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Found 10 results

  1. Steam has been king of the hill for more than a decade when it comes to being the number one digital distribution platform. But recently, the Valve-owned platform's dominance has been threatened by the slow withdraw of the industry's biggest AAA publishers as they moved to create their own digital platforms. Now things are about to get even more difficult for Valve as Epic Games has announced plans to create their own digital distribution platform, with an interesting twist that could disrupt the former's stranglehold on the industry. Dubbed 'The Epic Games Store', Epic's digital platform will split the revenue with developers in an 88/12 ratio, with 88% of the revenue going to the developer. This is a huge shakeup from the more traditional 70/30 model that Steam had been using, and could see developers favoring The Epic Games Store over Steam going forward. But how is this possible? In an interview with Game Informer, Epic co-founder Tim Sweeney stated that when they looked at the expenses of developing and running a digital store, they were negligible at a large-scale. Sweeney also noted that stores taking in 30% of the revenue were, in effect, marking up their costs by 300-400%, leading to an opportunity for Epic to lower that threshold so developers could take in more revenue. Also interesting to note: Epic will be waiving all fees that it would normally take in through its storefront for any developers that use the company's own Unreal Engine to develop their games, instead relying on revenue share from a small percentage of the games' profits due to the usage of Epic's engine. The store will also offer a free game every two weeks (funded by Epic themselves), perhaps taking a cue from what Humble Bundle and EA's Origin have done in the past. The Epic Games Store is slated to launch soon on PC and Mac with a number of curated titles, though the company does plan to open up the store to more titles and platforms over the course of 2019. And like Steam, it will also feature free-to-play games, support mods, and non-commercial games. Source: Gamesindustry.biz What are your thoughts on Epic launching their own digital storefront?
  2. Player Unknown's Battlegrounds (aka PUBG) has swept the competitive gaming scene this year to become what is arguably the biggest breakout hit of 2017, so naturally other developers and publishers were going to take notice of the game's design. Case in point: Epic Games announced a 'Battle Royale' mode for its game Fortnite a few days ago that would essentially use the same premise as PUBG, and the latter's developer, Bluehole, is none too pleased about it. In a press release this morning, Bluehole mentioned that "Fornite may be replicating the experience for which PUBG is known." While no legal suit has been filed yet, Bluehole appears to be amping up pressure on Epic Games to not go through with the plans for Fortnite Battle Royale. Making this a bit more complicated, PUBG was developed using Unreal Engine 4, which Epic created and owns. It's not clear what will happen; Bluehole could push for litigation, but it's currently unknown if they could really make a case for there not being another game like PUBG. After all, Bluehole's game is hardly the first time the concept has ever been used in any medium, and entire genres of games have started from one game in the past (see Minecraft and creative sandbox games or Super Mario Bros. and modern platformers). However, Fortnite Battle Royale is said to have lifted PUBG's mechanic of having a deadly blue wall that shrinks as time progresses, which could be something that Bluehole could use as a defense for their case. We'll have to wait and see what happens, but this looks to be the first major incident between Bluehole's PUBG and another major game trying to close in on its territory, and something tells me it won't be the last. Source: Waypoint
  3. Jason Clement

    Epic Releases a New Trailer for Fortnite

    Remember Fortnite? Epic Games' scavenge-by-day and fight-by-night romp was announced way back in 2011, but now it finally appears as if they're now ramping up anticipation for the game before its expected release later this year. Today, Epic released a new teaser trailer for the game and confirmed at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference that it would be released for PC and Mac, with a closed beta being scheduled for this Fall. No word on a console version at this point, but perhaps we'll hear something at E3 2015 when it kicks off in Los Angeles next week. For now, take a look at the teaser trailer below. It definitely looks as if the game is aiming heavily at creativity and fun and not a serious portrayal of the typical zombie scenario by any means. Epic co-founder Tim Sweeney had previously described Fortnite as "Minecraft meets Left4Dead," so if that sounds like it's up your alley, you can look forward to playing it later this year. Are you interested in playing Fortnite?
  4. In a surprising move today, Epic Games dropped a major bombshell of an announcement for developers in that they are now making Unreal Engine 4 available for free for everyone, including future updates. Essentially, Epic is allowing anyone to download the engine and use it for everything from game development, education, architecture, and visualization to VR, animation, and movies. When a game ships, Epic will take a 5% royalty on gross revenue after the first $3,000 per product, per quarter. This arrangement ensures that Epic only succeeds when a game does. Epic previously charged a monthly fee for the engine's use, but this new arrangement should increase their exposure quite a bit if it takes off among developers, and may pose quite a threat to competing engines like Unity and CryEngine. Source: Epic Games What are your thoughts on Unreal Engine 4 being made free to everyone?
  5. Marcus Estrada

    Unreal Engine 4 Gets Official Oculus Rift Support

    The Oculus Rift is basically a device that allows gamers to strap it to their face and then enter into an exciting 3D space. Unlike other types of 3D technology, having the screens up so close really does help amplify the effect - as long as your eyes can handle it. Technology like this could bridge the gap that the Virtual Boy had hoped to some twenty years ago. However, the only way it will manage that is if it sees a great deal of support from other companies. This step has been made much easier today thanks to an announcement from Epic Games. Epic's Unreal Engine now has integrated support for a variety of middleware companies. Although these companies include expected names such as Autodesk and Intel, Oculus VR is also listed. This means any company that licenses Unreal Engine 4 for use will now be able to implement Oculus Rift functionality into their games. They still don't have to, but with the option readily available it may prompt more developers to give it a shot. Do you want an Oculus Rift or already have one?
  6. At GDC, Epic Games' VP Mark Rein told Kotaku that they don't intend to bring Unreal Engine 4 to Wii U. Instead, Rein reiterated that Unreal Engine 3 would still be used for games on the console and that it wouldn't be made irrelevant by its successor when it debuts. "...Unreal Engine 3 is powering all kinds of amazing games, still lots of games are being made with Unreal Engine 3," Rein said. "We announced today about a new Unreal Engine 3 license. Unreal Engine 3 doesn't disappear because of Unreal Engine 4. But our goal for Unreal Engine 4 console-wise is next-gen consoles. That's really what our energies are focused on. If you want to make a Wii U game, we have Unreal Engine 3, and it's powering some of the best games on the Wii U already." For a frame of reference, Batman: Arkham City and Mass Effect 3 are two Wii U games that currently utilize Unreal Engine 3. However, Rein's comments about Unreal Engine 4 not being used on Wii U seem to conflict with an earlier comment he made to VideoGamer about the engine being able to run on Wii U "if a customer decides they want to port an Unreal Engine 4 game" to the hardware. The Epic VP also mentioned that Unreal Engine 4 would be "supremely scalable," which seems to support the evidence that the engine would be able to run on Wii U, but in a scaled down sense, so it appears that Rein is saying that Epic won't directly be supporting Wii U with their next iteration of Unreal Engine. This news comes only a few days after it was revealed from EA that Frostbite Engine 3 are not being planned for the Wii U as well (meaning that the console might miss out on the next Dragon Age and Mass Effect games, both of which are being developed with the aforementioned new Frostbite engine.) It's worth noting that the wording that both Epic and EA have used makes it sound as if Wii U support for their next gen engines is not in the cards at the moment, but could be at a future period. In the meantime, it appears that both publishers are focusing on the PS4 and next-gen Xbox as the main recipients of Unreal Engine 4 and Frostbite Engine 3. Source: Kotaku Are you surprised that Epic doesn't intend to bring Unreal Engine 4 to Wii U?
  7. Back in December, Epic Games president Mike Capps announced that he would be retiring and handing off his presidential duties due to his burgeoning family life with a new baby on the way. He mentioned that he would continue on as an advisor and a member on the Epic board of directors. So it was quite a surprise earlier tonight when Capps announced via Twitter that he was no longer affiliated with Epic in any way. Polygon reports that Capps made this statement through a Facebook update today: "When we announced that I wanted to transition out of my leadership role at Epic, the plan was for a continued but less active role, service on the board of directors, and ideally, being that eccentric semi-retired guy who still comes to playtests and gold parties. I'm sad to say that plans have changed, and as of February 11th, I'm no longer affiliated with Epic Games." He also mentions that he'll remain a member of several video game industry boards and serves as "an advocate for our art in Washington." In addition, he's considering seats on a few companies and advisory boards, as well as options for teaching at a world class university in the North Carolina triangle area. The news comes after famed developer Cliff Bleszinski left Epic Games back in October of last year. His departure also was quite a shock to the industry as he was the face of Epic to many fans, especially due to his ties with the popular Xbox 360-exclusive Gears of War franchise. Though Capps and Bleszinski have both stated their own reasons for leaving Epic Games, it remains unclear whether there is some new factor in the company that prompted them to exit or if their departure was merely a coincidence in timing. Source: Twitter, Polygon Are you surprised to hear that Mike Capps is no longer affiliated with Epic?
  8. Jason Clement

    Epic Closing Down Impossible Studios

    Many might remember that Epic Games did the impossible last year and saved a number of employees from now-defunct BigBig Games when 38 Studios went bankrupt and shuttered last year. Borrowing from the situation's namesake, Epic formed Impossible Studios out of those employees and put them to work on developing Infinity Blade: Dungeons. For a time, things looked bright for the fledgling developer, but unfortunately Epic announced the closure of the studio today in a message on their website. "It was a bold initiative and the Impossible folks made a gallant effort, but ultimately it wasn“t working out for Epic," company founder Tim Sweeney said. In the meantime, the employees will be getting 3 months' severance pay and the option for the studio to reform under the same the name and logo should they desire to do so. Game Podunk wishes the best to those affected by the shuttering of Impossible Studios.
  9. Back in May, a court case between Epic Games and Silicon Knights began. The two took issue with a breach of contract, and who exactly breached what. Silicon Knights believed they should be awarded compensation, while Epic believed Silicon Knights infringed on Epic's own Unreal Engine 3 copyrights. The court case ended swiftly with Epic winning and Silicon Knights expected to pay a little under $5 million. Unfortunately, that wasn't the end of the story. Now the post-trial ruling has increased the payment to $9 million. This doubling of fees is only the half of it though. The court ruled that Silicon Knights must also destroy their unsold games which used Unreal Engine 3, as well as code for unfinished titles. They have until December 10th to go through with this. They must also never again use Epic technology in a product. What games are impacted by this ruling? Too Human and X-Men Destiny are the finished products which must now be destroyed. Unsold copies must be recalled as well, so buy these soon if you were waiting on purchasing. As for code, three unannounced games are getting infringing code ripped out of them. These titles are The Box/Ritualyst, The Sandman, and Siren in the Malestrom. In order to be sure Silicon Knights has taken all the Epic-related features out of their engine, Epic is given access to look over all of Silicon Knight's computers and data for verification.
  10. In another surprising departure, Epic Games announced today that design director Cliff Bleszinski is leaving the renowned company, citing that he's looking to take a well deserved break from the industry. "I“ve been doing this since I was a teenager, and outside of my sabbatical last year, I have been going non-stop," Bleszinski stated. "I literally grew up in this business, as Mike likes to say. And now that I“m grown up, it“s time for a much needed break." Bleszinski has been instrumental in the development of many of Epic's games over the year, from Jazz Jackrabbit to the Gears of War series, and he leaves behind a 20 year legacy at the company. While the departure was amicable on both ends, it is currently unknown whether he plans to continue in the video game industry in some fashion after his break. His departure makes him the fifth major developer to leave a company this year, following the exit of David Jaffe from Eat Sleep Play, Peter Molyneux from Lionhead, and Doctors Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka from Bioware. Are you surprised that Cliff Bleszinski left Epic Games?
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