Games News

Epic's CEO says gamers will soon see lower prices in their Store

Epic Games
The Epic Games Store's revenue split graph
Epic's revenue split comparison graph

Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games, has finally given an answer to the question that's been hanging in the air for a while - why aren't the games on the Epic Games Store cheaper, as this was one of the end goals of the improved profit split.

According to the official Epic Game Store offer, developers only pay 12 per cent to Epic, which also includes the 5 per cent royalties that they'd normally have to pay up, so why are we seeing prices identical to those on Steam?

"After you go through several cycles of game developers making decisions, you're going to see lower prices as developers pass on the savings to customers, realizing they can sell more copies if they have a better price", Sweeney told ArsTechnica.

He argued that revenue sharing is a business arrangement that gamers don't normally see. "As developers reinvest more of that 18 per cent of additional revenue into building better games, that's key to the long-term health of the game industry that we all have to look out for", he added.

In terms of sheer numbers, Epic's Store is actually doing better than Sweeney and Co expected. "We felt we would be lucky if games were selling at 40 to 50 per cent of the rate of Steam, just because of the small size of the user base", he said. 

Although he didn't provide the exact figures, he did mention that Subnautica, Epic's first freebie, racked up 4.5 million downloads, which included one million downloads from newcomers.

Even more interesting is the piece of statistics he shared regarding Fortnite: Battle Royale players, which is that half of them never used Steam before. This, he said, was a great opportunity to reach the customers that Valve didn't.

Epic GamesThe Epic Games Store logoEpic Games Store

Sweeney also discussed Epic's freebies, which change every two weeks, saying that they found this method much better than paying for advertising.

"We actually found it was more economical to pay developers to distribute their game free for two weeks... We can actually bring in more users at lower cost by doing all these great things for great people rather than paying Google and Facebook", he said.

You can find the full interview here.