News Epic Games Store

Guilty of Being

META MAN
Dec 5, 2018
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The revival of this thread got me lurking on the other forum:



This is from a verified user, so I'm not sure if they're in epic developer, someone who uses Epic's tools in development, or last of the fanboys, but I don't see how any of this benefits anyone besides Epic, when the initial goal was supposed to be Sweeney's crusade to open the PC market.

In hindsight, not unlike Musk's "Twitter has potential. I will unlock it" megalomania.



The next user explains why.



It seems like EGS is another expensive lesson for a billionaire who doesn't stay in his lane. For Sweeney, he should have just stuck to games development, rather than pick fights with sales and marketing divisions of companies like Apple, Android, and Valve.

It's incredible to me that shareholders haven't called for this man's neck yet!
It's just not sustainable. Sweeney may go down swinging, but the key is he will go down.
 
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undu

Junior Member
Mar 17, 2019
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I saw a Twitter post where someone couldn't play Elden Ring online. Really loving this multi-store future.
It's just another icon, bro!

I'm not comfortable with Epic infecting so many games.

Not sure we can do much more than raise our concerns to devs, knowing their reasons to adopt this garbage would be interesting, however. The speculation about the reasons I've read hasn't been very convincing
 

lashman

Dead & Forgotten
Sep 5, 2018
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Epic's strategy of timed exclusives helped make it an established source of videogame deals, but not without inspiring quite a bit of vitriol—some from folk with understandable grievances, but a lot of it from Steam stans. This vitriol often gets directed towards the developers who accept these deals, too, as it did when Phoenix Point (opens in new tab) studio Snapshot Games teamed up with the store. This has not, however, soured CEO and X-COM creator Julian Gollop on the strategy.

"When we did our Epic exclusive—this was the very early days of the Epic store promotion—yeah, there was a lot of hostility. And also a lot of conspiracy theories about it. The whole Chinese spyware and all the rest of it. Obviously, that's settled down a bit, and Epic has been great for many indies, in fact. It was another avenue to get funding, of course, which is very, very difficult to get with an indie studio. So overall, it was very positive for Phoenix Point itself. We had extra money that would go into making the game, which we didn't have otherwise. So it really did help the quality of the game itself, helped us get it released sooner rather than later and enabled us to put more content in so it was good."

Steam, of course, gives developers access to a vast audience, so waiting a year before releasing it on the platform still comes with some risks. "It's always better to have the widest access to storefronts as possible," Gollop acknowledges. "If you have the money to get to that finishing line, to get the game in a releasable state. But it's usually not that easy, and developers have to look for other ways to secure the funding they need."

Releasing a game on Steam doesn't mean you actually have access to all those users, either. Discoverability continues to be a big concern for everyone, in particular smaller or independent studios. Valve has attempted to alleviate this with things like the Discovery Queue and Steam Next Fest, but the amount of competition each game faces can sometimes seem insurmountable. With Epic exclusives, however, there's more of a push—a guarantee that Epic will try to put it in front of as many eyes as possible.

A staggered release also comes with some benefits. A second launch allows developers and publishers to drum up excitement all over again, and in the case of Phoenix Point it meant the new players got a better game. Over the year after its Epic launch, Snapshot Games introduced several updates, balance tweaks and other improvements.

"When we released the game initially, after the Kickstarter, we knew that we needed better tutorialisation," says Gollop. "It actually took us about a year—we did a lot of work on the game after the initial release in 2019. When it came to the Steam release in 2020, we had a much nicer, much better tutorial in place which gave a much better introduction to the story, and was well appreciated, I think, by a lot of new players."

There's an argument that developers have been using Epic launches as unofficial betas, polishing things up before the "main" launch on Steam, but it is the nature of modern game development to release post-launch fixes and updates. Few games, at least among those with teams still actively tinkering away, don't see some improvements a year after launch.

As well as the Epic deal, Snapshot Games used Kickstarter and Fig to fund Phoenix Point, which helped the studio go from 20 employees to 60 by 2020. Since then, it's been snatched up by Embracer, and it's now a division of Saber Interactive. With so much competition and a constant stream of acquisitions, I wondered if Gollop thought there was still room for studios to go it alone.

"For a more mid-size indie studio, I'd say it's probably quite difficult. Once you get to a certain size and there's a lot of money flowing out every month, long-term security becomes quite a difficult strategic question. And it's very difficult to do that, especially if you're self-publishing and relying on every next title to be a hit or at least profitable is very difficult. So it's not surprising to see companies selling to bigger entities. The advantage with Embracer, though, is it is largely a collection of still independently-run studios. It's not like a monolithic entity, like the traditional publishing model, where in the bad old days big publishers would buy up studios and try to assimilate them like some kind of Borg-like entity."

What Gollop and the team at Snapshot are working on at Embracer will need to remain a mystery for now, but they did recently release the Phoenix Point: Complete Edition (opens in new tab), which includes Steam Workshop support, putting the future of the game in the hands of its players.
 

ExistentialThought

Coffee Lover ♥☕
Feb 29, 2020
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Pretty sure Tim Sweeny lives around me. Saw a blue lambo with an EPIC license plate the other day I do not live in NC though



Holy moly, out of context cherry picking there PC Gamer. Like they even say it has been great for indies who get exclusivity deals and not much more praise than that. They even say the time leading up to a Steam launch was an opportunity for them to polish up the game for a second launch.

Plus, the whole issues folks had with Phoenix Point, that they still fail to address in the article, is that they had a fig campaign and kickstarter where they promised Steam keys and then switched this on their own backers.




But no, it was the easy to handwave away Chinese spyware stuff that people must have actually been upset about, yep definitely that and nothing else. Not their decision to switch their plans on their backers. :unamused-face:

It feels timely that after there was dialogue going around about how indies just fade away on the platform that this article comes out and still brushes away all that concern with "hey, we got an upfront payment, so that worked out for us"
 

Arc

MetaMember
Sep 19, 2020
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I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but that article's timing is highly convenient considering the Oshry tweet.

Edit: I think both Oshry and Gollop can be correct. For average games that release on EGS, there isn't much to help your game get noticed and it's easy to get lost in the shuffle. If you are lucky enough to get an exclusive contract, Epic will go out of their way to get more eyeballs looking at the game. At the same time, Epic mostly goes after bigger indies that have already had a prior hit or are from a well known developer. Those games would have probably fared just fine on Steam.
 
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ExistentialThought

Coffee Lover ♥☕
Feb 29, 2020
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I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but that article's timing is highly convenient considering the Oshry tweet.
Seriously, this section is a regular old hoot. They can actually list things Valve has done to improve discoverability, but with Epic, nothing to list, discoverability just works on Epic.

"Releasing a game on Steam doesn't mean you actually have access to all those users, either. Discoverability continues to be a big concern for everyone, in particular smaller or independent studios. Valve has attempted to alleviate this with things like the Discovery Queue and Steam Next Fest, but the amount of competition each game faces can sometimes seem insurmountable. With Epic exclusives, however, there's more of a push—a guarantee that Epic will try to put it in front of as many eyes as possible."

Do not get me wrong. Discoverability is a tough issue, but any platform where you are saying these issues do not exist or are just solved for reasons you cannot list, you are saying that the platform either has no content, the examples you are picking are situations someone has "won" the discoverability gauntlet, and/or people do not use the platform enough for the issue to become highlighted. Discoverability is an issue everywhere.
 

meschio94

Junior Member
Aug 21, 2021
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Seriously, this section is a regular old hoot. They can actually list things Valve has done to improve discoverability, but with Epic, nothing to list, discoverability just works on Epic.

"Releasing a game on Steam doesn't mean you actually have access to all those users, either. Discoverability continues to be a big concern for everyone, in particular smaller or independent studios. Valve has attempted to alleviate this with things like the Discovery Queue and Steam Next Fest, but the amount of competition each game faces can sometimes seem insurmountable. With Epic exclusives, however, there's more of a push—a guarantee that Epic will try to put it in front of as many eyes as possible."

Do not get me wrong. Discoverability is a tough issue, but any platform where you are saying these issues do not exist or are just solved for reasons you cannot list, you are saying that the platform either has no content, the examples you are picking are situations someone has "won" the discoverability gauntlet, and/or people do not use the platform enough for the issue to become highlighted. Discoverability is an issue everywhere.
you don't understand, EGS can't have discoverability issue, if people don't even know the game exist on pc
 

Ascheroth

Chilling in the Megastructure
Nov 12, 2018
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Well, F2P games can bring in the big bucks, so Epic have just taken it to the next logical step by applying the model to their entire storefront.
It does look like they haven't quite figured the monetization out though.
 

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
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C-Dub

Makoto Niijima Fan Club President
Dec 23, 2018
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www.playedthat.com
This can't be something else than another Epic sponsored PR article on PC gamer after that tweet that EGS is a blackhole for marketing. Pathetic, especially the part about "Steam stans". 🙄
I’m not one to make such accusations without evidence, but the timing and the level of research in this article (poor) is just more smoke.

Not to mention that “best place for free games” article that has seemingly come from nowhere.

That said, there are also perfectly innocent explanations for this. These journalists do trawl Twitter looking for clickbait opportunities and since people were talking about the marketing black hole thing recently, it makes sense that a few hastily-written SEO traps appear in the following days as the discussion is still relatively fresh.
 

STHX

Junior Member
Sep 20, 2021
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If the EGS deal is so good then why did EGS exclusives completely died out?
If Steam is so bad why do 95% of PC games release exclusively on Steam with no other storefront in sight?
When is Sniper Elite 5 releasing on the EGS?
 

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
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That said, there are also perfectly innocent explanations for this. These journalists do trawl Twitter looking for clickbait opportunities and since people were talking about the marketing black hole thing recently, it makes sense that a few hastily-written SEO traps appear in the following days as the discussion is still relatively fresh.
That particular journalist has a history of writing pro-EGS articles full of nonsense on PC Gamer, mostly right after negative news about EGS or great news about Steam. If Epic isn't paying him or PC Gamer for this crap, that guy must have a huge hate boner against Valve for some reason 😉



If the EGS deal is so good then why did EGS exclusives completely died out?
If Steam is so bad why do 95% of PC games release exclusively on Steam with no other storefront in sight?
When is Sniper Elite 5 releasing on the EGS?
You're forgetting the most relevant question: why was Phoenix Point borderline broken/unplayable when it released on EGS, despite the devs claiming that Epic's money would lead to a better and more polished game?
 
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C-Dub

Makoto Niijima Fan Club President
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That particular journalist has a history of writing pro-EGS articles full of nonsense on PC Gamer, mostly right after negative news about EGS or great news about Steam. If Epic isn't paying him or PC Gamer for this crap, that guy must have a huge hate boner against Valve for some reason 😉
If his pro-Epic articles in the wake of stories about Epic draw hits to his employer's website, then it's probably less about him hating Valve and more about him selling out to clicks.

I know it's easy to ascribe a lot of sinister intent to game journalists, such as being on the take and so on, but the grim reality is that even on the bigger sites their writers are just glorified clickbait authors for the SEO content grind.

I suspect that the article was posted on /r/fuckepic and thousands of people clicked it so they could leave a comment telling him how much he sucks Epic's shaft. And for the sake of Google and advertisers, that's "engagement".
 

Ge0force

Excluding exclusives
Jan 12, 2019
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I know it's easy to ascribe a lot of sinister intent to game journalists, such as being on the take and so on, but the grim reality is that even on the bigger sites their writers are just glorified clickbait authors for the SEO content grind.
This is definitely true. It's the main reason why I don't bother visiting commercial gaming sites anymore. Metacouncil helps me so much with gaming news, honest reviews and discovery! 🥰
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
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I found it funny and a bit narcassistic how the store writes "PC exclusive" or "EGS exclusive" for games currently exclusive on EGS in the front page carousel, like Goat Sim3 has "EGS exclusive", while Valve does nothing of that sort on Steam.

Imagine how corny it would be if Steam had "Steam exclusive" on Elden Ring.
 

Alexandros

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Nov 4, 2018
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I found it funny and a bit narcassistic how the store writes "PC exclusive" or "EGS exclusive" for games currently exclusive on EGS in the front page carousel, like Goat Sim3 has "EGS exclusive", while Valve does nothing of that sort on Steam.

Imagine how corny it would be if Steam had "Steam exclusive" on Elden Ring.
They should just skip the pleasantries and write "you have to buy from us, fuck you".
 

fantomena

MetaMember
Dec 17, 2018
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Just from browsing Twitter, it seems Epic finally registered in Indonesia and they're unblocked. EGS might suck, but there's no reason for Indonesian gamers who use the service to be locked out.
So they got a few days of peace from hell and now hell is open again.