Epic is reportedly developing a new, opt-in review system for its online PC store.
Following accusations from users that a lack of user reviews and/or ratings "silences" consumers, a tweet by Epic CEO Tim Sweeney confirms that the developer is looking to implement a system based upon the Unreal Engine marketplace. Interestingly, it’ll be opt-in in a bid to manage what Sweeney calls "gaming-the-system" techniques that some gamers use, such as review bombing. But if developers don’t want reviews, they can simply choose not to opt-in.
"We’re working on a review system for the Epic Games store based on the existing one in the Unreal Engine marketplace," wrote Sweeney back in December (thanks, GI.biz). "It will be opt-in by developers. We think this is best because review bombing and other gaming-the-system is a real problem."
The new Epic Games Store is arguably the biggest industry news of 2018 as the Fortnite and Unreal Engine developer takes on Steam in what could prove to be the biggest shake-up of the PC games market since Valve’s platform launched back in 2003. Ubisoft is the latest company to move away from Steam and announce a partnership with Epic to bring its titles to the new Epic Games Store. Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, which launches on March 15th, will be the first Ubisoft title to release on the Epic Games Store, with pre-orders already available on the platform.
"While running Fortnite we learned a lot about the cost of running a digital store on PC. The math is quite simple: we pay around 2.5 per cent to 3.5 per cent for payment processing for major payment methods, less than 1.5 per cent for CDN costs (assuming all games are updated as often as Fortnite), and between 1 and 2 per cent for variable operating and customer support costs," Sweeney told MCV at the time the store launched.
"Fixed costs of developing and supporting the platform become negligible at a large scale. In our analysis, stores charging 30 per cent are marking up their costs by 300 to 400 per cent," he revealed. "But with developers receiving 88 per cent of revenue and Epic receiving 12 per cent, this store will still be a profitable business for us."