Since launching the Epic Games Store, Fortnite creator Epic Games has been securing deals with various publishers and developers to offer their games exclusively. Several studios have already taken up that offer, and today the list got a little longer, as the PC version of Metro Exodus will be exclusive to the Epic Games Store, too.
Metro Exodus publisher Deep Silver made the announcement in a press release earlier today. Deep Silver CEO Dr. Klemens Kundratitz specifically referred to Epic Games' "generous revenue terms" as the reason for the exclusivity deal. Kundratitz said that it allows it to invest more into the Metro franchise and in its partnership with Metro Exodus developer 4A Games.
Epic Games founder and CEO Tim Sweeney echoed this, adding that the 88/12 revenue split enables companies to "further reinvest in building great games" while "improving the economics of game stores for everybody.” It's worth noting that while Metro Exodus is listed at $59.99 on Steam, it costs $49.99 on the Epic Games Store. The revenue split still means that Deep Silver/4A Games makes more money than it would have if the game was sold through Steam.
Because of the deal with Epic Games, pre-orders and sales of Metro Exodus on Steam will "soon" be removed, explains Deep Silver. Though existing pre-orders will be honored, Steam users will still be able to enjoy the game at launch, and they will have access to any future updates and DLC.
Some Steam users are upset, taking to the comments section of the games FAQ section on Valve's digital distribution site, protesting against exclusive deals like this. This is despite the fact that the Epic Games Store exclusivity allows Deep Silver to offer Metro Exodus at a lower price to fans.
Valve has also responded strongly against the exclusivity deal. In a statement, the Steam platform holder called the decision to make the game an Epic Games Store exclusive "unfair" to Steam users. The Valve statement has also been met with some fury online, with critics arguing that if Valve made its revenue terms better and addressed issues such as review-bombing and abuse and harassment on Steam forums, studios would be less inclined to sign these deals.
Valve is yet to detail a plan of action of how it will fight back against the Epic Games Store, which is quickly becoming a major competitor. Besides Metro Exodus, games such as Ubisoft's The Division 2 and Hades, the new title from Transistor developer Supergiant Games, are also offered exclusively on the platform. If Steam is to remain the biggest PC gaming marketplace, Valve is going to have to work hard.
Metro Exodus launches on February 15, 2019 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.