It’s no secret that Steam holds a huge monopoly over the online gaming marketplace. With a huge number of games available, plus sales happening at regular intervals through the year, no one can really challenge it. However, the new Epic Games game store is certainly going to try.
Steam was the first true online marketplace for video games on the PC, releasing in 2003 and mainly being an annoyance to some as every game required Steam to be installed in order to play in a similar manner to DRM. 15 years down the line, however, and now many gamers can’t imagine life without it.
While other personalized stores like Origin for Electronic Arts and UPlay for Ubisoft have popped up, they don’t have quite the same sort of visibility that Steam does, and also have a number of different business practices that annoy players that would otherwise try and make use of them.
The Epic Games game store however aims to be more developer-friendly in terms of profits. With that store, developers will get 88% of the profits that the games earn. This announcement, coincidentally, comes just after Valve announced that they would be altering their rules to favor bigger developers.
This is a massive split compared to most other store clients like Steam, Origin, and UPlay, along with other companies like Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, and others. There, the store owners normally get 30% of the revenue, rather than the 12% that Epic Games is already working with. While it’s rather ambitious, there’s no telling how this will turn out in the long run.
Epic Games has a lot of titles under its belt, such as the original group of Gears of War games (though the studio doesn’t own those games, The Coalition does), Bulletstorm, Fortnite, Unreal Tournament, and more, but we may be seeing it as a haven for indie developers and smaller companies that can’t afford to get their games put on Steam.
Either way, while we don’t know when the Epic Games game store will be going live, hopefully it will be something that many indie and small studios will be able to capitalize on.