Should we discuss what happens if BL3 is Epic Store exclusive?

I’m not big on boycotts, but in recent times more publishers are going this route. I personally can’t see Gearbox making this decision, afterall there are no achievements on Epic Launcher or cloud saves. But something tells me the decision is out of Randy Pitchford’s hands.

OK how about letting us activate the Epic Store version on Steam? GEARBOX is that an option?

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The game hasn’t even been announced yet, never mind pricing and release channels… It’s a bit early to be talking about boycotts. Just wait and see; there really is no point worrying about these things ahead of any real news from the developer/publisher.

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Epic store is the worst possible platform for consumers

The recent unauthorized data collection from Steam users doesn’t help either.

However, the exclusivity money could be tempting :worried:

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I understand your point of view, however after Metro Exodus, The Division 2, we really shouldn’t be surprised if Take Two decides to put profits first instead of customers and make this Epic Store only.

edit: LOOK WHAT I JUST FOUND


Damn Randy please don’t go exclusive.

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The decision isn’t up to Randy P. - it’s up to Take-Two (or the 2K part of Take-Two), the publisher. Randy might have some influence, but the money people are the publishers and the question is about which outlet will make Take-Two the most. The Epic store is offering nice incentives right now but if the numbers show they’d take a big hit in sales, that cost more money than the incentives are worth, they aren’t going to go with the Epic store.

Frankly I don’t see what all the hoopla is about; yeah the Epic store isn’t very good right now, but Steam was terrible when it launched and it improved to the very good service it is now. I’m all for cutting the Epic store some slack, they’ll get there. And it isn’t like you can’t play with your friends or communicate with them, you can still do that. It also isn’t like you need to have a bunch of launchers open all at the same time and this is just one more - I don’t let launchers start unless I’m going to play a game associated with it so I don’t have more than one open at a time. Don’t really get the “too many launchers” thing.

Reasons I personally won’t be boycotting Borderlands 3:

  1. I’ll have waited long enough by the time it gets released, I’m not waiting another year.

  2. A boycott would hurt Gearbox and that’s not okay with me, especially since the ultimate decision-maker won’t be Randy.

  3. I’m all for a bigger slice of the pie being available to developers.

  4. Steam is a good service in a lot of ways, but Valve could do better and competition will help make it better (at least I hope it will).

I can’t deny that the best way to benefit us (gamers) in the long run could be to boycott the Epic store, but I think they very likely planned to do the things we want them to do anyway so not buying Borderlands until another year goes by isn’t, in my opinion, something that’s going to make much difference in the long run. (But we do need to keep letting them know what we don’t like and what we want to have included.)

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Talking of… not particularly relevant to the immediate discussion, but this article provides an idea of just what goes into Steam these days:

You don’t tend to hear much from any of the platforms about network stuff, so it’s interesting to get a peak behind the scenes.

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I think that is unlikely unless Epic has paid them multiple millions for exclusivity.

TakeTwo has repeatedly mentioned (without being specific, but we all know) on their earnings calls that a major franchise in FY 2020 (Apr 1 2019-Mar 31 2020) is “expect it to enhance our results next fiscal year”.
Narrowing to one platform, particularly a new platform without broad adoption, would again require a substantial subsidy to meet an enhanced revenue goal. Considering that BL2 has been estimated to have sold more than 13 million copies, TakeTwo would be reasonably expecting a multi-million sales figure across 3 platforms (PS4, XBOne, Steam) at or within a month or two of release, and they would be foolish to forgo that revenue for exclusivity.
Again, I personally would expect an exclusive to require Epic to contribute 10-20 million to get that, and I don’t see that as likely, even if the exclusive is only for 3-6 months.
–RoA

I think at this point we should prepare for it being an exclusive and being on any other digital store will be a bonus.

Exclusivity is always a bad thing.
Competition is good, but the way in which are doing things is not competition. People are not choosing to use Epic because it offers better services or features, because it’s more secure.

Those using it are using it because they have no other choice.

Removing choice from the consumer is never a good thing. Even MS realized this and are bringing the HALO MCC to Steam.
A wider consumer base is always the better way to go. Use as many digital distribution services are possible, but don’t limit your consumers by forcing them to use a service they don’t trust, or don’t want to use.

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But Steam is an exclusive service; there are many games I can not buy and play, from anyone who sells them, and not use Steam.

It would be great if it were changed so that the games that require us to use Steam no longer require it exclusively; so we are allowed to choose, for example, the Epic store instead, and vice versa. Not sure what the down side of that is (to the businesses that provide the services) but requiring Epic to allow people to use Steam as their launcher without Valve allowing people to choose Epic is NOT competition in a free market.

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There is a difference between games only coming to steam because the other launchers aren’t attractive enough and bought exclusivity. In theory games don’t even need any launchers to work, but using a widely accepted platform like steam gives your game exposure and security.
What the Epic Games Store does is just buying costumers by leaving them no choice. Also, I know that many use Steam’s quasi-Monopoly as an argument, but there is a catch with that: Steam didn’t force a Monopoly, it was just the first of what it’s doing and is doing it (overall) better than it’s competition.

Epic on the other hand leaves us consumers no other choice and on top of that, it spies on us. It’s also heavily lacking in features right now and wants to let reviews’ viewability be decided by the publisher/developer. It’s highly anti-consumer.

Everyone has to decide on their own what he/she does if BL3 turns out to be exclusive to the epic store. I’d say that people should let Gearbox know what they think about it in this forum. I personally will not buy it on PC if its exclusive as I don’t support the epic store. I want to support Gearbox though, so I would probably buy it for PS4.

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As someone who doesn’t own and has never owned a console, I will share with you what happens in my mind whenever something is released exclusively to console…

“Huh. I guess I’ll play something else.”

There you go. That’s what happens if you don’t have/don’t like the platform the game is released on. You don’t play it.

Thoughts on Epic Store… never used it. Can’t comment on whether or not it sucks. Probably going to wait a week or two on B3 regardless of platform to see how invasive the business side is on the game experience. The more in your face the microtransactions/business end is and the more it butts into my immersive fantasy experience, the less likely I am to pick it up. I don’t mind microtransactions as long as the game is not pay to win and as long as it doesn’t interfere with my experience.

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I’m all for competition.
Competition that brings about better services, more secure services… better pricing… better features.

But, how Epic is doing things is not competition.
They are not winning customer loyalty out of good work, they are forcing customers by leaving them with no other option.
Yes, if given the choice, most people would choose to stay with Steam. Out of familiarity, security… but that should be the consumers right.
If Epic want to unseat Steam, they need to actually be able to meet them head on. Directly. Not by spying on Steam user data, bribing already Steam listed titles to be exclusive to them…

Epic has a long way to go to actually earning the good will and respect of the consumer.
And, with every new exclusive they announce… that actually becomes harder and harder.

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Like many who give this argument, you don’t understand what exclusivity is. Steam is not an exclusive service for third party developers. They are not bound to Steam, they can sell their games on any platforms they want. Maybe a dev wants to sell on Steam and Origin, fine, they can do that as Valve has no claim on ownership of title exclusivity. If you have a game on steam, there is nothing barring you from selling it on other platforms. It’s just that Steam is the oldest and the most feature rich out of all the gaming platforms so that’s where most third party developers go and settle.

Then you have Epic which is the exact opposite. Even if it’s just for a year like that ‘Outer Worlds’ game, that’s a terrible restriction that just takes any potential choice away from the consumer. That’s the very definition of exclusivity and that’s a big problem.

Though, I think the word you’re looking for is ‘monopoly’, at least that can sorta be argued. But calling Steam an ‘exclusive service’ is incorrect.

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We are looking at “exclusivity” from two different viewpoints. Bottom line, I am forced to use Steam for any game that has a Steam code. It excludes all other methods of launching the game (including NOT using a launcher). I simply can not play Borderlands 2 without using Steam, for example.

And I won’t be able to choose any other launcher - EVER! There isn’t any kind of “exclusive for 1 year” deal, it’s “use our platform or don’t play, period, forever”. What isn’t exclusive about that?

Valve’s policy is to allow (some) non-Steam games to be linked to Steam, but they do NOT reciprocate; you can NOT launch Borderlands 2 from the Origin launcher. Steam IS an exclusive service.

As far as Epic spying on us - yup, join the internet my friend. If Valve isn’t spying on us through Steam - and we KNOW they collect a lot of data, it’s up to you whether or not you believe they sell it to third parties - then Valve is just about the only major entity that isn’t sharing (selling) information about its customers, because everyone else is. Got Facebook? Google much? Use a smart phone?

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It would be useful to make and keep a clear distinction between paid exclusivity and functional exclusivity: when BL2 launched, how many choices for digital distribution platforms were there on PC? Otherwise, this is just going devolve into a semantic argument that won’t help anyone.

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That’s up to developers. Shadow Warrior 2 is available both on Steam and GOG. Both versions have playable online co-op.
Publishers probably have a final say in this, since Gearbox published games are on GOG. (And 2k’s, so I don’t know what’s up with BL not being there. Maybe they prefer using Steamworks for online play.)

Also, GOG Connect:

You’ll be able to permanently import all the [Steam] games listed below to your GOG library – assuming you own them. The eligible games are limited-time offers made possible by participating developers and publishers, so stay tuned for more games to come.

It’s up to developers and publishers to reach out to Origin, Uplay, etc. to sell games on their stores or even link accounts and give free copies of already bought titles.

I have a feeling they tried, but said stores did not want this. Clearly it works for GOG.

As for Epic, they could have put their fortnite money to making a better client and store.
Sell games at $50 and cover the $10 out of their pocket while keeping their revenue share AND allowing other stores to sell games at regular $60.
They don’t even need to drive customers to their store and build a userbase, because they already have one with fortnite.

They chose the scummy way. I can only hope it comes to bite them later.

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Borderlands originally used GameSpy for on-line play on PC. Then GameSpy shutdown, effectively ending on-line play. This got fixed, but it could be the only way to make it work in a time-efficient manner was to go with Steamworks. Note that this also included the ability for those who had bought a physical disk version, which would still be locked to the GameSpy servers, to convert it to a Steam version so they could play on-line.

(Edit: that shutdown affected PS3 players too! Bizarre to think about that happening now. Also, there were a bunch of other 2K published games affected, so they needed to find a quick solution for multiple titles.)

Thanks, hadn’t thought of the publisher/developer being the one that made it Steam exclusive (or not). That said, the link you provided shows no games listed, and GOG is a kind of special case in that they deal with DRM-free content.

But in the end I still have to use Steam to launch many of the games I play and I still have no choice in the matter.

As far as Epic being “scummy”, well, that’s more a matter of opinion than fact wouldn’t you say? Sloppy, absolutely, but I might call Valve “scummy” for the amount they gouge publishers to be on their platform. Valve is basically charging what GameStop does without the need to maintain brick-and-mortar stores or distribute physical copies.

Ad-blocker issues?

Hmmm - I think I know someone who might like some of those!