We’ve been hearing for a while now that due to the 12% distribution share that Epic Games takes instead of the 30% share that every single other digital distributor takes, it will put more money back into the pockets of developers. Technically, this is only true since revenue share is dependent on post-purchase revenue, and therefore a game has to move a certain volume in order to benefit from a higher revenue share, which is only possible when the distribution method can reach a sizable portion of the market. Well, Saber Interactive is one of the few developers who is passing on the savings before they’ve shipped any copies of the game, and so they announced that World War Z will launch on the Epic Games Store for $34.99 instead of $39.99.
Technically this is one of the few times where PC gamers are actually getting a discount for purchasing the game digitally. The news was made available via a post over on the Epic Games Store, where Matthew Karch, the CEO of Saber Interactive, explained…
“First of all, building games is costly, and so to receive 88% instead of 70% means we can invest more into making World War Z.
“Second, we’re passing along much of the savings to you as gamers. The price of World War Z on the Epic Games store is being dropped to $34.99 starting now and continuing through our April 16 launch and beyond. Any players who have already pre-purchased the game for $39.99 will get the $5 refunded back to them. We are thrilled to be able to share the developer-friendly benefits of the Epic Games store with you all, and can’t wait for you to play our game.”
Now, to the credit of Saber Interactive, they were one of the few developers to never commit to announcing that the game was coming to Steam. It will likely arrive a year later like most other Epic Games Store exclusives, but when it was first announced it was only for the Xbox One and PS4. Later on they confirmed that the game was only going to be available for the Epic Games Store and not Steam. So, unlike Phoenix Point they didn’t bait and switch gamers in and then try to justify it by saying that the money from the exclusivity deal was too good to pass up.
Even still, having the game on the Epic Games Store as an exclusive on the PC side is not a good look. A lot of gamers are just opting out of not using the storefront due to worries about privacy breaching, datamining, and Epic’s inescapable ties with Tencent Gaming, one of the most notorious and infamous companies on the planet.
It’s not that Tencent is going around exercising the kind of mustache-twirling villainy you would expect from EA, but they do have direct ties to the Chinese state parties, and so most gamers fear that their personal data will somehow make it back into the hands of the Chinese government. For people who don’t mind Communism (like Leftists, Liberals, and Democrats) this isn’t much of an issue, but for people who value their freedom, and who respect Western values, this comes across to them as an affront to their right to privacy.
Regardless of where you stand on the issue, World War Z will be releasing for the Xbox One, PS4, and on the Epic Games Store for PC starting April 26th.