here. It's not. It's the lack of imagination or doing anything particularly better than Steam that Epic is failing at.

    They have every right to create and manage a store and make it a great one, but FFS use some of that Fortnite money to be disruptively better than Steam. It's lowhanging fruit -- Valve already did the heavy lifting of getting content delivery to where it is now; Epic doesn't have to reinvent the wheel. They can copy the best aspects of Steam, and improve on the aspects people complain about. If Valve really "does nothing but exist and watch money roll in" as you often hear then it should be easy to start swaying customers over and building positive word of mouth. But Epic seems to want everything overnight without work or innovation.

    Again, Steam's 30% fee is an expression of the volume you get by publishing there. Margin isn't as relevant on a digital good where infinite copies can be generated with no overhead - the only hit is to the store's CDN bill (bandwidth) which is part of what the 30% fee is paying for. And you can be damn sure that if Epic ever approaches Steam levels of annual CDN spend, they'll be saying "sorry but due to increased overhead our 18% split is no longer sustainable." Nowhere have they guaranteed they'll never raise it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  25. wizdum

    wizdum [H]ard|Gawd

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    Fortnite is a free game, of course it has a large install base. I wonder what percentage of that fanbase is old enough to have a credit card.

    I still can't believe people are actually arguing that exclusivity is a good thing.
     
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  26. Bigshrimp

    Bigshrimp Limp Gawd

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    Microsoft is still doing platform exclusivity with their Xbox One/Windows 10 games. Then you have EA doing Origin only games. Now Bethesda with Fallout 76, Ubisoft with Division 2. Activision Blizzard, and I go could go on. Now Epic Games is trying to make 3rd party exclusives a thing and splintering the market in the process.
     
  27. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    I'm arguing the exclusivity is irrelevant when you can install both programs for free. This isn't another $400 console purchase. If Epic wants to waive a big bag of cash around...who cares? No one here is in a position to run the numbers for Saber Interactive. On the consumer end, the game is $5 cheaper.
     
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  28. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    And why wouldn't they? Why pay Steam all that extra money if you think people will buy your product without it? Keep that 20-30% in house. Sure Steam is convenient, but they are in the business of making money just like everyone else.
     
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  29. NWRMidnight

    NWRMidnight Limp Gawd

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    LOL!! EPIC!! You believe the Fortnite install base is the key the success! That is some serious humor right there. Fortnite and World War Z are in two completely different games categories that are worlds apart and appeal to completely two different groups of people, which means very little of the sales will come from Fortnite install base (The only reason there is such a large install base is because Fortnite is free).

    It's all irreverent, as the install base of a single game means nothing. Steam isn't about the number of copies of a single game.. It's about he steam user base that use the service beyond a game launcher, which is all most Fortnite players see Epic as: just a a launcher for Fortnite.. nothing more. Steam has 14 concurrent users per day using there service.. Epic doesn't even come close, unless you count Fortnite, which is still only 10 Million per day.. of which 95% of them are blind to anything outside of Fortnite and it's game Launcher.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  30. wizdum

    wizdum [H]ard|Gawd

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    They could have simply made the game $5 cheaper on their store, and then had it at the normal price on Steam.
     
  31. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    At the end of the day, does it matter?
     
  32. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    I don't know what to tell you. I'm just postulating an argument. Neither one of us are in the negotiating room running the numbers. And if Saber Interactive goes broke it doesn't affect me. Don't buy the game if you can't buy it on Steam then.

    Personally, I play Ubisoft games (FarCry / AC). The fact that I have to use uPlay instead of Steam doesn't affect me other than using a different launching program. The fact that 30% of sales goes to Valve (as most games will never hit the cut off to hit the lower brackets) is a factor. I'm just pointing out that it's becoming more relevant as publishers are looking for options to keep money in their pockets.

    I understand the volume argument, but if it's a game that a publisher thinks is going to sell anyway (Division 2, Metro Exodus, etc.) they have leverage also.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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  33. wizdum

    wizdum [H]ard|Gawd

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    Yes. I'd rather not go back to having to use a third party program to connect with my friends, and install 30 different game launchers on my PC, all of which need to be launched at random times, or constantly running in the background, to keep games updated.
     
  34. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    But you already do that on Steam depending on the game you play. As I noted, there are plenty of games on Steam that require 3rd party launchers. I like Steam. But I'm a realist. I wouldn't pay $5 extra just for a Steam copy of a game, especially when I already have most of the other launchers installed anyway.
     
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  35. NWRMidnight

    NWRMidnight Limp Gawd

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    Again it's all business 101.. something you are not grasping. The 30% in the big picture means nothing over all for profits to the publisher/developers.. it is all manipulation, smoke and mirrors from Epic and even Discord as they are using other methods of making up the difference that they are not getting from the publisher/devs. In other words, they are not doing it cheaper, they are just covering the costs by different means.

    I have a lot of games that are ubisoft games, and I don't have to touch Ubisofts launcher once I entered my credentials and authenticated them the first time, it is all handled by steam after that.
     
  36. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj [H]ard as it Gets

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    I am grasping the business 101. If I sell 5 million copies of a game at $50 and have to pay 30% to Valve, I'm netting $175 million. If I sell 4 million copies at $50 and pay 12% to Epic, I net $176 million. Your real argument is that you think that being on Steam is going to mean that sales will be at least 20% higher. I don't know if that's true or not true.

    I don't know what Ubisoft games you are playing, but FC5 and AC: Origins/Odyssey launches uPlay everytime. I think older games like FC3 and maybe AC up through Unity were the way you describe.

    Edit: I read Valve's fee schedule wrong and I'm not going to recalculate ;). Either way, most games don't sell 5 million copies anyway, especially at full price. My point is that we don't know how much more a game will sell on Steam vs. not on Steam, and we also don't know what kind of bag of cash Epic was throwing around (I would guess enough to cover the $5 difference in price). I would assume Steam sales when the game is sub-$10 is going to be a chunk of the total purchases, but the high profit sales at release is where the real money is. I don't know if the Steam advantage is going to make that big difference in the first month of sales for people who would have bought the game anyway at full price (From what I've read Epic didn't seem to hurt Metro Exodus sales enough to say they made a bad decision to pull out of Steam). Coupled with any incentives Epic threw their way might very well mean that they made more money on Epic.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  37. ZodaEX

    ZodaEX 2[H]4U

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    If you disagree then keep on giving your money who's practices bother you and make you complain. No body's stopping you.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2019
  38. Lakados

    Lakados [H]ard|Gawd

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    Since Fortnight's launch, it alone has made more money than all of Valve's ventures combined. So enough of them ?

    NOTE:
    Not since the beginning of Valve just since the launch date of Fortnight to the time of this posting.
     
  39. Deathroned

    Deathroned Gawd

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    Against Steam rules, and to avoid Review Bombs