Discussion on Epic Games new game store.

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#1 Posted by lucidique (545 posts) -

It's been announced a few days back that, due to the non-sensical success of Fortnite, the Epic Launcher would be converted into an actual game store to rival Steam, Origin or Battle.net.

A few additional tibids are starting to pop up on game news publications, such as a really cool article on the Steam Spy metrics guy working on said Epic store and Epic's general view on how the store should be presented. ( You can read that article, here : https://kotaku.com/the-guy-behind-steam-spy-has-been-working-on-epics-stor-1830890162 )

A passage in particular really blew my mind as a consumer : “That’s why we won’t have forums on Epic Games store and will start with a ticketing system, so gamers can message devs about their problems instead of review-bombing them,”

That made me wonder what was the general consensus of consumers regarding a store that is build, from the ground up, to limit our abilities to communicate insatisfactions, or immoral practices in a way that would make the developers take notice and correct the situation.

I use Steam as a primary platform because, as flawed as it may be, communication flows freely in all directions, and when a message needs to be communicated to the developers, they have no choice but to take notice, or suffer loss in revenue.

What do you guys make of all this? Are you okay with Epic going the way of Origin, or do you wish they cared more about you, the customer?

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#2 Posted by mrbojangles25 (42361 posts) -

I hate when they hype themselves/are hyped by using the term "rival".

First off, they aren't going to rival Steam. Not out of the gate. They might have a hot commodity with Fortnite and I am sure that nets them a pretty penny, but what else do they have? Epic does not really make many games these days, and they certainly have not made a great one for quite some time.

They've been turned into a cash cow by their parent company Tencent, and probably are not making their monetary goals, so they're trying this instead.

The thing about Steam, that a lot of people don't understand, is that it's been around for a long time. It makes a good amount of money, yes, but it's focused on games and gamers. Steam has a community built around it. Forums. Workshops. Guides. Reviews. All of this is lost when you take Steam out of the picture.

And the whole "we only charge developers 20% instead of 25%" is a copout, trying to appeal to our sentimentality.

*sigh*

With that said, I don't really care. I was playing WoW from it's own store/launcher (and a few other games), this won't be any different. Just wondering when we will have enough storefronts to buy things through, you know?

Or maybe someone will make a "digital mall" where one programs connects to all these stores and we don't need all these launchers.

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#3 Edited by urbangamez (3395 posts) -

competition is good, but i suspect they are doing this not because they want to help gamers but because they want to keep all of the money from their games and make money from other studios games, they have began to remove their games from steam so they don't have to pay valve anymore.

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#4 Edited by lucidique (545 posts) -

@mrbojangles25 said:

The thing about Steam, that a lot of people don't understand, is that it's been around for a long time. It makes a good amount of money, yes, but it's focused on games and gamers. Steam has a community built around it. Forums. Workshops. Guides. Reviews. All of this is lost when you take Steam out of the picture.

This is ultimately my sentiment. I have no interest in another online store for the sake of it.

At any rate, it seems Epic is introducing the concept of a rotating free game every two weeks, with Subnautica to be given away in the coming few days, with Super Meat Boy as the next give away.

They also somehow got ''Journey'' to release on PC exclusively trough them. I always tough that was a Sony gig. I guess having little exclusives like this to pepper their launch is not bad.

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#5 Posted by mrbojangles25 (42361 posts) -

@lucidique said:
@mrbojangles25 said:

The thing about Steam, that a lot of people don't understand, is that it's been around for a long time. It makes a good amount of money, yes, but it's focused on games and gamers. Steam has a community built around it. Forums. Workshops. Guides. Reviews. All of this is lost when you take Steam out of the picture.

This is ultimately my sentiment. I have no interest in another online store for the sake of it.

At any rate, it seems Epic is introducing the concept of a rotating free game every two weeks, with Subnautica to be given away in the coming few days, with Super Meat Boy as the next give away.

They also somehow got ''Journey'' to release on PC exclusively trough them. I always tough that was a Sony gig. I guess having little exclusives like this to pepper their launch is not bad.

I'm torn on the notion of exclusivity to be honest. I'm fine if a publisher wants to sell their own titles on their own store (i.e. like EA with Origin) but snatching up games so you and only you can sell them on your store seems like a dirty trick to me, and not really fair.

We will see how this plays out.

I feel compelled to give it a shot because A.) I like free stuff, and B.) I want to play Journey and Hades. But I absolutely hate being manipulated like this, especially to play games that I should be able to buy elsewhere.

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#6 Posted by lucidique (545 posts) -

@mrbojangles25 said:
@lucidique said:
@mrbojangles25 said:

The thing about Steam, that a lot of people don't understand, is that it's been around for a long time. It makes a good amount of money, yes, but it's focused on games and gamers. Steam has a community built around it. Forums. Workshops. Guides. Reviews. All of this is lost when you take Steam out of the picture.

This is ultimately my sentiment. I have no interest in another online store for the sake of it.

At any rate, it seems Epic is introducing the concept of a rotating free game every two weeks, with Subnautica to be given away in the coming few days, with Super Meat Boy as the next give away.

They also somehow got ''Journey'' to release on PC exclusively trough them. I always tough that was a Sony gig. I guess having little exclusives like this to pepper their launch is not bad.

I'm torn on the notion of exclusivity to be honest. I'm fine if a publisher wants to sell their own titles on their own store (i.e. like EA with Origin) but snatching up games so you and only you can sell them on your store seems like a dirty trick to me, and not really fair.

We will see how this plays out.

I feel compelled to give it a shot because A.) I like free stuff, and B.) I want to play Journey and Hades. But I absolutely hate being manipulated like this, especially to play games that I should be able to buy elsewhere.

I can absolutely relate. I dip everywhere a little bit, because of stuff like Battlefield, Diablo and such, but as a general rule, I prefer to make my purchases on a platform where my voice carries more weight.

For the last decade, that's been Steam.

Subnautica is a game I always have wanted to try, so they got my attention for the time being, for what it's worth ;).

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#7 Posted by mrbojangles25 (42361 posts) -

@lucidique: Enjoy Subnautica! It was the only game I played for about two weeks straight, which is saying a lot because I usually juggle two or three games at a time. It's incredibly immersive, beautiful and eery.

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#8 Posted by Gamerno6666 (6271 posts) -

Journey is coming to PC and it's epic games store exclusive.

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#9 Posted by ronvalencia (26528 posts) -

@lucidique said:

It's been announced a few days back that, due to the non-sensical success of Fortnite, the Epic Launcher would be converted into an actual game store to rival Steam, Origin or Battle.net.

A few additional tibids are starting to pop up on game news publications, such as a really cool article on the Steam Spy metrics guy working on said Epic store and Epic's general view on how the store should be presented. ( You can read that article, here : https://kotaku.com/the-guy-behind-steam-spy-has-been-working-on-epics-stor-1830890162 )

A passage in particular really blew my mind as a consumer : “That’s why we won’t have forums on Epic Games store and will start with a ticketing system, so gamers can message devs about their problems instead of review-bombing them,”

That made me wonder what was the general consensus of consumers regarding a store that is build, from the ground up, to limit our abilities to communicate insatisfactions, or immoral practices in a way that would make the developers take notice and correct the situation.

I use Steam as a primary platform because, as flawed as it may be, communication flows freely in all directions, and when a message needs to be communicated to the developers, they have no choice but to take notice, or suffer loss in revenue.

What do you guys make of all this? Are you okay with Epic going the way of Origin, or do you wish they cared more about you, the customer?

Valve built their store with Half Life's popularity.

Epic games built their store with Fortnite's 200 million registered users.

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#10 Edited by ronvalencia (26528 posts) -

@mrbojangles25 said:

I hate when they hype themselves/are hyped by using the term "rival".

First off, they aren't going to rival Steam. Not out of the gate. They might have a hot commodity with Fortnite and I am sure that nets them a pretty penny, but what else do they have? Epic does not really make many games these days, and they certainly have not made a great one for quite some time.

They've been turned into a cash cow by their parent company Tencent, and probably are not making their monetary goals, so they're trying this instead.

The thing about Steam, that a lot of people don't understand, is that it's been around for a long time. It makes a good amount of money, yes, but it's focused on games and gamers. Steam has a community built around it. Forums. Workshops. Guides. Reviews. All of this is lost when you take Steam out of the picture.

And the whole "we only charge developers 20% instead of 25%" is a copout, trying to appeal to our sentimentality.

*sigh*

With that said, I don't really care. I was playing WoW from it's own store/launcher (and a few other games), this won't be any different. Just wondering when we will have enough storefronts to buy things through, you know?

Or maybe someone will make a "digital mall" where one programs connects to all these stores and we don't need all these launchers.

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

Epic announced in October 2018 that it had acquired US$1.25 billion in investment from seven firms: KKR, ICONIQ Capital, Smash Ventures, aXiomatic, Vulcan Capital, Kleiner Perkins, and Lightspeed Venture Partners. The firms join Tencent, Disney, and Endevour as minority shareholders in Epic, which is still controlled by Sweeney.

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#11 Edited by xantufrog (10068 posts) -

I don't get the appeal except to Epic themselves. I read a thing today about a few devs pulling out of Steam to jump to this. But it seems to me there's nothing in this for US, the consumers, to get excited about. A more pro-consumer move would be to jump ship to GoG and go DRM free. Jumping to an unproven Steam rival that is actively deterring community communication isn't my idea of exciting. I agree Steam user reviews can be trash, and review bombing is ridiculous, but this isn't sitting well with me

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#12 Edited by PimpHand_Gamer (2804 posts) -

Here is the problem as I see it. I like my entire library of games to be consolidated into a single UI, under a single account with a single user name, password which means I can access every game I own under one rule. So what I have is a second account with Ubisoft Uplay that forced me to use a different user name, etc. But at least it works in Steam as does Rockstar's little store thing. EA however has my 3rd account and Blizzard would require a 4th and GOG requires a 5thnow Epic would require a 6th

That's 6 fucking accounts holding various games all segregated from each other on the same hardware platform. It just makes me rage. I don't want to install 6 peices of software or more just to play games. I don't want to remember my email, username, etc for each one every time it forgets...and it does often.

I like Steam because as an interface, it's very robust and Big Screen mode makes it act as if it's a console, everything working with just a gamepad from the comfort of my couch. With EA I have to bust out my wireless kb and swap between interfaces depending what I feel like playing next. ...I dunno, first world problems that not everyone cares a whole lot about. If you game on a desk with your kb/mouse all the time then none of that probably bothers you but imagine if you bought a PS4 and had to have entirely different store fronts and UI's like that each with their own terms of service, interaction methods, aesthetics..etc. Console gamer's wouldn't have it.

Epic's 12 % cut is great for developers and will likely attract them but they'll still sell their stuff on EA and Steam too so it won't matter much to the gamer unless they are going to have a lot of killer sales. If Epic's store get's very big, they'll start to suffer from all the exact same problems Valve has. With reviews, with cluttered store front and too many indie games and crap games..etc. That's just part of it and Epic will have to keep investing constantly. There's no way to properly sort, review and sell millions of shitty little games over the several dozen good to decent ones every year.

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#13 Edited by Starshine_M2A2 (5143 posts) -

If it’s anything like Origin, Steam can rest easy. Epic won’t have the catalogue to challenge them.

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#14 Posted by rmpumper (338 posts) -

People keep saying that competition is good, but Steam was better back when there was no competition, you know, before Origin, GOG and Uplay came along.

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#15 Posted by Howmakewood (5527 posts) -

It's quite obvious Epic isn't trying to gain share by offering a better service to the consumers, just moneyhatting developers hoping the consumers are forced to follow. Wont use it before it has as good features as Steam unless I have to.

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#16 Edited by lucidique (545 posts) -

@howmakewood said:

It's quite obvious Epic isn't trying to gain share by offering a better service to the consumers, just moneyhatting developers hoping the consumers are forced to follow. Wont use it before it has as good features as Steam unless I have to.

In the end, I, the consumer, wins, because when I feel I'm getting taken advantage of, those sweet sweet 60 bucks are staying in my wallet.

I'm going to say something that may be unpopular, but here it is : I don't care about game developers. If you can't make it at the end of the month, you need to re-evaluate your career choices.

It's a simple exchange : You make a product, I give you 60 bucks, rinse and repeat. If the game doesn't work, and you do nothing to fix it, then this is the last of my money you will ever see.

The whole review-bombing thing on Steam was great for developers, as much as they won't admit it. It made it clear they had fucked up and offered them an ultimatum : Fix your game or suffer financial losses.

A simple, recent example of a storefront with no way to communicate issues : EA made a game I bought for 60 bucks, available 11 days ahead of release to premium membership owner. They then offered 30% off to customer buying the game 11 days after release.

This is the last EA will ever see of my money. I guarantee you I am not the only one that feel like this, and because of the lack of accountability, they will never know and will never be able to rectify the issue.

And if they were ever going to, what is the incentive? They operate as a business. If there is no threat to their bottom line, then what's the point in taking action?

So, yeah. Having a sure way to listen to your customer's insatisfaction is a god send. Just remember 70% of something is better than 88% of nothing at all.

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#17 Posted by xantufrog (10068 posts) -

@rmpumper: right - also the developers are the ones in meaningful competition. They keep each other pushing towards better (or playable) games. More e-stores doesn't get us jack except more apps to install. Ok, maybe some competition on schnazziest social features or securing store exclusive sales. But all in all, I don't think this is a even remotely the same level of productive competition as comes from developers

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#18 Posted by sakaiXx (4193 posts) -

Its great. Competition means better deal. Just look at how much xbone gets discounted to compete against ps4 and switch. Same with epic store, if they want to compete they will provide unique deals to entice consumers.

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#19 Posted by rmpumper (338 posts) -

@sakaixx said:

Its great. Competition means better deal. Just look at how much xbone gets discounted to compete against ps4 and switch. Same with epic store, if they want to compete they will provide unique deals to entice consumers.

Epic won't do shit to lower the game prices as the publishers will be the ones setting them, just like on Steam. And since Epic will be taking only 12%, that means that they won't be able to offer more than 12% off the games to push sales while not making a dime themselves.

Remember when Steam always offered 75-90% deals? Yeah, those are days long gone because of all of the publisher specific competitors where they don't have to pay Steam their cut so offer the games at a lower price on their own platforms only, so we only get 50-66% off on Steam now.

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#20 Posted by sakaiXx (4193 posts) -

@rmpumper said:
@sakaixx said:

Its great. Competition means better deal. Just look at how much xbone gets discounted to compete against ps4 and switch. Same with epic store, if they want to compete they will provide unique deals to entice consumers.

Epic won't do shit to lower the game prices as the publishers will be the ones setting them, just like on Steam. And since Epic will be taking only 12%, that means that they won't be able to offer more than 12% off the games to push sales while not making a dime themselves.

Remember when Steam always offered 75-90% deals? Yeah, those are days long gone because of all of the publisher specific competitors where they don't have to pay Steam their cut so offer the games at a lower price on their own platforms only, so we only get 50-66% off on Steam now.

Give it a chance.

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#21 Posted by lucidique (545 posts) -

@xantufrog said:

I agree Steam user reviews can be trash, and review bombing is ridiculous, but this isn't sitting well with me

As crude as it may be, review bombing serves a purpose, and can be easily remedied. As a general rule, they happen when a developer has caused a monumental ****-up, be it affecting the game itself, or just generally lashing at the game's user base.

Nothing in the history of gaming has been more effective at making developers do a 180 and rectify a mistake, fix a game-breaking bug, or issue an apology over a really stupid, or politically-charged, public comment.