During The Game Awards 2018, Epic Games revealed in a trailer the launch lineup of its new Epic Games Store. The showcase includes the presence and upcoming release of thirteen major titles on the marketplace, excluding games on the store developed by Epic, like Shadow Complex, Unreal Tournament, and Fortnite.
Epic Games' award show reveal features games from a number of veteran publishers, including the likes of THQ Nordic (Darksiders III), Annapurna Interactive (What Remains of Edith Finch), and Supergiant Games (Bastion). The Game Awards trailer comes hot off the heels of Epic Games' December 4 announcement of the store itself. The Fortnite developer is looking to deliver stiff competition to Valve's game marketplace giant Steam, promising a better deal of 88 percent of sales revenue to those who publish their games on the Epic Games Store. Epic also asserts that its marketplace is more developer-friendly, furnishing a revenue-sharing system between developers and content creators called Support-A-Creator and allowing for greater developer control over the way their games are presented and marketed.
The Epic Games Store trailer is jam-packed with exciting and never-before-seen footage of upcoming games, further solidifying the growing promotional importance of The Game Awards in the gaming industry. In two and a half minutes, Epic shows off gameplay footage of Saber Interactive's World War Z, Supergiant Games' Hades, and Coffee Stain Studios' Satisfactory (whose Steam page has been removed in anticipation of its release on the Epic Games Store), as well as an exclusive trailer of Annapurna Interactive's upcoming RPG Ashen.
As the creator and proprietor of the ubiquitous Unreal Engine and the seasoned developer of Unreal Tournament, the original Gears of War trilogy, and the runaway success of Fortnite, Epic has built a strong infrastructure beneath its feet in order to safely pivot into the lucrative digital distribution industry. Having made the recent move to using its own launcher (alongside Bethesda, Activision-Blizzard, and others), the Epic Games Store operates as a natural extension of the Epic Launcher. Epic's new store is the only place to download and play the phenomenally popular Fortnite on PC and Mac, so it almost goes without saying that there is a high chance that potential consumers will be exposed to other games on offer - especially if other titles join Satisfactory in its exclusivity.
Whether or not the Epic Games Store will coast on the massive success of Fortnite and match, or even replace, Steam as the frontrunner in the digital distribution market remains unknown for now. What's certain, though, is that Epic Games stands the chance of delivering the first real dose of healthy competition to the industry since the launch of CD Projekt's GOG distribution service. Valve has come under fire in recent years for its actions, namely in its implementation and subsequent stoppages of the Steam Greenlight and Steam Direct programs, the near-complete lack of curation of the Steam catalog (and the deluge of vaporware that this decision has unleashed), and its longtime 30 percent cut from all Steam sales revenue. Accordingly, it will be interesting to see if Epic will be able to shake up the stagnant digital distribution market, and, if so, how much.
Source: Epic Games