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Epic Games Store changes its refund policy to match Steam's, adds local pricing (on some countries)

Oct 25, 2017
1,416
It's a guesstimate on my part based on my understanding of the costs involved.
So what are these understandings based on?

Let me turn the question around: why do you believe the break even point is higher? I think we can agree the absolute ceiling is 10% based on how low epic and discord are willing to go. Most likely several percentage points lower, since I don't think they'd be investing in challenging steam's monopoly if their end goal was merely breaking even.
You're assuming maintaining and developing Epic Store, Discord and Steam with their different associated services all have costs that result in a roughly equal break even?
 
Nov 8, 2017
2,764
It's a guesstimate on my part based on my understanding of the costs involved. Let me turn the question around: why do you believe the break even point is higher? I think we can agree the absolute ceiling is 10% based on how low epic and discord are willing to go. Most likely several percentage points lower, since I don't think they'd be investing in challenging steam's monopoly if their end goal was merely breaking even.
I'm not trying to be rude but businesses don't operate on the principle of "what's the minimum I can charge for my services and not be in the red?" If Valve only charged as little as it needed to it never could have expanded and kept adding products and services and get to the point it's at today. It's easy for someone to sit in a chair and say "oh, Valve should match the 88/12 split" without really thinking through the implications of a business being asked to voluntarily forfeit 60% of it's day to day operating income overnight. Valve does not just take all of it's profits and sit them in the bank doing nothing, they have a staff of hundreds and hundreds of people, a majority of whom are not directly working on the basic day-to-day operations of Steam. Yeah all of these people could be fired I suppose, but from Valve's perspective it's not clear why an upstart storefront throwing money around to buy off games is a good reason why they should be forced to shrink down to their most profitable core business only then run on the slimmest margins possible. Would Ubisoft abandon uPlay if they dropped to a 12% cut? Would EA abandon Origin if they did? Since those companies keep a 100% cut on their own store it's unlikely they ever would for any reason.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,000
Discord and Epic can get away with charging less because they offer significantly less services to developers than Steam, do not invest in countless FOSS projects like DXVK and SDL2, and do not invest in their own hardware R&D like Valve.
Steam does indeed invest a lot of money on expensive initiatives, and despite several big failures they've produced a lot of good things for PC gaming. But that's separate from the core cost of running an online storefront like nintendo/sony/etc do. Valve making steam machines and investing in VR does not change their break even point for running steam.
It's also not uncommon for businesses to charge unrealistically low rates to help them establish a positvion in the market.
I'm aware. But I highly, highly doubt their plan is to operate at a loss and then raise their rates, considering how central the 10% number has been to their sales pitch. They chose that figure because it's sustainable for them in the future.

I'd be happy to take a ban or avatar bet that epic and discord never raise their rates unless one of them somehow establishes a near-complete monopoly.
 
Oct 26, 2017
5,527
The nerve of Epic to improve their service in order to compete with Steam. How appalling.
It's certainly quite funny, in my opinion. Epic's original refund system was supposed to be more developer friendly, in the sense that it treated every customer as a potential scammer. Then, once they launched the store they probably realized that no one would be refunding if no one was buying, so they changed the system to be more customer friendly. It's almost as if those of us who were saying that going all in on developer requests and ignoring the customers was an extremely bad idea... were right. Fancy that.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,978
And suddenly like that, I don't mind buying on Epic store anymore. The refund was a big one (and I'm sure pricing was for others)
 
Dec 20, 2017
226
I am pleased to see they have matched Steam Policy, The only reason I use key resellers is the reduced prices on new releases but I won’t bother with them in the future as it’s not worth it as they won’t be much cheaper any more.

It will be interesting to see how it pans out in 6 months time, as PC gamers are cheap arses when it comes to paying full price for games.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,723
I am pleased to see they have matched Steam Policy, The only reason I use key resellers is the reduced prices on new releases but I won’t bother with them in the future as it’s not worth it as they won’t be much cheaper any more.

It will be interesting to see how it pans out in 6 months time, as PC gamers are cheap arses when it comes to paying full price for games.
The games on Steam's top selling list are usually nearly all full price games.

This "PC gamers are cheap" nonsense has never had any basis in reality.

Key generation is important to both users and developers. For developers it is important because it gives them a way of bypassing the 30% cut entirely as keys are free.
 
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Oct 25, 2017
2,516
It’s unreasonable to expect a brand new store to offer complete parity with Steam, a 15 year old service, on day one. The question is how fast they can build it up to be properly competitive.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,516
That’s like saying that it’s ok for the Eshop to be more barebone than Xbox Live or PSN.
That’s very different. The eShop is just another iteration of Nintendo’s attempts to build online services for over a decade. They’ve had plenty of time to get competitive and have failed. Epic is just getting started on this.
 
Oct 31, 2017
1,967
It’s unreasonable to expect a brand new store to offer complete parity with Steam, a 15 year old service, on day one. The question is how fast they can build it up to be properly competitive.
It's also unreasonable to expect for me to care, using a service I like a lot less, only to favor a company that I trust a lot less in building their "solid footing" in this market with a series of unlikable anti-competitive practices.

No, seriously. Please, tell me again: why I should even give Epic/Tencent a chance instead of letting my wallet speak for me? What does that do in my favor?
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,516
It's also unreasonable to expect for me to care, using a service I like a lot less, only to favor a company that I trust a lot less in building their "solid footing" in this market with a series of unlikable anti-competitive practices.

No, seriously. Please, tell me again: why I should even give Epic/Tencent a chance instead of letting my wallet speak for me? What does that do for me?
I never said anyone should care or should give their money to Epic if they don’t think the service is good enough at this point. But some people here seem to be mad that they’re even trying.
 
Oct 25, 2017
993
Argentina
I am pleased to see they have matched Steam Policy, The only reason I use key resellers is the reduced prices on new releases but I won’t bother with them in the future as it’s not worth it as they won’t be much cheaper any more.

It will be interesting to see how it pans out in 6 months time, as PC gamers are cheap arses when it comes to paying full price for games.
Tell us more about PC gamers
 
Jan 27, 2018
2,642
Stop the exclusivity moneyhatting and you're actually going in the right direction of what competition should be Epic.
The exclusive moneyhatting policy is a model used by every console manufacturer in the past, to tie users to their ecosystems.

I consider interesting to see a PC business model trying to imitate a console approach.

If it's successful, will they continue pushing a "console" approach, by funding exclusive developments?

Imagine a crazy situation in which they end doing its own E3 press conferences, or if you see a situation like 'Bayonetta 2' or 'Scalebound' in the past, producing a exclusivity of PlatinumGames only to be released in the Epic Store.

Imagine if they try to create a studio of the scale of Naughty Dog, only to produce PC exclusive content that can rival with the type of cinematic blockbusters published by Sony.

I can see why a lot of people don't like this model, or why a lot of people prefer an open model.

But regardless of that, a lot of times people speculated with a new big company entering the "console business" space to compete with Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft.

So I find fascinating to watch at this whole Epic Store situation, form an historical perspective.

Specially, because with the rise of Steam this generation becoming an ecosystem rivaling with these created by console manufacturers, I always asked myself what could happen if Valve decided to do more things like trying to sign and produce exclusive content from third parties, doing E3 press conferences and embracing the hype culture of a console business model.

All of that said, this will never happen, and things will never go so far.

Because at the end, it doesn't matter if we have a predominant store with an open philosophy or one moneyhatting exclusives: at the end, PC gaming will always be locked behind Windows, giving to Microsot too much power to fuck up and mess everything.
 
Oct 28, 2017
5,091
Belgium
I'm not sure what you mean by this. Don't the companies putting out the games set the price, and then Valve/Epic takes a percentage of that price?
Correct. But since Epic takes less than half what Valve takes, I would expect this to have at least a minor influence on the price. But no, still the same prices as on consoles and/or other storefronts.

But it's especially the lack of support for 3rd party keystores that causes much higher prices for Epic store exclusives.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,723
In my experience, Steam refunds are always applied within an hour or two.

Instant refunds would be neat, but I would never call them slow.
 
Oct 27, 2017
5,055
Imagine a crazy situation in which they end doing its own E3 press conferences, or if you see a situation like 'Bayonetta 2' or 'Scalebound' in the past, producing a exclusivity of PlatinumGames only to be released in the Epic Store.
That would be welcome.

But instead they’re choosing to go after games that were slated for Steam, to stifle any competition. They can’t beat Steam head to head, so they’re playing dirty.
 
Jan 27, 2018
2,642
That would be welcome.

But instead they’re choosing to go after games that were slated for Steam, to stifle any competition. They can’t beat Steam head to head, so they’re playing dirty.
It's not playing "dirty". It's once again, imitating a console business model. We have seen enough situations of this in the past. Games first confirmed as multiplatform titles in consoles, only to finally being released in a single console as timed exclusives.

If we criticize Epic for doing this, we need to also criticize to Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony. They have been doing this for decades.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,519
It's not playing "dirty". It's once again, imitating a console business model. We have seen enough situations of this in the past. Games first confirmed as multiplatform titles in consoles, only to finally being released in a single console as timed exclusives.

If we criticize Epic for doing this, we need to also criticize to Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony. They have been doing this for decades.
And I will happily and regularly do criticise all 3 of the platform holders for doing so; 1st party stuff, of course go ahead but for 3rd party stuff it's shitty.
This is new and unprecedented for the PC, and yeah it is damned scummy.

Imitating a console business model is antithesis to much of the PC ecosystem, so fuck it and fuck it hard.
 
Oct 27, 2017
5,055
It's not playing "dirty". It's once again, imitating a console business model. We have seen enough situations of this in the past. Games first confirmed as multiplatform titles in consoles, only to finally being released in a single console as timed exclusives.

If we criticize Epic for doing this, we need to also criticize to Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony. They have been doing this for decades.
And people did criticize console companies for doing this! Console users themselves hated that shit.

But funny thing is third party exclusivity has all but vanished on consoles. Exclusives are almost entirely first party releases, or titles funded by Nintendo/Microsoft/Sony.

Throwing money at a company to cancel or delay their Steam release for a year is dirty, and it’s certainly not welcome. Seems like the majority of people okay with this are console players chiming in.
 
Oct 27, 2017
925
As long as Epic is restricting consumer options by preventing third party games from appearing on competitors' platforms, they can get bent.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,347
Every day. Its going to be like this every day isnt it? Every day there is going to be some news about Epic and people are going to lose their minds. im just thankful i made it alive to this day.
 
Oct 27, 2017
204
Is there any other product or service where people try to compare a launching product to the old model (by 5 years minimum) of the competition? Epic isn't a small indie team trying some interesting idea in a field dominated by big companies. The could have made all these upgrades *before* starting their aggressive approach. Also by buying exclusives they are forcing the direct comparisons right now.

It is really good that their are implementing these consumer friendly features, but like everything else about this store, it feels rushed. Good refund policy but still only available by going through manual support. Regional pricing but without local currency (at least here in Brazil) or local payment options. It all feels so reactive instead of planned.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,633
Is there any other product or service where people try to compare a launching product to the old model (by 5 years minimum) of the competition? Epic isn't a small indie team trying some interesting idea in a field dominated by big companies. The could have made all these upgrades *before* starting their aggressive approach. Also by buying exclusives they are forcing the direct comparisons right now.

It is really good that their are implementing these consumer friendly features, but like everything else about this store, it feels rushed. Good refund policy but still only available by going through manual support. Regional pricing but without local currency (at least here in Brazil) or local payment options. It all feels so reactive instead of planned.
After early acess games we’re currently experiencing early access storefront it seems.

Money now, features later.
 
Jan 27, 2018
2,642
Throwing money at a company to cancel or delay their Steam release for a year is dirty, and it’s certainly not welcome. Seems like the majority of people okay with this are console players chiming in.
I have a Steam library with more than 1,000 titles, most of them bought at full price.

And I have zero interest in opening an account in the Epic Store, by the way.

I wasn't defending none of the companies.

Indeed, I'm more an itch.io person :)
 
Oct 27, 2017
601
Cool

Let’s hope they implement support forums, reviews and there are actually sales events like during summer and winter lol
Great start with regional price (very important for me in Brazil).
But indeed, forums and user reviews are an incredible feature for troubleshooting and real world impressions of the PC port or the game itself.