15 May 2020
Epic Games, the creator of massively popular game Fortnite, has announced its own PC games store called Epic Games Store. It is being projected as a direct competitor to Valve's market leader store Steam. It has announced a higher revenue sharing for game developers with the hope of attracting them to ditch Steam and come to the store.
In the announcement, Tim Sweeney, founder of Epic Games, revealed that they will be taking only 12% of the revenue made by games sold on the store. It means developers and publishers will get to keep 88% of the revenue which is way higher than the industry standard of 70%. This is exactly what Steam and Google Play Store offers to game developers and one of the reasons various devs have started to become unhappy about. While the store will support all types of games, it will be waiving off the 5% royalty fee for games developed using its own gaming engine Unreal Engine 4.
Sweeney said that their store will have no tiers and all developers will get flat 88% revenue. This is a direct point at Steam's recently released tier-based revenue sharing model. It now allows devs to keep 75% share if their game brings $10 million to $50 million in revenue. For games that can cross the $50 million mark, it will take only 20% cut. While this is definitely a slight improvement from the previous flat 30% cut, it is still something possible only for big publishers and insanely popular gaming titles
This is something Epic Games can easily relate with as this was the reason it decided to skip Steam and Google Play Store for Fortnite release on PC and Android devices. It had to go for the App Store release because Apple does not support any third-party way of downloading and installing apps on iOS devices.
Additionally, developers will get to take advantage of Epic's Support-A-Creator program where they will be able to work with popular YouTubers and Twitch game streamers. These creators will refer games to their audience to help them reach a wider audience. It said that it will be covering the first 5% of the revenue sharing of the program for a period of the first 24 months.
In the official blog post, Sweeney said,
"As developers ourselves, we wanted two things: a store with fair economics, and a direct relationship with players. And we've heard that many of you want this too! Soon we'll launch the Epic Games store, and begin a long journey to advance the cause of all developers. The store will launch with a hand-curated set of games on PC and Mac, then it will open up more broadly to other games and to Android and other open platforms throughout 2019."