Epic Games has announced that it will not be using Google Play to distribute Fortnite when it becomes available on the Android operating system.
Players will instead have to use a separate installer provided by Epic to download the game directly from the Fortnite website.
The move appears to be financially motivated, as Epic Games will not have to share the profits they make from in-game V-Bucks sales on Android with Google.
Speaking with gaming news outlet EuroGamer, Tim Sweeney, the founder of Fortnite, said that this decision helps the developers save nearly an extra 30 pct.
Avoiding the 30 per cent “store tax” is a part of Epic’s motivation. It’s a high cost in a world where game developers’ 70 per cent must cover all the cost of developing, operating, and supporting their games. And it’s disproportionate to the cost of the services these stores perform, such as payment processing, download bandwidth, and customer service. We’re intimately familiar with these costs from our experience operating Fortnite as a direct-to-customer service on PC and Mac.
Once Fortnite is released on Android, users will have to visit the Fortnite official website and download a special installer.
TouchArcade touched up on what the process will look like in their own conversation with Sweeney:
We were lucky enough to have Epic run us through a hands on with just how the install process works. Basically, players on Android devices will head to the Fortnite web site at which point you tap a button to download the Fortnite Installer .apk file. After that finishes, you launch the Fortnite Installer, which, unsurprisingly, installs Fortnite. The one really strange thing about this process that I think is going to cause loads of confusion is what you do next.
This is consistent with what Epic has done with Fortnite on PC and Mac, having bypassed Steam and used their own installer and launcher to deliver the game and its contents to players.
Sweeney mentioned that they would have done the same with iPhone users on the iOS, but Apple’s strict restrictions on third-party installers inhibited them from doing so.