Epic Games raises 1 billion dollars to continue financing the Metaverse, their virtual paradise (and 200 are from Sony)
Buying Epic Games exclusives over the years in order to elbow your way into a landscape relentlessly dominated by Steam is which has caused tremendous losses to the platform. According PCGamer, the money invested by Epic only in the exclusives signed during 2020 reaches up to 444 million dollars and it is estimated that the investment will reach 600 million by the end of 2021.
Epic announced that, despite everything, they expected the store to be profitable in the near future, and the first step, as posted on your blog, it’s a billion dollar funding round. To this is added that, despite the long legal battle with Apple by the withdrawal of ‘Fortnite’ from the Apple Store, Epic is profitable: the company has communicated that closed 2020 with more than 160 million buyers, peaks of 56 million monthly active users and more than 700 million dollars spent on his store.
All these figures have come to light precisely in the context of the dispute with Apple, whose defense documentation you can read here and that is based on the fact that all that expense would not be recovered until 2027. But Epic’s forecasts are different, and that is why of those 1,000 million, 200 come from Sony. Nine months ago We were talking about the collaboration between the Japanese giant and the North American company in search of the construction of a virtual paradise. But that search continues.
Impossible worlds, big investments
Tim Sweeney, who nevertheless remains the majority shareholder of Epic, affirms that this investment “will help accelerate our work around creating connected social experiences on ‘Fortnite‘, ‘Rocket League‘ Y ‘Fall Guys‘while empowering game developers and creators with the Unreal Engine, Epic Online Services and the Epic Games Store. “The secret of Epic’s future is in that tentacle of its most popular games that refers to social experiences.
This impression is endorsed by Sony President and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida, stating that “Epic continues to bring game-changing experiences … We are excited to strengthen our collaboration to bring new entertainment experiences to people around the world.” . Clearly, Yoshida refers to the project known as Metaverso, the universe of interconnected virtual worlds in the style of what we saw in ‘Ready Player One’.
At the moment, the project is vague, although Sweeney has declared to media like VentureBeat which is about meeting friends in virtual environments to have social experiences: “In a virtual environment you can constantly jump between what happens in the real world and what happens in the game“he said.” I think that’s a key ingredient. And I think this mechanic is essential. It has been mechanically tested in dozens of different game genres. All the genres that we know are going to be represented. “
The experiments that ‘Fortnite’ has plotted, organizing concerts of real artists in virtual incarnations Y film premieres in collaboration with Hollywood production companies are examples of what Epic hopes the next entertainment revolution will be. Sweeney clarifies, however, that it will be a “linear evolution, not a massive and sudden leap”.
In addition to collaborations with Sony on issues related to future mobile virtual reality, Epic’s latest investments in digital rendering technology could go in that direction. This is the case, for example, of Metahuman Creator, a cloud-based Unreal Engine tool to create hyper-realistic avatars in less than an hour. At the moment it is focused on video games, but the promise of easily creating user avatars in virtual environments is clear, and its application for brands and personalities is obvious.
For now it is clear, it is a matter of time and money. And Epic continues to raise, round of funding after round of funding, significant amounts of both assets.