Upcoming Epic From Epic To Be Epic (And PC-Only)

By Nathan Grayson on April 10th, 2012 at 10:30 am.


Epic Games may be best known for the awesome Jazz Jackrabbit, but it seems like they’re ready to move on to other things. Other things on the PC, apparently. Epic’s newly teased PC-only project has, in all seriousness, been a long time in coming. ”We might be working on a PC-only title,” Epic president Mike Capps said during a PAX panel (via Joystiq). Bleszinski then drove the point home in his trademark chainsaw-gun-like fashion. “Let me say that again: we are working on a PC game.” Apparently, it’s an unannounced project, so that probably rules out the Minecraft-inspired Fortnite. Epic’s staying tight-lipped beyond that, but for now “existent” is a step in the right direction.

Free-to-play Unreal Tournament? Why, that would just be wild speculation…

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99 Comments »

  1. RakeShark says:

    Damn it Cliff, you broke my heart and curb-stomped it before. Now you’re making things difficult for me. Yes I remember the good times of Unreal and UT, but I’m Steam’ed and have hundreds of games.

    Look, I need to think about this, just… don’t send me flowers, alright?

  2. Volrath says:

    Maybe we’ll finally get an FPS again which doesn’t suck. That hasn’t happened since… hell I don’t even remember really.

    • iGark says:

      Tribes Ascend

      • Derppy says:

        Indeed, try Tribes: Ascend beta.

        Classic skill-based, fast-paced FPS action. Free to play, but not pay to win. Best FPS experience I’ve had in years.

        I hope the game gets popular, it has huge eSports potential, at least if they get LAN gaming game recording tools to it.

        • Phantoon says:

          Their direct support of the 4chan/Reddit bout was a good sign for this.

          [VWV] Incoming enemy vehicle!
          [VWV] Incoming enemy vehicle!
          [VWV] Incoming enemy vehicle!
          [VWV] Incoming enemy vehicle!

        • El_Emmental says:

          I confirm this (the fact that it’s a good game), T:A is a part of the answer to “is there any good recent FPS ?”. I know it’s not big enough to become “the” FPS, but it’s pretty good at its job.

        • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

          Is it better than Global Agenda? I played that for a month or so, and while it had some serious potential, the matchmaking, pings, and a few game balance problems just made it not much fun after a while.

  3. ChromeBallz says:

    I’m 99% sure it’s going to be an Unreal title based on UE4.

    Maybe they learned from their mistakes in UT3?

    • CaspianRoach says:

      This, most probably.

      Quote from wiki about UE4:

      In February 2012, Mark Rein (the CEO of Epic) said “people are going to be shocked later this year when they see Unreal Engine 4″.[14] The press revealed that Unreal Engine 4 would be unveiled to limited attendees at the 2012 Game Developers Conference.[15]

      And as we all know you can’t shock anyone with xbox360 and ps3 graphic capabilities anymore.

      • Brun says:

        Haven’t they already confirmed that UE4 was targeted at “next-gen platforms”?

        • Daryl says:

          Yep. They said in 2008 that UE4 will target consoles first and PC later. Of course, that was 4 years ago and things have changed in gaming since then. Maybe they’re seeing the resurgence of PC gaming and deciding to hop back on the bandwagon?

          And I don’t believe it will be a UT game. It will probably be something new.

          • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

            They stated in a UT3 postmortem that the game flopped badly enough that they were shelving the franchise for now, indeed. That might actually be a good thing, though- I would rather UT4 be a proper game instead of another Unreal Engine tech demo like UT3 was. A release too early in the UE4 lifecycle might relegate the next UT to that same fate.

  4. Was Neurotic says:

    Browser-based UT would be awesome.

  5. Prime says:

    Meanwhile, Epic’s other mouthpiece reveals that some prejudices/excuses die very hard indeed…

    PC Piracy is the Devil once more. Coming across a bit schizophrenic today, Epic?

    • RegisteredUser says:

      The game was the polar opposite of the structure and enjoyment that Painkiller was, what did they expect?

      Maybe it sold more on consoles, because you made it like a fucking console game? Popup text with what to do next for idiots, achievements as a core concept, having to QTE/press-by-press climb stuff..and there isn’t even jumping!

      Compare to fast paced run and gun frenzy in PK that did sod all in terms of “helping” you with hints or other constant bickering, cutscening or “events”, but concentrated on slaying shit and being fun.
      You cater to the way console people play as opposed to PC and then sell more there than on the PC.
      Wow, dang, now THAT was a surprise.

      It might also not have helped making a fairly open to configuration engine have ENCRYPTED .ini files, just to spite people that could actually access and modify them(PC users).

      But yes, of course, evil pirates.

      • Phantoon says:

        I agree with you that they’re polar opposites. Painkiller had all the elements of a game I’d love, but I absolutely hated it and thought it was complete crap.

        Bulletstorm has no right to be fun, and should be crap on all accounts. And yet I enjoyed it.

        Maybe it was just the “HAVE TO KILL EVERYTHING” bit that turned me off. In other games, you kill bad dudes because they’re in the way. Painkiller will literally not let you leave the immediate area until you kill every single bad dude, even the ones that are on a timer so you stand around or run in circles while you wait for the game to spit out more bad guys. Or they could be hidden behind a building, trapped by a chest high wall.

    • Droniac says:

      Oh wow, that’s just silly. They refuse to release a PC demo, do not promote the PC version, and make the PC port so bad that you need to modify the – encrypted! – config files to make it playable, and then blame poor PC sales on piracy.

      Bulletstorm was a pretty good game, but it was Epic’s batshit crazy decision making that ruined the PC sales, not piracy.

      • V. Profane says:

        They were probably right in the first place with the PC demo: I played it when it finally came out and that’s why I didn’t buy the game.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      But I thought it used GFWL, thus fixing the problem of piracy – for ever?

      • Unaco says:

        Where did you get that idea from? Yes, it uses GFWL. But no, GFWL doesn’t really do much in the way of preventing piracy. It’s an optional thing for a start (you don’t actually HAVE to sign in to GFWL), and if you’re not logged in, the only thing that needs to be done is protecting saves which tend to corrupt in offline mode.

        • sneetch says:

          According to my instrumentation that was sarcasm, Unaco. I’m reading over 2,000 sarcons per word, it’s pretty sarcastic.

        • Apples says:

          Oh Unaco, you’re such a ball of concentrated rage you can’t even tell when other people are hating on things too. never change

          edit: that is just a joke about how your comments often turn into huge arguments on here, i’m sure you’re actually perfectly fine haha

        • Unaco says:

          I can see it’s sarcasm… but why would you make a sarcastic comment about GFWL preventing Piracy, or being a solution to piracy? As far as I’m aware, they’ve only ever pushed GFWL as having some general 0-day piracy prevention (and a single online activation to decrypt). It’s never been marketed, or pushed or hailed as a piracy solution. I was wondering if that had changed, hence asking where Lars got the idea for his joke from.

          • Phantoon says:

            Because there’s no reason to be so serious about everything, ever.

            Chill out. GFWL sucks. That’s the joke.

            I’m worried you hunt down comedians because other people laugh when you can’t.

          • Unaco says:

            It’s not a very good joke though, is it? Sure… if it was UBI-DRM we were talking about, then it might be relevant. But it just doesn’t work with GFWL.

          • Phantoon says:

            GFWL was abysmally terrible.

          • liquidsoap89 says:

            I would imagine they don’t tout it as “piracy prevention” software because it’s awful at doing so.

          • Unaco says:

            You mean, in the same way a kettle doesn’t advertise itself as being able to wash clothes… because it doesn’t try to do that?

            You know, Steam is terrible at De-fragging my hard drive.
            MATLAB is apalling for writing LaTEX markup.
            Obama hasn’t gotten me laid.
            *Nix systems have failed to cut my phone bills in half.
            Kickstarter hasn’t taught me an appreciation for East African cuisine.

        • subedii says:

          Whenever the topic of GFWL comes up amongst its hardcore fanboys (it does actually have some, although not so many now since the GFWL forums got canned and replaced with a small section at Xbox.com), a key argument for it is often that it outright “prevents” piracy and that the only reason you’d be wanting a game on say, Steam, instead is because you just want to pirate it.

          I wish I was making this up.

          • Unaco says:

            By ordinary people, sure. But not by MS themselves (except for the 0-day piracy protection, which has apparently been reasonably successful).

    • Apples says:

      This is why the game industry secretly likes pirates. They have a symbiotic parasitic relationship of some sort. Pirates steal from the game companies but the game companies can always blame poor sales of bad games on them in a pinch!

      Well, it will be interesting to see if they can actually create something that ‘feels’ like a PC game. Pretty much all their recent games are not just on consoles, they intrinsically feel like console games, from content to gameplay.

      • Phantoon says:

        Game companies would blame pirates for poor sales even if literally no one at all pirated the game.

        It’s a scapegoat, and an excuse. In reality, some games are just terrible.

        • Prime says:

          I’m not sure that describes Bulletstorm, however. I think it’s just one of those games that failed to capture the public’s imagination or coin-purse. Blaming it – again – on Piracy is starting to sound like blaming the Gods for yet another failed harvest.

          • Phantoon says:

            Dude, a couple thousand years ago, that would’ve sounded reasonable.

            This didn’t even make sense the first time.

          • Prime says:

            Dude, it makes perfect sense. Unlike your comment.

      • RegisteredUser says:

        Kinda agree on both points.

    • InternetBatman says:

      Pirates secretly hacked into their files, changing their ads to make the game look boring.

    • oceanclub says:

      I don’t understand the “PC piracy” excuse here either. If Bulletstorm, a console game ported to PC, it sold well on consoles, and not on PC, wouldn’t that make them do a console-only sequel? Epic seem to add “PC piracy duh” to everything in the way Cato the Elder used “Carthage delenda est”.

      P.

  6. DestructibleEnvironments says:

    Did someone say jazz jackrabbit on GOG? No? Aw god damn it. :(

  7. RegisteredUser says:

    If it’s F2P and online, I don’t care about it. If it’s (mainly focussed on) Multiplayer, I don’t care about.

    If its too console-tasty (two guns! recharging health! checkpointing! never worry about choices, saving or survival again! yay!) FPS I don’t care about it.

    I am sick and tired, fed up and annoyed with this nonsense bunch of trends of the last 10 years.

    Yes, I know I am a positive cloud of fluffy white.

  8. Alien426 says:

    Frankly, when I read PC-only I got my hopes up. But to a lot of developers lately, PC exclusive means some crap like Free To Pay, browser-based or “social” games. Stuff that does not make good use of PCs in my opinion. I really wish the new game is something that the old Epic would have made.

  9. Durkonkell says:

    So! F2P or MMO?

    Because everyone knows that those are the only games that can be profitable as PC-exclusives.

    [Pessimism Mode: Off]

  10. Milky1985 says:

    Epic are working on a PC game, i’m working on trying to give a damn about this. After the awful treatment of the PC gamers recently by them (they should be putting a muzzle on a certain outspoken person over there), and the brownfest of gears of war still in my mind i jsut don’t think they are capable any more of making any decent. They only seem to aim at the average 18 year old american who loves watching macho man running around.

  11. Eclipse says:

    F2P Unreal Tournament mmofps.

  12. BobbleHat says:

    Hmm. I wonder if it’ll be a free-to-play FPS. There really aren’t enough of those around.

  13. vrekman64 says:

    I will quote a comment for the same news, in another news site, that I read. It represents my opinion 100%:

    “Well, Epic… you can shove it up your a$$”

    You forgot pc gamers, it is only right for the gamers to forget you.

  14. Zeewolf says:

    The only reason a company like Epic would make it PC only is “Free to Play”. Unfortunately.

  15. hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

    I remember when this would have made me really excited.

    Too tired of getting shit on by Epic in release after release to care now though. The last thing they released that brought me more enjoyment than rage was UT2004, and that game was largely an apology for fucking things up in UT2003.

  16. Cytrom says:

    Proper UT or nothing. I don’t care about anything Epic shits on the PC plate these days. There are much better PC devs out there to bother with their kind (sellouts).

    After the PC success of Skyrim and bunch of great games released in 2011 (plus the growing F2P market), devs all of a sudden think its not a dead platform anymore, but the reality is, it never was. It was just the good pc games that died. And crappy console ports will continue to make pathetic sales.

    • Phantoon says:

      Consoles are always the lowest common denominator. It’s like trying to sell a fancy meal to five year olds. They just want a Happy Meal.

  17. Tyrone Slothrop. says:

    Please be something new, please be something new

    • Phantoon says:

      I hope it’s more rehashed garbage that sells poorly. I don’t want them developing for the PC. I want them to go away forever.

      • Khemm says:

        That’s totally what we need, right? LESS companies creating games for PC. Try posting when you’re less drunk.

        • Phantoon says:

          Considering which company it is, yes.

          I don’t want them on the PC. I want better companies headed by smarter, better looking people like CDProjekt to be on the PC, and do well because of it.

          • RegisteredUser says:

            Much as I like your general acidic hatred of things, CD Project will forever be the people who sue folks instead of sell their product to me, so not a great example of the kind of people I want dominating the PC scene.

            I would rather have indies only and “crappy looking games” and start the whole thing over than have CD Projekt behavior be acceptable.

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          When the final product is shit, why does it matter?

    • Dreforian says:

      Well, maybe something so old we’ll think it’s new! I’m pulling for Radix: Way Beyond the Void
      It IS an Epic fps property!

  18. Andrigaar says:

    And it’s not Jazz Jackrabbit 3(D)? Damnit, Epic, WHY THE HELL NOT?

    You know you want to change your minds right now and make it. 2.5D sidescroller with tons of amazing particle and lighting effects… do it, man.

    • Skabooga says:

      Epic, you used to be so bright and colorful and full of sparkles. Like Jill of the Jungle! That game was a torrent of rainbow-colored pixels.

  19. PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

    Epic are a joke now just concentrate on UT4 middleware & leave the actual game content to people who understand the PC & do not moan/bitch about piracy everytime their crappy games get pirated like every other game does.

    Saying PC piracy on Bulletstorm stopped the sequel production is bullshit when GFWL stopped alll online piracy of that game by using SSA + mandatory online GFWL Profile’s. Epic just pull the PC piracy card out of their arses everytime a game fails to sell on PC.

    How can anyone take anything they say seriously when Gears Of War3 console patching was more important to Epic than porting to PC (not that GOW series is all that anyway buts its the principle that counts!).
    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2011/08/19/epic-explains-why-no-gears-of-war-3-pc/1

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      I hate to tell you this, but BulletStorm was pirated, and it was (and still is) available at P2P sites.

      You might want to double check your sources.

      • PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

        GFWL did a great job @ preventing piracy as it stops the Co-Op mode being played by people who do not own legit copies this was the real issue as Co-Op Anarchy mode was terrific fun & around 50 hours plus gameplay. GFWL did such a great job @ stopping piracy of online gameplay modes most retard pirates played the excellent but short SP campaign & never bothered to check out the Anarchy mode as it would have meant buying the game.

        They cannot win use a proven antipiracy DRM like GFWL+ SSA Keys + Mandatory Online GFWL Profile which is still 100% uncracked since Sept 2009 & protects the online gameplay modes from being played by non legit copies. Not every GFWL game uses this either but the ones which do are 100% piracy free for online gameplay modes.

        Most recent GFWL games do use this DRM so it limits pirates to offline gameplay only which on most recent games means a fraction of the content but it limits sales as few PC gamers are prepared to pay full price for games nowadays anyway most would rather torrent then when it hits a cheap digital sale buy if they enjoyed the torrent!

        Perhaps publishers should experiment with PC pricing & sell on release date @ 50% off as surely 50% of something is better than 100% of nothing!

  20. FionaSarah says:

    Your article image there just gave me a goddamn heart attack.

  21. The First Door says:

    I would love another Unreal Tournament as Epic seem to be one of the few companies who realised that some people just like playing over the top game modes with bots. I loved UT2004 and played it to death… but over a really long time, coming back to it whenever I just needed an hour or so of explosive fun.

    UT3, however, not so much.

  22. Turbobutts says:

    Admit that the PC port of Bulletstorm was crap. Blame piracy for poor PC sales nonetheless. Shelf the sequel. Start working on a PC exclusive.

    Epic Games, how does your logic work?

    • subedii says:

      Much like TwoFace’s coin it seems. The result is random, but somehow, never really seems to be good.

      EDIT: Much like everyone is saying, it’s likely going to be F2P.

      That’s the only reason they’d make it “PC exclusive” in the first place, you can’t really do those games console-side yet.

  23. frame says:

    Epic Games may be best known for the awesome Jazz Jackrabbit

    Uh, really? Sounds a bit unreal :)

  24. Lemming says:

    Is that Jazz Jackrabbit with Courtney Love in the picture?

  25. bit_crusherrr says:

    F2P UT game with COD gameplay.

  26. RegisteredUser says:

    I actually find it incredibly comforting that most comments here are echoing my exhaustion with the way both the PC and PC gaming has been treated.

    Btw I envy Mr Jackrabbit; going by the way the bunny gal looks she must be utterly bonkers in bed.

    • Unaco says:

      Nah… I’m betting she likes to f*ck, but loves to fight. Too much hassle.

      I agree with the concern about how the PC platform and PC are being treated, or have been treated, by Epic and a lot of other devs/publishers… But we should be careful – Some folk will drop by shortly to tell us to be realists, and be grateful we’re getting anything for the PC, etc, etc.

    • Flint says:

      That’s a guy, actually. Jazz’s brother Spaz.

      • Phantoon says:

        I don’t think that changes anything.

        In fact, are you implying there’s something wrong with being gay? Me and EA will have you know that we will use this controversy to gain a better PR image.

        I mean that we support gay rights, or something. I got hate mail five months ago from some crazy religious person, does that count? Actually it was a Jehovah’s Witness flyer, but that’s really the same thing.

      • RegisteredUser says:

        That’s what I get for my ignorance of not playing Jump-and-runs on a PC outside of Rick Dangerous.

  27. Flint says:

    Please be something singleplayer-y rather than just another free-to-play online FPS.

  28. kalirion says:

    Jazz Jackrabbit? Come on, Tyrian and One Must Fall 2097 were so much better (and now free!)

  29. Brun says:

    Just a question:

    What was everyone’s problem with UT3? I didn’t really have any issues with it other than the fact that it never really seemed to gain the popularity of UT2K4.

  30. menderslan says:

    No fair, I thought we were getting a new old-school Jazz Jackrabbit game. This made me realize how much I miss those games. And One Must Fall. That’s what I want: another Jazz Jackrabbit game and a new OMF game in the style of the old ones.

  31. Beelzebud says:

    I’ve seen a similar reaction on every site that has covered this.

    I don’t think Epic realizes how badly they’ve sold themselves to their former PC audience the past five years.

    Calling the people that helped build your company a bunch of thieves is a great way to lose dedicated fans. Personally I have retail boxes for Unreal, Unreal Tournament, UT 2003, UT2k4, Unreal 2, and UT3 sitting here on my gaming shelf. I bought Unreal the day it came out.

    I’m done with them. They can take their technology demo that they’re labeling a “PC only” game, and stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.

    • Daryl says:

      This is true. Epic has burned a lot of bridges since the UT3 debacle. That was the game that everyone in the UT community (both UT2004 and UT99 players) were waiting for because we all believed that Epic was finally going to listen to us. Instead, they made a bunch of bad decisions and released a beta-quality game that went up against Orange Box, COD4 and other heavy hitters. Then, when the game sold like crap, they blamed PC piracy and became a nearly console-exclusive developer. I can understand if they had just released a bad game and said “ok we’ll try harder next time”, but they had to take a bunch of jabs at the community that made them what they are.

      I personally won’t be spending my money on any Epic game at launch. Until I can see that it’s an actual, complete PC game with no traces of consolitis, I’ll be saving my money. UT3 was originally announced as a PC-exclusive title too. Didn’t turn out too well there.

  32. Xardas Kane says:

    Jazz Jackrabbit Online: Brawny Super Space Marine Deluxe. Because if Epic have taught is anything it’s that everything is better with gigantic muscular testosterone-infused space marines. And humanoid green rabbits.

  33. Suits says:

    Jazz Jackrabbit 2 was the shiz

  34. Etherealsteel says:

    Epic would have to make something pretty awesome for me to trust them. It seems as though that really the best way to absolutely combat piracy on the PC is with Cloud gaming, Free-to play or make it browser based.

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