Epic Games is, for most people, the creator of some of the most epic shooters ever released. From Gears of War to Unreal Tournament, Epic Games is a beloved developer of all things explosive. But even though it has offered a range of games throughout its storied history, it is looking to kill off single-player gaming in the future, in favor of the evolving multi-player experiences it has been developing lately.
The last major release it had with single-player content at its fore was Gears of War: Judgment, which was received relatively well, but not enough to really justify its greedy production budget. With that in mind, in recent years Epic has focused on its free-to-play efforts, Paragon and Fortnite, both of which will be driven by the community, funded through cosmetic enhancements much like League of Legends and its contemporaries.
And that’s the way it’s going to stay according to CEO Tim Sweeney, who said in a chat with Polygon that after Judgment, Epic realized that the big budget games required big publisher backing in order to be a safe bet. Their gigantic costs meant that if the game’s weren’t monumental successes, they could destroy a developer that decided to go it alone.
So in order to maintain creative freedom and continue employing the large number of highly skilled individuals that it does, Epic shifted gears to the new system.
“We recognized that the ideal role for Epic in the industry is to drive that,” Sweeney said, discussing how the biggest games in the world were often free to play now. “And so we began the transition of being a fairly narrow console developer focused on Xbox to being a multi-platform game developer and self publisher, and indie on a larger scale.”
By using community feedback and providing early access to relatively unfinished games, and with micro-transactions and similar incentives to spend, Epic hopes that it can not only remain afloat in a new and changing industry, but can provide better, ever evolving products for its fans too.
Do you like the sound of this? Or were you hoping Epic would one day remake the original Unreal campaign?