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Epic CEO says only exclusives can change the '70/30 status quo'

Published: 22:21, 26 June 2019
Epic Games
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Epic Games Store

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has posted a lengthy Twitter explanation of their store's exclusives policy, insisting that even though they're not popular with everyone, they're the only way to change the '70/30 status quo' in the industry.

Sweeney was asked why Epic keep "yanking" games from Steam when they can "politely ask" for them to come to the Epic Games Store (EGS), to which he replied with a detailed explanation.

"This question gets to the core of Epic's strategy for competing with dominant storefronts. We believe exclusives are the only strategy that will change the 70/30 status quo at a large enough scale to permanently affect the whole game industry", he said.

He said that various independent stores, excluding major publishers like EA, Activision and Ubisoft, have been doing great work for years and with more features than EGS, yet they didn't even match 5 per cent of Steam's scale.

Sweeney is aware that exclusives may not be everyone's cup of tea but he's adamant that the end result is more than worth it.

"In judging whether a disruptive move like this is reasonable in gaming, I suggest considering two questions: Is the solution proportionate to the problem it addresses, and are gamers likely benefit from the end goal if it’s ultimately achieved?", he wrote.

He claims that 30 per cent store taxes often exceed developer profits, which he called "a disastrous situation for developers and publishers alike", which is why he thinks exclusives are a solution that's proportionate to the issue.

"If the Epic strategy either succeeds in building a second major storefront for PC games with an 88/12 revenue split, or even just leads other stores to significantly improve their terms, the result will be a major wave of reinvestment in game development and a lowering of costs", he wrote.

Epic Games photo showing epic games ceo tim sweeney in a gray hoodie Tim Sweeney

The added 18 per cent would be split between reinvestment, price reduction and profit, and the more games there are the better.

"So I believe this approach passes the test of ultimately benefitting gamers after game storefronts have rebalanced and developers have reinvested more of their fruits of their labor into creation rather than taxation", he added.

You can find the tweet in question .

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