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PC Crowdfunded 'Outer Wilds' drops Steam for Epic Store exclusivity

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https://www.engadget.com/2019/05/13/crowdfunded-outer-wilds-becomes-epic-store-exclusive/

 

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It's not surprising to see Epic snapping up exclusives for its Games Store, but now it's making moves on crowdfunded titles. Mobius Digital has revealed that its space exploration title Outer Wilds (not to be confused with The Outer Worlds) will be a timed exclusive for the Epic Games Store, with other platforms "coming later." While that wouldn't be so much of a shock with a conventional release, many people pledged money to the Outer Wilds campaign in 2015 on the assumption they'd get it through Steam on launch day -- they now don't know how much longer they'll have to wait to play on their preferred platform.

 

Not surprisingly, some backers are upset. The timed exclusive has been likened to a "bait and switch" or even false advertising -- players expected a Steam release and now won't get it until months later at best. Some have said they'll seek refunds, while others are more concerned about the implications of releasing the game through a store that currently lacks features Steam users take for granted. Linux support is in doubt when that's not even an option through Epic's portal, for example.

 

Not everyone is opposed to the move. Some note that this might have been necessary to get the game across the finish line, while others noted that Epic's more developer-friendly royalty cut could be appealing to a small outfit. However, there's no question that this is a big gamble. Mobius is wagering that the exclusive won't alienate too many backers on the road to launch, and that its larger share of each sale will be worth going to a younger, smaller store that doesn't always have a great reputation among gamers.

 

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Yet another "bait and switch" for a crowdfunded game that will make backers are lot more cautious in the future and probably force demands for "platform release guarantees".

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I'm glad they did this because I hadn't heard of this game before this deal. Now I know not to bother... or get it on Xbox!

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Games like this are the ones that I happen to see on reddit or something and then pick up on an impulse.  This epic exclusivity might actually be saving me hundreds a year if they keep it up.

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The “fuck you, I got mine” mentality is really fucking over crowd funded games. I would love to see an added contactual line that prevents such changes after funding is completed. 

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Did they say their game would be on PC or did they specifically say it would release on Steam? That distinction is really what makes it a “bait and switch”.  If it was only said to get a PC/Xbox/PS4 release, then it still is, and people assuming it would get a day one Steam release had no guarantee of that

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18 minutes ago, Spawn_of_Apathy said:

Did they say their game would be on PC or did they specifically say it would release on Steam? That distinction is really what makes it a “bait and switch”.  If it was only said to get a PC/Xbox/PS4 release, then it still is, and people assuming it would get a day one Steam release had no guarantee of that

"Currently, we’re planning to release Outer Wilds on PC, Mac, and Linux through Steam next year. But our dream is to bring it to new platforms in as many languages as possible, and we need everyone’s help to make that happen!"

https://www.fig.co/campaigns/outer-wilds/about

They also had a steam page

https://store.steampowered.com/app/753640/Outer_Wilds/

 

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5 hours ago, Spawn_of_Apathy said:

Did they say their game would be on PC

Nobody just says their "game is coming to PC" with platform announcements. Because there's a distinction between stores and a DRM-free release. This one was absolutely coming to Steam, same with Phoenix Point or whatever. Their contract with Epic is important not to break, their contract with the people who literally made their game possible? Well that one's not a real contract so they can suck some dick I guess.


This is gonna cause some lasting damage with crowdfunding, as if it needed an even worse reputation.

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This has now happened to two games that were crowdfunded through FIG rather than Kickstarter which leads me to believe that it is the equity investor component of FIG that makes it a more viable candidate for this tactic from Epic whereas Kickstarter is "pure" crowdfunding with no equity investment component.

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13 minutes ago, SFLUFAN said:

This has now happened to two games that were crowdfunded through FIG rather than Kickstarter which leads me to believe that it is the equity investor component of FIG that makes it a more viable candidate for this tactic from Epic whereas Kickstarter is "pure" crowdfunding with no equity investment component.

 

I think the way they "curate" the Epic store is by seeing what's popular on a crowdfunding site and poaching it for themselves.

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On 5/13/2019 at 9:02 AM, SFLUFAN said:

Yet another "bait and switch" for a crowdfunded game that will make backers are lot more cautious in the future and probably force demands for "platform release guarantees".

You are so right. Going forward Kickstarters will have to set the table in where on the PC they are releasing up front. Switching things like this can really piss off the expected audience. I hope that ones that backed it requested a Steam key get that much.

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