Epic and Apple have been embroiled in a month long legal battle that is still too close to call. Epic began its fight strong, but as interest wanes Epic’s ace up its sleeve, the massive global Fortnite fanbase, seems to have little to offer. As Apple has begun to coordinate its response and develop its legal arguments we have to ask, did Epic overestimate the Fortnite community’s dedication?
Wielding Fortnite as a bludgeon
It’s fairly common knowledge that Epic had intended to use Fortnite as a bludgeon in its fight against Apple. When Epic updated Fortnite to violate Apple’s terms of service, it did so knowing it had already planned and produced a marketing campaign against Apple, even having a tournament suddenly pop up in Fortnite completely scheduled with full prize support.
It was blatantly obvious that not only had Epic expected Apple to remove Fortnite from the App Store, they had been able to time exactly when it would happen and plan around it. Therefore, it could be said that Epic began this fight with accurate foreknowledge of what it would entail, and decided that rallying the Fortnite player base was how they could win.
Epic fails to connect with Fortnite players
Unfortunately for Epic, it seems that they had overestimated how much the average Fortnite player cared about the game it its current state, with even less caring about Epic as a company at all. Additionally, Epic’s information campaign also ended up highlighting the company’s own business practices, which led many to the conclusion that Epic’s success would not mean anything to the average Fortnite player at all.
Fortnite was already the most profitable game in the world for two years running, it would be hard to draw the conclusion that Epic somehow needed more money to better support its players. This is compounded by the fact that many Fortnite players are upset with the way Epic has used Fortnite against them, especially with the direction its seasons have been going.
Eventually the question gets asked, how much money is enough? While it’s easy to agree that Apple is ripping people off, it’s hard to draw the conclusion that Epic isn’t. This presents players with a binary circumstance, whereby through a lengthy, costly, and uncertain legal battle, gamers and developers might be able to change which company gets to rip them off.
So why bother? Who could remain invested in this fight when Apple and Epic are both simply companies out to make the most money?Published 28 Sep 2020, 23:46 IST