The company behind the breakout battle royale game, Fortnite. Epic games are now working on free cross-platform online services for video game developers and creators. This means they’ll have access to Epic games’ development tools free of charge.
Epic Games confirmed the availability of their development tools to become free to use in 2019. Here’s the snippet from their official website.
Throughout 2019, we’ll be launching a large set of cross-platform game services originally built for Fortnite, and battle-tested with 200,000,000 players across 7 platforms. These services will be free for all developers, and will be open to all engines, all platforms, and all stores. As a developer, you’re free to choose mix-and-match solutions from Epic and others as you wish.
All services will be operated in a privacy-friendly, GDPR-compliant manner.
The service launch will begin with a C SDK encapsulating our online services, together with Unreal Engine and Unity integrations. We’ll start with a core set of features and expand over time.
This is a step towards a more social connection between game players and creators between different consoles and platforms. Including but not limited to the PlayStation, Xbox, PC, and the Nintendo Switch.
Besides the community service to the social building. This is also Epic Games way of expanding their reach and practices. I mean they’ve taken the world by storm with Fortnite. One of the most accessible games in terms of both cross-platform gaming and being free to play.
Epic stated that this is their way of tightening the social connection in gaming. Something that specifically multiplayer games utilize. Its tools also include the Unreal Engine.
Will this expansion have the attraction that Epic Games intends to get? It’s not far fetched to think that it would. Though there’s a good number of factors to say otherwise as well as support it.
Such as the whole debacle of console exclusivity. While it’s important to connect players as much as possible. The console war cannot be stopped. Since both PlayStation and Xbox have to contend for their fanbases. Releasing exclusive after exclusive with titles like God of War or Halo.
Similarly, single player games on their own aren’t meant to inherently be played with other people. There’s a couple of rare scenarios like Dishonored which have global leaderboards despite being single player. But at the same time, there are others like God of War which is meant to be played on their own like a cinematic experience. As an escape from everyone else.
On the other hand, Epic Games’ free services to video game developers is a great way to attract multiplayer indie game developers. Like that Spellbreak battle royale game. Or Wild West Online. These are the type of games that would thrive on reaching as many people as they possibly can.
It’s a bit early to say anything just yet. 2019 hasn’t even begun yet but this is something to look forward to. Epic games is already busy on its titular game with the Winter Wonderland update.