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Report: Epic Games Paid $10 Million for Control Exclusivity

Digital Bros (the parent company of Control‘s publisher 505 Games) has disclosed they received a payment of €9.49 million from Epic Games, causing speculation as to if this was the incentive for Control becoming an Epic Games Store exclusive.

The news comes via Niko Partners’ Senior Analyst Daniel Ahmad, reporting on Digital Bros’ financial report.  Editor’s Note: .pdf hosted by DigitalBros.com

As explained on Page 25, Control earned €9.49 million (over $10 million by today’s exchange rate). While on paper it is stated purely as revenue, the game had not yet released. Control launched on August 27th, while the report is from June 30th- almost two months prior.

This is explained on page 25 (in Italian):

“The revenues deriving from the personal computer version of the video game Control were significant. Yes it is a product developed together with the Finnish company listed on the Nasdaq First North, Remedy Entertainment. The game in different versions, for personal computers and consoles, was launched on the 27th August 2019, but the contractual structure with the digital marketplace that required the exclusivity of the video game of the personal computer version has allowed the recognition of revenues already starting from this exercise.”

The marketplace in question seems to be the Epic Games Store, as page 26 notes Epic Games gave €9.49 million. While this is alongside storefronts such as Sony Playstation Network and Microsoft Xbox Live, Control had not yet been released on either of those platforms. As such, the other digital store fronts are most likely for other titles Digital Bros published.

Epic Games Store exclusivity incentives have included a larger cut of profits, upfront payments of undisclosed amounts of money, and a “guarantee of sales.” The latter is a prediction of what the game would have sold on other platforms such as Steam, which Epic Games then pay developers should those sales not be met.

Going by PC Games Insider‘s report that Control‘s budget was €20 million to €30 million, then it could be assumed that the Epic Games Store exclusivity deal can include around 35% to 40% of a game’s budget being paid off, along with the other aforementioned incentives.

However other factors may contribute to what the payment may be, as well as different publishers and games resulting in different deals.

Speaking to GameDaily.biz, an Epic Games Store representative offered a statement, revealing very little:

“We don’t comment on the terms of our deals. Everyone should play Control; it’s really good.”

The offer does not seem to be worth the risk for some. Due to the ramping bad press of Epic Games Store exclusivity (especially when cancelling planned Steam releases), some have rejected the Epic Games Store’s exclusivity offer outright, including Bandai NamcoMicrosoft, and indie developer Unfold Games– going as far as to say pulling Darq from Steam for Epic Games Store exclusivity would ruin their credibility.

While the parent company of Control‘s publisher has declared their financial matters, the game’s developer may have wished to keep their transactions quiet. On August 26th we reported how Remedy Entertainment’s CEO and Chairman sold stocks in the company prior to the game’s release.

What so you think? Sound off in the comments below!

Ryan Pearson

About

Taking his first steps onto Route 1 and never stopping, Ryan has had a love of RPGs since a young age. Now he's learning to appreciate a wider pallet of genres and challenges.