The creator of the XCOM franchise has claimed that the Epic Games Store is great for indie developers and games, after his studio Snapshot Games released Phoenix Point on the storefront as a timed exclusive in 2019.
Julian Gollop, who co-created the first X-COM game in 1994 at Mythos Games, has talked about the atmosphere and benefits of launching Phoenix Point as an initial Epic Games Store exclusive (via PC Gamer).
“When we did our Epic exclusive – this was the very early days of the Epic store promotion – yeah, there was a lot of hostility,” explained Gollop. “And also a lot of conspiracy theories about it. The whole Chinese spyware and all the rest of it.
“Obviously, that’s settled down a bit, and Epic has been great for many indies, in fact. It was another avenue to get funding, of course, which is very, very difficult to get with an indie studio. So overall, it was very positive for Phoenix Point itself.”
Not releasing on the same day across all storefronts on PC naturally means a developer’s game will be seen by a smaller audience, but Gollop notes how studios will often do whatever they can to get a game out in the first place.
“It’s always better to have the widest access to storefronts as possible,” Gollop said. “If you have the money to get to that finishing line, to get the game in a releasable state. But it’s usually not that easy, and developers have to look for other ways to secure the funding they need.”
Gollop’s recent comments on the Epic Games Store come into contrast with New Blood Interactive CEO Dave Oshry’s, who said on Twitter that “someone once described the Epic Games Store as a “marketing black hole” and it’s extremely accurate.”
Someone once described the EGS as a "marketing black hole" and it's extremely accurate.
— ULTRAKILL ACT II SOON™ (@DaveOshry) August 5, 2022
Oshry’s comment was in response to a post about Darkest Dungeon 2, with a user claiming that no one cares about the game’s current Early Access release, despite it being one of “the most anticipated indie sequels,” because it was exclusive to Epic.