Many online gaming stores have opened since Steam set the digital distribution world alight, we have EA's Origin, Ubisofts own online game store and now Epic Games online store and Discord wants a piece of the action! It's all heating up in this area of the gaming industry which can offer companies decent margin and reduce costs instead of having to make and sell physical copies of games. Steam have arguably always had that appeal to developers to be the first choice they go to unless they're hosting it on their own store of course.
Ubisoft have taken a giant step in moving away from Steam, is it a risky move? At this stage it's difficult to tell but the popularity of Fortnite has meant that many people who are likely to purchase the game will already have the Epic Games launcher installed on their PC and with a brilliant game like The Division 2 coming out people will buy it and load it from another digital store if they have to. It seems like a low to medium risk move as the general larger and wider audience of Steam is what attracts developers to publish their game digitally on there, you'd think it simple really - the bigger the audience the more chance of a sale over and above their core player base.
Here is what Ubisoft have to say about the deal:
We entrust Epic to deliver a smooth journey for our fans, from pre-ordering the game and enjoying our Beta to the launch of Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 on March 15,” said Chris Early, Vice President of Partnerships. “Epic continues to disrupt the videogame industry, and their third party digital distribution model is the latest example, and something Ubisoft wants to support.
Tim Sweeney, Founder and CEO of Epic said of the deal:
As long-time fans and partners of Ubisoft, we’re thrilled to bring a range of awesome Ubisoft games to the Epic Games store
This shows that we are looking at a long term partnership between Ubisoft and Epic, let's hope for Ubisofts sake it is profitable for them and they can get the sales they have predicted! You can read the news post in the Epic Games blog here.