Apple countersues Epic Games, accuses it of “unlawful conduct”

“Epic’s lawsuit is nothing more than a basic disagreement over money”

Apple has filed a countersuit against Epic Games, in response to the Fortnite developer’s latest injunction to restore the battle royale game on the App Store.

In the countersuit, which was filed on Tuesday (September 8), Apple accused Epic Games of seeking special treatment from App Store’s rules, and thereafter resorted to “self-help and subterfuge” when such a special deal was rejected by the tech giant. It added that the game developer’s introduction of an in-game payment method that bypassed the App Store’s 30 per cent fee was “little more than theft”.

In the 67-page filing, Apple also called Epic Games’ lawsuit “nothing more than a basic disagreement over money”, and noted that the developer has reportedly earned more than US$600million through the App Store. “Although Epic portrays itself as a modern corporate Robin Hood, in reality, it is a multi-billion dollar enterprise that simply wants to pay nothing for the tremendous value it derives from the App Store.”

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Fortnite Chapter 2, Season 3. Credit: Epic Games

Apple also claimed that Epic Games “fired the first shot in this dispute”, adding that “its willful, brazen and unlawful conduct cannot be left unchecked”. In this filing, Apple said that it is seeking compensatory and punitive damages from Epic Games related to the breach of contract, as well as an injunction against the developer from using its own external payment method.

Epic Games has yet to respond to Apple’s countersuit, but the two companies are scheduled to meet in court on September 28. Read the full countersuit here.

Last month, Apple terminated Epic Games’ account on the App Store. This meant that the rest of Epic Games’ mobile titles, such Battle Breakers and the Infinity Blade series, would be taken down from the App Store, joining the previously removed Fortnite.

Prior to that, Epic Games had won a temporary restraining order against Apple over the latter’s attempts to block the developer’s ability to support the Unreal Engine for iOS and Mac systems.

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