Shenmue 3 was announced back in 2015 at E3 by PlayStation. It was also announced that people could help support the game’s release by backing it on Kickstarter. While it is rare to hear triple-A games have Kickstarters, the series hadn’t finished their story for over 15 years. Shenmue 2 release back in 2001 for the Sega Dreamcast and the game ended on a cliffhanger for the next in the series. The game had a niche audience and the Dreamcast wasn’t as popular as the PlayStation One or the Nintendo 64 that were out at the time. The opportunity to help finance the 3rd game that fans so desperately wanted was exciting for them. However, this past E3 shocked and angered some fans as it was revealed that Shenmue 3 would release exclusively on the PC through the Epic Store.
Why are fans mad?
Many fans who backed the game were expecting to download the game via Steam. It was the promised distribution service when the game was announced. The change to the Epic Store was quite surprising and last minute considering the game will finally launch this year. The Epic Store is infamous for lack of security log-ins, poor interface, and their launching games exclusively on their system (Which PC never had the issue before). Not only that, the developers stated they will not refund backers who paid for the PC version of the game. Surprisingly, Epic is coming to the rescue.
Epic is funding the cost of all Kickstarter refunds resulting from Shenmue III’s move to the Epic Games store, so that refunds won’t reduce Ys Net’s development funding. https://t.co/mSGdbzYPJ5
Epic Games has so much money, they are actually refunding backers who paid for the PC version of the game. Rather than having Ys Net (Developers of Shenmue 3) or Deep Silver (Publishers) return the backer money, Epic will so that cost isn’t taken away from the development of Shenmue 3. CEO of Epic, Tim Sweeney, also announced that for any games backed on Kickstarter that went from PC to Epic Store exclusive will be refunded by the company if fans demand it. So fans can be happy about getting their refunds but still be angry about the game being on Epic Store. It will be interesting to see if being Epic Games exclusive on PC will reduce the sales.
Shenmue 3 will finally release on PlayStation 4 and the Epic Store on November 19th, 2019.
After writing about Valve offering more money for successful games yesterday, Epic Games (Creators of Fortnite) is planning to launch their online store that will give 88% of revenue from game sales to developers. In comparison, Sony, Microsoft, and Valve offer 30% of revenue to developers.
Thanks to the massive success of Fortnite, Epic has the money to offer these to developers according to founder and CEO Tim Sweeney. According to Forbes magazine in July 2018, Fortnite has made over $1 billion in revenue.
Another amazing deal Epic is offering: Any games that uses Unreal Engine 4 will not have to pay royalty fees to Epic if it’s sold on their game marketplace. Unreal Engine is used many many triple A games, including Kingdom Hearts 3, Fortnite, Injustice 2, mobile games, and more. It’s considered the definitive game engine for many users. This could give potential new studios or indie developers a chance to save money for game releases if they are sold on Epic’s marketplace. Any game is allowed on Epic’s marketplace, it doesn’t have to use the Unreal Engine.
In addition, Epic is also planning to launch their “Support-A-Creator” program. It will help support content creators on YouTube or streamers connect with developers. Developers can share a percentage of their revenue with video producers who make content about their games. Epic will cover the first 5 percent.
When will it launch?
The Epic Games store will launch on PC and Mac in 2018 so it’s coming soon. It will launch on Android in 2019 and they are planning to launch for iOS in 2019. There are no plans for the console platforms. The store is planning to launch with a small selection of handpicked games. Developers are free to use their own digital right management.
This marketplace will dramatically change the PC gaming marketplace. The opportunity for publishers and developers is insane. I’m unsure on how it may shake the other marketplace but game developers will begin to look to Epic to sell their titles. It’s rare to see a company using their wealth to support companies, especially in the gaming industry which is highly competitive. I look forward to 2019 and how everything may change.
People are trying to bring esports and professional gaming to a worldwide audience as it’s becoming more popular. People and or teams are competing all around the world and are representing their sponsors similar to physical sports teams. Some teams represent their countries similar to the Olympics such as the Asian Games. Earlier this year, gaming companies such as Riot, Blizzard, Epic, and the ESL, met with the Olympic Forums to discuss potentially having esports as an Olympic competition. The hopes would be the “government to help recognize esports as its own discipline” according to the CEO of Riot Games, Nicolo Laurent. Unfortunately, the Olympics will not allow any video games to be an Olympic event that has “killing” according to International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach.
Why did the Olympics deny video games from the Olympics?
While Esports may be in the Olympics in the future, Bach strongly stated “We cannot have in the Olympic program a game which is promoting violence or discrimination…They, from our point of view, are contradictory to the Olympic values and cannot therefore be accepted.” While people rebutted by stating some Olympic games involved dangerous weapons such as fencing, Bach said: “sport is the civilized expression about this.” Any games involved with “killing” for points/score will likely be denied by the Olympics in the near future. This would prevent popular esports titles from being an Olympic game such as Fortnite, Overwatch, League of Legends, and PUBG.
What are the pros for having esports in the Olympics?
If esports was legitimized by the Olympics, it would benefit the players. Players would able to receive their Visas more easily to travel internationally for tournaments. Many players and team owners must pay for the visas. This can lead to potential delays that may prevent the players from competing. It would also give teams and players more sponsors for financial support. It can also lead to more television broadcasting opportunities for video games. Below are the hours viewed on Twitch and YouTube. If channels begin streaming video games, it could lead to people actually watch tv.
How do you feel about video games not allowed in the Olympics?
Epic Games, the gaming studio behind Fortnite, announced yesterday that they will provide $100,000,000 to fund prize pools for Fortnite competitions. How it will be distributed remains to be announced. Epic has stated that their approach “will be different…to be more inclusive, and focused on the joy of playing and watching the game.”
$100 million is the highest prize pool for any esports game event. Last year, Dota 2, Valve’s MOBA, had their International prize pool set at $24,687,919.00 thanks to players contributing to the pot bonus. It was split amongst the top 18 teams with 1st place taking about $10.8 million. How Fortnite will split the $100 million remains to be determined as this will be their first year hosting a prize pool.