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One Studio Would Have Earned +$350k If Its Game Could Have Launched on Epic - MMORPG.com News

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  • SBFordSBFord Former Associate EditorMember LegendaryPosts: 33,126
    edited December 2018
    I simply interpreted much of what he said as being written to illustrate what a huge difference 12% of sales and 30% of sales is and what a massive difference the extra cash can make to small and indie studios. Perhaps that's too simplistic, but putting abstract numbers to it in a theoretical way was enlightening to me.
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  • HashbrickHashbrick Member RarePosts: 1,851
    SBFord said:
    I simply interpreted much of what he said as being written to illustrate what a huge difference 12% of sales and 30% of sales is and what a massive difference the extra cash can make to small and indie studios. Perhaps that's too simplistic, but putting abstract numbers to it in a theoretical way was enlightening to me.

    *shrugs* Guess I'm just not erudite enough to see the "big picture".
    They could have explained it better and they are dreaming of greener pastures.  They are trying to get this out so Steam will lower their percentage.  They don't want to move to Epic (much much less crowd) they just want Steam to sweat to change.  However we know how valve operate they don't make wild swing decisions, nothing will come out of this "shit posting" by them.  Epic is trying to be competition, they have to be wildly different or no one will take the plunge.  The developers that are exclusivily selling on Epic Store are going to lose sales that's just a straight fact.  They are going in with a big statement saying I can go elsewhere Steam, but in reality they are failing themselves with emotions.  Business has no place for emotions.
    SBFord
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  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 28,954
    Torval said:
    Sovrath said:
    Daranar said:
    SBFord said:
    That's a significant chunk of change...
    They may have earned $350k more on EPIC (with wild false assumptions) but they also would have earned millions less without Steam, if they had to physically ship and buy shelf space.
    Ultimately, and I think the actual point, is that they are saying if they sold the same amount on this new platform that they did on Steam they would have made 350k more. And that is a significant bit to small studios.

    Whether or not this new platform actually takes off so that they can sell millions (or however many copies) remains to be seen for any game that is sold there.


    Right but that's where the huge fallacy comes in, they're implying that would have happened with no proof it would have worked that way. It's easy to make a premise that doing "something" would have equated to greater success, but in doing so they're asking you to accept a big pile of wild assumptions and conditions for that premise to be true.

    There are so many factors unaccounted for that the statement is ridiculous and simply meant to trigger an emotional tribal response in the user (gamers). They're pitching themselves as victims of the system while promoting something that appears friendlier to developers.

    Has anyone gone to the Steam store page and read the comments from disgruntled kickstarter backers and other players? It's a multiplayer game and no one wants to play it. Maybe the fault isn't with Steam. Valve has a pretty generous refund policy, maybe this team would have made that $350K on the backs of gamers who wanted a refund?

    There is always more to the story than can be delivered in a news bite.
    I don't think it's as earnest as that. Or is it?

    They are just pointing out how much money a studio can retain, using their sales numbers, when a studio gets more of the cut.

    Not that they would have sold that many on this other platform. Just that, given a certain set of sales numbers, the amount of money a studio can keep is sizable.
    SBFordPanther2103
  • BruceYeeBruceYee Member EpicPosts: 2,029
    18% more fee should be viewed by the developer as part of what it takes to provide security and convenience of having most games in one place for their customers.

    Games added to Steam always have the chance to hit(relatively) for small developers and gain huge sales in a short period of time.

    DayZ when it was just a mod for Arma 2 sold one million copies of that game in just little over a weekend.

    More recently  Slay the Spire has sold a stupid amount of copies also in a very short amount of time.

    Epic is overreaching with this IMO.

    What happens when another launcher comes out that charges only 8% or 6%, maybe Twitch? Epic will be the fools for dropping the fee so low.
  • phoenixfire2phoenixfire2 Member UncommonPosts: 185
    I'm fine with abandoning Steam or keeping my Steam library at its current size if it means devs can get more money for their products instead of it going to the storefront.  Ideally that money would be used to deliver better game updates or future titles.
    SBFordDaranar
  • SovrathSovrath Member LegendaryPosts: 28,954
    I'm fine with abandoning Steam or keeping my Steam library at its current size if it means devs can get more money for their products instead of it going to the storefront.  Ideally that money would be used to deliver better game updates or future titles.
    Ideally.

    But larger companies, companies that want to get as much profit as possible *"but Sovrath, all companies want to get as much profit as possible"* -

    True, but large publicly traded companies will do whatever it takes to maximize profits, so I can see them moving their games to this platform if they think they will make more money.
    Daranar
  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,505
    Sovrath said:
    I'm fine with abandoning Steam or keeping my Steam library at its current size if it means devs can get more money for their products instead of it going to the storefront.  Ideally that money would be used to deliver better game updates or future titles.
    Ideally.

    But larger companies, companies that want to get as much profit as possible *"but Sovrath, all companies want to get as much profit as possible"* -

    True, but large publicly traded companies will do whatever it takes to maximize profits, so I can see them moving their games to this platform if they think they will make more money.
    The crux of the issue for me rests with the reports I've seen with how terrible Valve is at actually providing support to devs on their storefront.  By the accounts I've read, they're not very good, and that's putting it politely.

    If Epic provides better developer support and pulls devs from Steam because they offer a better service to devs, Valve can kick rocks imo.  I'll download Epic's launcher and enjoy the games devs took with then when they left Steam.

    Valve needs competition.  They currently manage the storefront like they're the USPS of digital storefronts.

    image
  • GinazGinaz Member RarePosts: 2,239
    SBFord said:
    Better 30% selling millions than 12% for hundreds...players don't want another launcher.
    Players didn't want an all-in-one digital launcher a decade ago either. They wanted to keep buying physical discs. 

    Life evolves. Games -- even game launchers -- follow suit.
    And when developers had to sell their games as physical copies in brick and mortar stores, they were losing significantly more than the 30% that Steam gets from them.  I don't mind devs keeping more of the money their games generate, and Steam might be wise to lower that percentage, but good games will still make money while shit games won't.  Judging by the user scores, I'd say Battalion 1944 falls into the latter category.

    Is a man not entitled to the herp of his derp?

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  • phoenixfire2phoenixfire2 Member UncommonPosts: 185
    Sovrath said:
    I'm fine with abandoning Steam or keeping my Steam library at its current size if it means devs can get more money for their products instead of it going to the storefront.  Ideally that money would be used to deliver better game updates or future titles.
    Ideally.

    But larger companies, companies that want to get as much profit as possible *"but Sovrath, all companies want to get as much profit as possible"* -

    True, but large publicly traded companies will do whatever it takes to maximize profits, so I can see them moving their games to this platform if they think they will make more money.
    Yep and I'm fine with them making those profits.  Especially when they're made by cutting out some of the middle-man's take.  Throwing money at a game is almost necessary for it to become a popular title, so the more they have to throw the better the chances.  Of course throwing money at a game in no way guarantees a good/popular game, but it does facilitate the process in many ways.  There are outliers to be sure, how much did it cost to develop Minecraft and how much $ has it made?  A lot of titles demand Avatar-like budgets to deliver high production values though, them's just the facts. 

    More money going to the devs and those funding the projects is a win in my opinion, because at least some of it is likely to find its way back into perhaps the sequel to the game you just bought (we'll assume you love the game); whereas if that money just went to the storefront there's zero chance of it enhancing your gaming experience.
    Sovrath
  • timeraidertimeraider Member UncommonPosts: 837
    Just annoying their refunding goes terrible, no reviews or comments on games.. And again, while alot of people use Steam.. Its also due to third-party steamkeys being alot cheaper.
    Epic doesnt need to compete with the full steamprices, they need to compete with the prices of other parties selling steamgames. And they cant really do that with their prices.
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  • DaranarDaranar Member UncommonPosts: 386
    SBFord said:
    I simply interpreted much of what he said as being written to illustrate what a huge difference 12% of sales and 30% of sales is and what a massive difference the extra cash can make to small and indie studios. Perhaps that's too simplistic, but putting abstract numbers to it in a theoretical way was enlightening to me.
    It was too simplistic.  You can sell something at a farmers market with a 95% margin.  You could also get a national distribution deal with Walmart at a 50% margin.  Guess which one you are going to make more money with.   Not the higher margin option...

    It would be silly to say, man if I sold my products on Bonanza instead of Amazon, I would have made way more money.  No, you would have moved significantly less product.

    That's most people's point here.  You make more money with the higher fees because of the increased exposure.  

    And don't forget, from the publishers side, as you obtain more customers your expenses also rise.  When you become the market share leader you also have more power.   If EPIC can dethrone Steam (which it would take operating a loss on the platform to earn market share) I'd bet you large sums of cash that they will then increase their fees. ;)
    Torval

    If I want a world in which people can purchase success and power with cash, I'll play Real Life. Keep Virtual Worlds Virtual!


  • LokeroLokero Member RarePosts: 1,514
    I think Epic has the money and influence and capability to provide a platform as good as Steam, without a doubt...  And, frankly Steam's overall quality has gone significantly downhill, in some ways.

    But, I think Epic jumped the gun here and got ahead of themselves.  They should have waited until they had their actual platform and storefront fully prepared and ready to go.
    If they really aren't going to have the majority of features in until late 2019, that's hardly going to do them any favors.

    The whole thing is currently in a preview state.  Hopefully, the fact that they have a ton of current players and some exclusives will keep the momentum from sputtering.
    SBFordTorvalTacticalZombeh
  • Gobstopper3DGobstopper3D Member RarePosts: 879
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    Daranar

    I'm not an IT Specialist, Game Developer, or Clairvoyant in real life, but like others on here, I play one on the internet.

  • ChildoftheShadowsChildoftheShadows Member EpicPosts: 1,941
    BruceYee said:
    18% more fee should be viewed by the developer as part of what it takes to provide security and convenience of having most games in one place for their customers.

    Games added to Steam always have the chance to hit(relatively) for small developers and gain huge sales in a short period of time.

    DayZ when it was just a mod for Arma 2 sold one million copies of that game in just little over a weekend.

    More recently  Slay the Spire has sold a stupid amount of copies also in a very short amount of time.

    Epic is overreaching with this IMO.

    What happens when another launcher comes out that charges only 8% or 6%, maybe Twitch? Epic will be the fools for dropping the fee so low.
    For a small team trying to make it that 18% could mean the difference between creating content and creating cash shop items to cover costs. You have to remember, steam is only one of the costs a company has to account for. Developers, artists, servers, storage, taxes and related fees (off the top of my head) and they're expected to cover that gracefully with only 70% off their income? Ever heard "nickel and dime you to death"? Well 30% is a hefty chunk. 
    SBFordgervaise1
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  • ChildoftheShadowsChildoftheShadows Member EpicPosts: 1,941
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    You'll go where the game's are. Time will tell.
    "Wake up, It's RNG, there is no such thing as 'rare'"
    - Ungood
  • esc-joconnoresc-joconnor Member RarePosts: 1,097
    SBFord said:
    That's a significant chunk of change...
    That's a big if. So I guess if I made a launcher/store and only charged 5%, they could have made even more money! Except, no one would use my launcher/store.

    Shoulda coulda woulda, but ya didn't. 

    Even if the platform starts getting attractive, what will Steam do? Lower it's prices. It might end up being good for gamers if the prices come down, but it's hard to say. 
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,370
    I find this whole "but players won't accept another launcher" argument absolutely bizarre.  I generally assume that whenever I pick up a new game, I'm going to make a new taskbar shortcut for it.  If anything, I get annoyed when I can't do that and have to go through extra hops to launch the game.  If I can readily launch the game by clicking on a shortcut, why should I care what launcher it is routed through?
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  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 20,295
    edited December 2018
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    You'll go where the game's are. Time will tell.
    No, I'll go to the platform that works for me and spend my money there or I won't buy the game. I don't own FO76 for more reasons than Bethesda is sketchy.

    BruceYee said:
    18% more fee should be viewed by the developer as part of what it takes to provide security and convenience of having most games in one place for their customers.

    Games added to Steam always have the chance to hit(relatively) for small developers and gain huge sales in a short period of time.

    DayZ when it was just a mod for Arma 2 sold one million copies of that game in just little over a weekend.

    More recently  Slay the Spire has sold a stupid amount of copies also in a very short amount of time.

    Epic is overreaching with this IMO.

    What happens when another launcher comes out that charges only 8% or 6%, maybe Twitch? Epic will be the fools for dropping the fee so low.
    For a small team trying to make it that 18% could mean the difference between creating content and creating cash shop items to cover costs. You have to remember, steam is only one of the costs a company has to account for. Developers, artists, servers, storage, taxes and related fees (off the top of my head) and they're expected to cover that gracefully with only 70% off their income? Ever heard "nickel and dime you to death"? Well 30% is a hefty chunk. 
    Daranor explained things above from the perspective of a business major rather well. 18% in a vacuum means nothing. 18% in context means everything and your position lacks any context. Making 18% more from a pool of a small pool nets you less than 18% less from a massive pool.

    There are two basic ways to make money on product, volume or markup. If you lower volume while reducing markup then you'll make less money. Of course if the high volume market charged you less then you'd make more, but high volume markets don't do that. That is why there isn't a cheaper options. Epic is banking on their popular with Fortnite to draw consumers and it may or may not work, but right now fanciful revenue claims don't mean anything until that happens.

    Then there is the engine situation to consider. Will Epic treat all of its customers equally for revenue fees or will their engine licensees get a better deal?

    Then there is the consumer angle to consider. A few indignant gamers fantasizing about affecting industry change might support Epic, but customers familiar with Valve's return policy and sales will stay where they're at unless Epic gives them a reason to move. Free games are sweet, but they don't make you move just ask Twitch Prime.
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  • gervaise1gervaise1 Member EpicPosts: 6,919
    edited December 2018
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    Charging 30% rather than 12% is more consumer friendly? Seriously?  
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 20,295
    gervaise1 said:
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    Charging 30% rather than 12% is more consumer friendly? Seriously?  
    Is the consumer going to see that 18% drop? Are games on Epic's platform going to be 18% cheaper? Then who cares?
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  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,370
    edited December 2018
    What stops developers from simply offering their games for sale on both?  If they get 20% of their sales through Epic's site and 80% through Steam, then they get to keep more than 5% more revenue than if they got the same number of total sales through Steam alone.  That seems like it would pay for any added costs of offering the game on both sites.
    Sovrath
  • ChildoftheShadowsChildoftheShadows Member EpicPosts: 1,941
    Quizzical said:
    What stops developers from simply offering their games for sale on both?  If they get 20% of their sales through Epic's site and 80% through Steam, then they get to keep more than 5% more revenue than if they got the same number of total sales through Steam alone.  That seems like it would pay for any added costs of offering the game on both sites.
    Be silly not to honestly. Unless there's some kind of exclusivity clause somewhere. I usually buy directly from the developer when I get the chance because I know how things are.
    Sovrath
    "Wake up, It's RNG, there is no such thing as 'rare'"
    - Ungood
  • DaranarDaranar Member UncommonPosts: 386
    gervaise1 said:
    As someone else mentioned earlier, it appears that Epic is more dev friendly than steam, but steam is a bit more consumer friendly.  As a consumer, I know where I'm going...
    Charging 30% rather than 12% is more consumer friendly? Seriously?  
    It's not more consumer friendly.  It's not less consumer friendly.  I think he is saying Steam is more consumer friendly for other reasons.  

    And actually one can argue with higher fees you CAN be more consumer friendly because you have more resources.  I'm a big Amazon fan.  They are MORE than fair to me as a consumer.  They can do that because of their high fees to sellers.  Which is how they do such high volume, because consumers don't go to platforms that treat sellers the best, they go to the platforms that treat consumers the best.  And often (not always) the platforms that treat consumers the best are the ones that make the sellers pay for it.

    I think you may not be understanding that there is virtually no benefit to the consumer in the difference in fees.   I know someone earlier mentioned that with lower fees the devs could give a better product.

    If we assume that sales numbers are the same and a dev genuinely makes more $$ with lower fees.  There won't be much of a noticeable difference to the consumer.  Someone above also mentioned how public game companies are horrible and all about their shareholders.   Everyone forgets that private companies also have investors to please.  If you are producing a quality game, you have artists, programmers, social media folks and management to pay...before the product was released.  That money comes from somewhere.  That somewhere is called an investor.  Even if it's a loan or a rich developers trust fund (he still wants that money back).  So when you make more money, most of it is going to go back to investors before it gets invested back into the product.  

    The game industry is comprised of products with short shelf life.  Financially there is a lower ROI for DLCs and such, especially for indie games that we are talking about.  Why?  Because gamers jump from game to game.  That's what happens in any flooded content based market.  So it's easy to argue that the extra $350k would not go to the consumer even through reinvesting in the game.  The best argument is that those profits could be seen by the consumer in the next game by that developer.  But it's all a stretch.

    Game developers, as artistic as some may be, are not non-profits.  They are for profit businesses.  Extra profit they make doesn't just automatically get reinvested into the company/game.  Only a small portion.
    Torval

    If I want a world in which people can purchase success and power with cash, I'll play Real Life. Keep Virtual Worlds Virtual!


  • DaranarDaranar Member UncommonPosts: 386
    Quizzical said:
    What stops developers from simply offering their games for sale on both?  If they get 20% of their sales through Epic's site and 80% through Steam, then they get to keep more than 5% more revenue than if they got the same number of total sales through Steam alone.  That seems like it would pay for any added costs of offering the game on both sites.
    Now you get it.  That's how it works in reality.   They may make 5% more, not 18%.  Pretty sure the math works to less than 5% increased revenue in your scenario, but I don't feel like doing it myself, lol.   Though the more platforms you sell on the more customer service flows you need to handle and your costs rise a little as well. 

    So now we understand this initial scenario is completely bogus.  Yes devs may get a slight boost to revenue with EPIC's launcher IN ADDITION but it sure as hell ain't no 18% and it sure as hell isn't going to impact the players.  
    Torval

    If I want a world in which people can purchase success and power with cash, I'll play Real Life. Keep Virtual Worlds Virtual!


  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,657
    I always found 30% to be way too much for a digital store service. What is the more reasoble number I will not take guess at, but I would welcome a much simpler solution for a cut in those expenses. 
    Lets not forget that better games can be made if the developers that cut went down..significantly better games.
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