• Introducing Image Options for ResetEra 2.0! Check the left side navigation bar to show or hide images, avatars, covers, and embedded media. More details at the link.
  • Community Spotlight sign-ups are open once again for both Gaming and EtcetEra Hangout threads! If you want to shine a spotlight on your community, please register now.

PC Gaming ERA | May 2019 - Romance of the Three Storefronts

Oct 26, 2017
1,548
France
Epic gives the dev what they would be getting for a full purchase of the first X copies to get the game in the store. As they give them the money they would get in the store, they give them the 88%. The dev will not get any extra money until those "bought" copies are sold in the store (but as it is an upfront payment, it is more valuable for the dev).

During the sale, Epic pays for the 10$ cut, so they still give the devs the same money as they would in the original price. (So in a game that is originally 20$, they give the devs 17.6$ even when the user only paid 10$). In case that it is a game that hasnt sold the expected amount, it just means one less game in the tab.
I agree, except that I am not sure whether the payment is upfront, and whether there is a constraint on the number of sold games.
It seems that it is a contract which only takes effect to guarantee revenue during the exclusivity period, which would hint that:
- this contractual payment would happen at the end of the exclusivity period,
- even if the number of sales is not reached, the tab is cleared after the payment happens.

If we consider Phoenix Point, the price of the game is 32.99€, and the revenue guarantee could be about 2 million euros.
So, if we forget the EPIC MEGA SALE, then Epic would make a profit if there are at least about 61,000 sales.
However, Epic does not make more money by offering 10€ to each customer, and does not lose less money either.
I guess there is something which I am missing.

Let suposse that Epic guarantee 100 sales at U$S 20 and the game doesn´t sell anything, Epic loose U$S 2.000.
Now they give a U$S 10 discount and sells 50 copies, they loose U$S 1.500 (10x50 + 20x50).
Sorry for my english, I can read it well but no so much writing.
In this case, my understanding is that Epic would guarantee $2000 to the dev.

If nothing is sold, Epic loses $2000.

If 50 copies are sold with $10 given back to the customer, Epic loses $1500 instead of $1000.

It must be that it is not a revenue guarantee but Epic actually bought game copies, as you suggested. Otherwise, the $10 cashback increases the loss of Epic.
 
Last edited:
Oct 25, 2017
2,857
I agree, except that I am not sure whether the payment is upfront, and whether there is a constraint on the number of sold games.
It seems that it is a contract which only takes effect to guarantee revenue during the exclusivity period, which would hint that:
- this contractual payment would happen at the end of the exclusivity period,
- even if the number of sales is not reached, the tab is cleared after the payment happens.

If we consider Phoenix Point, the price of the game is 32.99€, and the revenue guarantee could be about 2 million euros.


So, if we forget the EPIC MEGA SALE, then Epic would make a profit if there are at least about 61,000 sales.


However, Epic does not make more money by offering 10€ to each customer, and does not lose less money either.


I guess there is something which I am missing.



In this case, my understanding is that Epic would guarantee $2000 to the dev.

If nothing is sold, Epic loses $2000.



If 50 copies are sold with $10 given back to the customer, Epic loses $1500 instead of $1000.
Ah, I got what you mean.
However there are two big things that I think you are wrong with:
  • Contractual payment should happen at the START of the exlusivity period. Otherwise companies would be stupid to accept the deal, as the most interesting part of all of this is the upfront payment. Getting paid the possible loses after 1 year is just not good enough (and as we saw with Phoenix and Rune, they got financing before the game went to sale, in the first case enough to repay ALL the backers and in the other to avoid EA).
  • The tab is not cleared after a period of time, but stays until the game crosses the revenue barrier. For the dev, this isnt that important, as they get the payment before hand but Epic should ideally always end up being revenue neutral with the deal given infinite time.
So really, in the end their payment is something that idealy with infinite time, will always be crossed by epic (just with a TON of opportunity costs), while doing a 10$ discount actually creates loses but reduces the oportunity costs as they are just "repaying a debt" to themselves (and creates positive flow to their store which is the main objective).

My idea of the contract is:
The devs get paid the equivalent of 200k sold copies of the game in day 0 and until they sell 200.001 copies, they dont get more money from Epic. Otherwise it wouldnt make sense to make an agreement that covers for loses... after you had the loses. You want to cover for them BEFORE they can happen. The main positive of this deal is that regardless of reviews, customers or anything, you as a dev get paid now.
 
Last edited:
Oct 25, 2017
13,734
Trying to install Sea of Thieves via windows store.

Every time i click install it comes up with "Can't install will retry later"

Any ideas? This store has always been horrible to use for me...
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,548
France
However there are two big things that I think you are wrong with:
  • Contractual payment should happen at the START of the exlusivity period. Otherwise companies would be stupid to accept the deal, as the most interesting part of all of this is the upfront payment.
  • The tab is not cleared after a period of time, but stays until the game crosses the revenue barrier.
So really, in the end their payment is something that idealy with infinite time, will always be crossed by epic (just with a TON of opportunity costs), while doing a 10$ discount actually creates loses but reduces the oportunity costs (and creates positive flow to their store which is the main objective)

Interesting. That means Epic actually bought game copies, which are then sold in priority on their store, hence the absolute requirement of an exclusivity window.

Could it be that a HYPER MEGA EPIC SALE could take place when the timed-exclusivity window is about to end?

and as we saw with Phoenix and Rune, they got financing before the game went to sale, in the first case enough to repay ALL the backers and in the other to avoid EA
I was considering that under another contract, as hinted at by Madjoki's post.

These exclusives don’t come to stores for free; they’re a result of some combination of:
  • marketing commitments,
  • development funding,
  • or revenue guarantees.
This all helps developers.
Otherwise it wouldnt make sense to make an agreement that covers for loses... after you had the loses.
It would be an insurance. For instance, Epic would offer development funding in exchange of the exclusivity ; the dev would be afraid of losing sales due to the exclusivity ; Epic would try to convince the dev that many copies would be sold on the Epic store, and to show their confidence, offer an insurance that the dev would earn the same revenue as he would have earned on Steam.
 
Last edited:
Oct 25, 2017
2,857
Interesting. That means Epic actually bought game copies, which are then sold in priority on their store, hence the requirement of an exclusivity window.

Could it be that a HYPER MEGA EPIC SALE could take place when the timed-exclusivity window is about to end?
Not really, their exclusivity window is 1 year for all games (and 6 months for Borderlands).
The main reasons from the sale imho are:
  • People havent really used the store even players from Fortnite. Example: They got only 5 million downloads of the first game they send email to all fortnite players / people with EGS account (and normally that tends to drop down as more people put that mail into spam).
  • Need to drum up numbers for the publisers. Some of the numbers from people that jumped in might be... not good if we read into the THQN meeting. They might want to show that they are a serious contender in the marketplace to continue getting exclusives at a decent price (as the brand damage cost has potentially increased).
  • Drum up excitement for the E3 conference. Lets be serious, the PCGamer E3 is always a laughing stock that only hardcore PC gamers watch... and that audience is the one more pissed out with EGS. They need to attract more people / press.
  • Try and change the opinion of pc gamers by actually using a carrot instead of a stick.
  • Fight against Steam Summer Sales by doing a Sale that outshines them. We will probably see lots of articles about how Steam Summer Sale was a dissapointment compared to how crazy EGS one was.
These are just guesses. As you can see most of them seem as if they are in uneven terrain. That is my opinion seeing the crazy discount they have made (and how seemingly out of nowhere it came, as even days before the sale, it seemed that it would be completely different with a 10$ discount coming for 2 step verification and promotion in Fortnite). However, I am biased so it could also be another reason.

Also talking about Fortnite, I am surprised about the lack of cross-promotion around both "brands", but I guess the answer to the promotional tweets being mostly focused on Fortnite worries them (such as a lashback to an EGS sale were they give 10$ credit to EGS games by promoting in Fortnite... but not adding V-Bucks).

Edit: I still think that "revenue guarantees" should happen at the start of the exclusivity period. It makes no sense to sign a deal where the developer is the one shouldering the possibility of the game severely underperforming for 1 year to get the payment. The main driving force for the devs to sign the agreement would be that they get the money upfront and they do not have to care about anything else (well, they do care about making a good game for fans somewhat, but not having to worry about the sales).
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,363
Edit: I still think that "revenue guarantees" should happen at the start of the exclusivity period. It makes no sense to sign a deal where the developer is the one shouldering the possibility of the game severely underperforming for 1 year to get the payment. The main driving force for the devs to sign the agreement would be that they get the money upfront and they do not have to care about anything else (well, they do care about making a good game for fans somewhat, but not having to worry about the sales).
It takes two to tango though, and for EGS the exact reverse is true - they would probably like an option to pay later. I wouldn't be surprised if they met somewhere in the middle and EGS guaranteed particular payouts for various subintervals.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,857
It takes two to tango though, and for EGS the exact reverse is true - they would probably like an option to pay later. I wouldn't be surprised if they met somewhere in the middle and EGS guaranteed particular payouts for various subintervals.
In gaming, most of the revenue is still quite frontloaded so most of the revenue should be in the first months. We are also talking about amounts of money that are rounding errors right now for Epic as they can easily shoulder them with the Fortnite cash cow.

I just think that in most cases, the main payment would be at launch
 
Oct 26, 2017
373
I'm still surprised they didn't do EGS-exclusive cross-promotional content in Fortnite, like owners of Hades or Metro Exodus can get exclusive Fortnite skins or a few hundred V-Bucks or whatever. That seems like a no-brainer for converting millions of Fortnite players into paying EGS customers.
 
Dec 3, 2018
5
Trying to install Sea of Thieves via windows store.

Every time i click install it comes up with "Can't install will retry later"

Any ideas? This store has always been horrible to use for me...
Do you have any weird partial installs of the game hanging around? Anything going on with your browser/addons (assuming you are doing it from the browser store and not the app)?

I've also had it just not work for a while - like there's an issue with the store itself & came back like 12h later and had it work correctly for me.

Sorry if this is like unplug and plug it back in, but yeah, those are the issues I've had/seen in the past.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,605
Trying to install Sea of Thieves via windows store.

Every time i click install it comes up with "Can't install will retry later"

Any ideas? This store has always been horrible to use for me...
I have that. I can't actually install *any* windows store games.

I've tried everything. Keep trying until you get an error code, then Google solutions, it might work for you.
 
Oct 25, 2017
13,734
Do you have any weird partial installs of the game hanging around? Anything going on with your browser/addons (assuming you are doing it from the browser store and not the app)?

I've also had it just not work for a while - like there's an issue with the store itself & came back like 12h later and had it work correctly for me.

Sorry if this is like unplug and plug it back in, but yeah, those are the issues I've had/seen in the past.
I have that. I can't actually install *any* windows store games.

I've tried everything.
My windows 10 wasn't up to date even though it said it was. I had a defender update, installed that and it works fine!
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,605
Definitely not the case for you?
Nope. It was working fine. I stopped using my PC for a month, came back, bought Forza Horizon 4 and it just wouldn't work, no games installed, windows store trash apps install just fine though.

Short of nuking my installation there is nothing to be done.