V-Bucks and all in-app purchases and microtransactions are now permanently cheaper in Fortnite, as Epic Games starts a feud with Google and Apple.
Just as high street and online stores take their cut out of physical game sales, so too do Apple and Google when it comes to buying anything on a smartphone, but Fortnite maker Epic Games has had enough.
Google (who own Android) and Apple take a massive 30% cut of all in-app sales, which presented a problem for Epic who wanted to reduce the price of Fortnite in-game currency V-bucks by 20% on all formats, including consoles and PC.
To make sure they still make some profit themselves they’ve circumvented the app stores by allowing players to pay them directly, so that Apple and Google don’t get a cut at all. Which is technically against the rules for video game apps.
The two mobile OS operators are not going to be happy about this when they find out, but for now the game shows two payment options on smartphones, one 20% cheaper than the other.
Many non-gaming apps, for companies including Amazon and Uber, already allow direct payments but this seems to be another example of video games being treated differently, following Apple’s refusal to allow Microsoft’s Project xCloud on iOS.
‘By offering an alternate payment system, we’re not only offering players more choice, but we’re able to pass along the savings to players’, said Epic in a statement.
Epic only take a 12% cut of revenues from third party games sold on the Epic Games Store, which is lower than Steam and most other online stores.
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