Epic Games has reportedly courted Sony to release its first-party games exclusively on the Epic Games Store.
The Epic Games vs. Apple trial continues to be a goldmine in revealing the corporate wheeling and dealing that goes on behind the scenes in the ultra-secretive video game industry.
The latest reveal concerns Epic Games’ ambitions to have the Epic Games Store become the first destination for players to buy Microsoft, Sony and even Nintendo first-party exclusives. Among several tactics to grow the store’s userbase, Epic proposed a strategy to convince the top console platform holders to bring their games to PC.
The document explaining this was apparently shared by accident, as it’s since been deleted. But not before Resetera grabbed a screenshot of it. This isn’t actually the first time confidential information was accidentally made public, Sony’s unwillingness to play ball on cross-play was one such incident.
According to the proposal, Epic was willing to offer Sony $200 million in minimum guarantees and other incentives to get four-to-six first-party PlayStation games as exclusives on the Epic Games Store. It’s not clear if these titles would be exclusive in perpetuity, or simply timed.
It’s also unclear whether Epic had known about Sony’s intentions to bring its first-party games to PC at the time, so this could have been an attempt to convince Sony to port some of its biggest PS4 games to PC. At the time this document was made, Epic had yet to receive any feedback on its offer to Sony.
Since then, of course, we saw the release of Horizon Zero Dawn on PC – across Steam and EGS, and we’re currently just a few days away from the launch of Days Gone, which is also due out on both PC stores.
But Epic didn’t stop there. The company was also interested in Microsoft’s first-party content, and had actually began that conversation but didn’t receive encouraging feedback. For starters, the document mentions that the leader of Xbox Game Pass is “against what we’re doing”, likely referring to Epic’s exclusive-buying tactics.
It also said that because Microsoft is going after developers and publishers to put their games into Game Pass, the platform holder is effectively competing against Epic. Finally, the document also suggests that Microsoft and Valve have a good relationship, with Phil Spencer and Gave Newell “meeting occasionally.”
As for Nintendo’s first-party games, which Epic actually wanted to pursue, the document has little to say there. Epic called it a “moonshot”, based on Nintendo’s history with bringing its games to third-party platforms. At the time the document was written, Epic had not started those conversations.