It all started when Epic decided that they would use Fortnite to support microtransactions that circumvent Apple’s App Store, thus saving themselves the hefty 30% commission for using the official channels. When Apple responded by pulling Fortnite from the App store, Epic decided to hit the courts.
Chaos ensued with the suspension of Epic’s App Store developer account, court injunctions and countersuits. Now Epic are ramping up the ruckus by dragging influencers into their battle, presumably hoping their support can be bought with free swag.
Related: What Is Epic Games’ Apple Lawsuit All About?
Epic’s basic argument in all of this is that the 30% commission Apple charge is too high. While many small developers in particular would agree, the way they are fighting the battle is laughable. The launch of their #FreeFortnite campaign involved them trying to convince us all that Epic is the downtrodden marginalized company being mis-treated by evil corporation Apple. Invoking George Orwell’s 1984 while simultaneously allegedly asking for special treatment is bad enough, but now, they’re dragging influencers into the mess.
As reported by Greg Miller, Epic are sending out Free Fortnite Swag, presumably trying to get influencers to spread their message. It includes a Samsung Galaxy Tab S7, a Free Fortnite Jacket and a patronising card, all wrapped up in packaging that’s a blatant rip-off of Apple’s aesthetic. This embarrassed emoji says it all.
While Fortnite players lose out as they currently can’t play the latest version of the game on Apple devices, Epic are apparently dropping cash on gear they hope influencers will wear to promote their agenda. Surely this is propaganda at its best? Do they really think influencers can be persuaded to join their “cause” by bunging a few freebies in the post? Surely if they had a solid campaign, said influencers would already be actively supporting it?
Most gamers seem, instead, to be pretty sick of Epic painting themselves as some kind of man of the people underdog when they are actually an insanely rich corporation. It’s also worth remembering that a large portion of Epic’s fortune comes from Fortnite microtransactions, which in many cases are when children funnel their pocket money into shiny digital items. These same children who now can’t play the latest version of Fortnite if they are using an Apple device and have no control over what other devices they have access to. We’ll let you think about that one for yourselves.
Sadly, we have months of this nonsense to go as well, since the latest news suggests that the trial won’t even begin until May. And with the current state of the world, who knows if that will be delayed?
We’re in for a rough ride – welcome to the Tilted Towers of discourse.
Next: #FreeFortnite Is A Joke Because Fortnite Isn’t A Marginalized Identity
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