Games Industry

Epic Games will continue to produce exclusives in EGS, but the situation with Metro Exodus “will never happen again”

The company will no longer pull games out of Steam at the last moment.

Each loud exclusive of Epic Games Store becomes a reason, if not for scandals, then at least for heated discussions. But the most problematic for the announcement of Epic still remains a deal with Deep Silver on the Metro Exodus – to delete the game from Steam until 2020, announced just two weeks before its release.

According to Steve Ellison, head of the Epic Games Store, this was a mistake that will not happen again. Epic no longer intends to pick up games at this late stage.

We have been negotiating with [the publisher of Metro Exodus] for months, and they made some decisions on their side. We do not shift the responsibility to someone else, it’s just timing that happened, because [late] important agreements were reached for their business.

We decided to go through it all together. We knew that we would potentially have communication problems. It seems to me that the situation felt much worse and larger than we expected, and while it all happened, we began to say: “We will never do that again.”

Steve allison Epic Games Store Head

Since then, Epic Games really did not pick up games from Steam with an already open pre-order, although the situation with Phoenix Point was still tense – it was financed through Kickstarter, and the backers were unhappy with the developer’s decision.

Allison stressed that in the near future, Epic Games plans to enter into new exclusive deals – until the balance in the industry changes.

We will [enter into exclusive agreements] for quite some time. Here we are talking about promoting our business model and helping developers thrive. But at some point, the industry will take a step forward, and our 12% service charge will become the standard. At some stage, we will have either zero exclusives, or very, very few. We obviously will not do this on the same scale as now.

Steve allison Epic Games Store Head

When Ellison was asked if the deal with Tencent had anything to do with stopping the development of the Unreal Tournament, the head of EGS rejected this assumption.

Tencent has zero influence on our business. They do not speak with us. They offer nothing. Everything we create is done by our team. Final decisions are made by Tim Sweeney, and he does not submit to Tencent.

Tencent has invested considerable money in us, but they do not manage our business. In fact, we are competitors – they promote PUBG.

Steve allison Epic Games Store Head

When Ellison was asked if Epic would create Epic Spy, an analogue of Steam Spy, he replied that the company itself could not. Nevertheless, the director of the publishing strategy of Epic Games and the creator of Steam Spy Sergey Galyonkin said that the company will try to give developers as much information as possible.

Galenkin at GDC confirmed the plans of developers in the next three months to update the store’s design, improve the management of the DLC, add installation management and reduce patch sizes. Later, EGS will receive user reviews, which developers can disable at will, as well as a customer loyalty program – something like Steam cards, but with a different implementation

The company has previously published all the upcoming EGS updates in open form through the Trello service. Progress can be monitored in near real time.

Despite the scandal, Metro Exodus is sold with EGS 2.5 times better than Last Light on Steam. Epic told about this during her press conference at GDC

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