Epic Games

Fortnite v19.10 update brings back Tilted Towers, introduces giant Klombos

Fortnite v19.10 update brings back Tilted Towers, introduces giant Klombos

Fortnite was updated to version 19.10 today, and it seems this patch is a big one. Not only does this update add giant, scaleable beasts called Klombos to the game, but we're also seeing the return of a fan-favorite point-of-interest with Tilted Towers. Yes, it seems the rumors were true and Tilted Towers is returning, so get ready for that to be a popular drop location once more.

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Fortnite on iPhone is back thanks to NVIDIA GeForce NOW

Fortnite on iPhone is back thanks to NVIDIA GeForce NOW

Although Epic Games has long bemoaned the state of affairs on app stores, particularly the Apple App Store, it was Fortnite's banishment from iOS that became the metaphorical straw that broke the camel's back. This event gave rise to a number of lawsuits not just in the US but also around the world, challenging the legality of Apple's App Store practices. The battle is far from over despite existing judgments, and Fortnite remains officially absent from iOS. Amid all of this, NVIDIA's GeForce NOW streaming platform will bring the battle royale game back to the iPhone and iPad in an indirect way.

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Fortnite 19.01 brings tornadoes to the island: What players should know

Fortnite 19.01 brings tornadoes to the island: What players should know

A new Fortnite update landed today, and while it may be somewhat small in scope, the new features it adds are big ones. That's true literally and figuratively, as Fortnite version 19.01 adds tornadoes and lightning storms to the game. However, contrary to what you might think, these aren't necessarily disasters to be avoided, but rather tools to be utilized.

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Fortnite is down and its servers are offline: What we know so far

Fortnite is down and its servers are offline: What we know so far

Epic's hit battle royale game Fortnite is experiencing a major outage at a very inconvenient time: when most kids are out of school and looking to use the new skins they got for Christmas. The problem, which Epic is still investigating at this time, seems to be a very large one, as players are unable to log in to their accounts and the game servers have been taken offline.

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Fortnite Winterfest returns with Tom Holland’s Spider-Man and a ton of holiday cosmetics

Fortnite Winterfest returns with Tom Holland’s Spider-Man and a ton of holiday cosmetics

With the holidays quickly approaching, a large number of free-to-play and live service titles are rolling out their winter events. Fortnite is the latest game to do so, announcing the return of Fortnite Winterfest today. Winterfest gives players a chance to unlock special winter and holiday-themed cosmetics, while the Fortnite shop will also be hosting new outfits to tie in with Spider-Man: No Way Home.

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Alan Wake is finally getting a sequel after a decade of waiting

Alan Wake is finally getting a sequel after a decade of waiting

Only a few months after releasing its major Alan Wake remaster, Remedy Entertainment is back with a similarly major announcement: the classic title is getting a sequel and it'll be hitting shelves in 2023. According to Remedy's Creative Director Sam Lake, the team had already been planning to create a sequel when working on the first game -- and though more than a decade has passed since the title's release, that sequel is finally in the pipeline.

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Game-changing Apple legal ruling delayed at last minute

Game-changing Apple legal ruling delayed at last minute

Back in September, we finally saw something resembling a conclusion to the lengthy court battle between Apple and Epic. Apple largely came out on top with that one, as the court ruled in Apple's favor with one big exception: the court ruled that Apple must allow app developers to offer external payments in their games and apps. Now, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has reversed that decision, delaying the implementation of this ruling until a future date.

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Fortnite Chapter 3 Season 1 Map and Battle Pass details spin with Spider-Man

Fortnite Chapter 3 Season 1 Map and Battle Pass details spin with Spider-Man

With Fortnite's climactic showdown with the Cube Queen now over, the game has undergone a rather dramatic change in the transition to Chapter 3. Of course, we wouldn't expect anything less when the transition from Chapter 1 to Chapter 2 brought similarly massive change. This time around, the map has been flipped upside down, giving players a whole new island to explore.

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Fortnite Chapter 2 ‘The End’ event details: Everything you need to know

Fortnite Chapter 2 ‘The End’ event details: Everything you need to know

Few things in Fortnite are more exciting than the start of a new season, which makes this weekend doubly exciting: it'll kick off the game's Chapter 2 finale called "The End." Players are invited to participate in the event, and though Epic has kept its plans under wraps, some big changes are all but guaranteed.

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Apple could turn Epic Games’ app tax victory into unexpected defeat

Apple could turn Epic Games’ app tax victory into unexpected defeat

For years, developers and platform makers have been waging an almost silent war over how much each can really take out of every successful purchase or subscription. That struggle was brought to light recently when Epic Games not only publicly questioned the status quo but even dared to sue giants like Apple and Google. The repercussions of those lawsuits have so far gone in favor of developers and publishers, pushing app stores to make changes to the way they do business. Apple, however, may have found a loophole that would allow it to still tax developers even if they don't use its App Store payment system.

The 70/30 Rule

Few probably remember now when or where it started, but it has become an almost de facto standard that sellers take only 70% of profits while distribution platforms take a 30% commission. That practice may have become notorious on Apple App Store and Google Play Store, but that practice has been used by many stores, both digital and physical. Most of the digital games distribution channels like Steam use it but so do physical stores like Walmart.

It has been common practice for stores to impose some tax on owners selling their products through those channels, and it makes the most sense in the context of a brick-and-mortar store. App store owners like Apple and Google also justify the cut they get by saying how it goes into improving the store platform, usually by developing stronger security measures. Not everyone, however, buys those excuses.

Epic Games, for one, has cast doubt on any innovation Google makes for the Play Store to justify its 30% share. More importantly, the famed game developer and publisher calls into question the almost arbitrary restriction that Apple places on apps distributed on its App Store. In a nutshell, all the apps there have to use Apple's first-party payment system, which also means agreeing to that 70/30 split. Given it's nearly impossible to install apps on iPhones outside of that App Store, Epic Games has argued that this requirement is, in fact, illegal.

The Verdict

Epic Games' stance found victory both in courts of law and the court of public opinion. Indirectly, it has caused many companies to review and even change their policies. Microsoft, for example, pretty much made its own Store completely open and has waived many of the restrictions developers would encounter on Steam, the App Store, and the Google Play Store.

In some territories like South Korea, Google and Apple are being legally compelled to allow third-party payment systems in apps distributed through their stores. While Apple is still appealing that new law, Google has already accepted it, but with some caveats that we'll see later.

For its part, Apple has been making changes, like offering different tiers with lower taxes depending on what's being distributed or how much an app is making. One of its biggest changes is to allow apps to link to an external site when signing up for a subscription, and soon, it will also be required to allow linking to external payment systems. It's not a clear win for developers and publishers, however, and Apple might still have the last laugh.

The Loophole

9to5Mac reports that Apple might still be getting a commission out of payments made outside of the App Store, as long as the link to the external payment system comes from an app that was installed through the App Store. That, in effect, means all the apps that are installed on iPhones and iPads.

This pretty much circumvents the spirit of Epic Games' lawsuit as well as the rulings that are being imposed against Apple. The reason why developers would want to give up the convenience of Apple Pay or Google Pay for in-app purchases is to escape that tax in the first place. The filing indicates that Apple doesn't see things the same way, at least legally speaking.

It isn't the only one either, as Google already revealed something similar last month, where it said it would take only 11% or 26% of profits when a third-party payment processor is used. The Android maker presents a list of justifications for this policy, and Apple will most likely use the same tactic if questioned. South Korean regulators are still investigating whether this is legally sound, and you can bet that Apple's injunction will be met with intense scrutiny as well.

Epic’s latest Fortnite teaser all but confirms entirely new Chapter 3 map

Epic’s latest Fortnite teaser all but confirms entirely new Chapter 3 map

Epic Games has kicked off Black Friday by dropping a new Fortnite Chapter 3 teaser, one that all but confirms players will, indeed, drop onto an entirely new map once the current season ends. Rumors about the new map have been circulating for a while, but the first real indication came from Epic itself with the Chapter 3 announcement.

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Fortnite Season 8 The End date and countdown leading to Chapter 3

Fortnite Season 8 The End date and countdown leading to Chapter 3

After months of working through the various Seasons in Fortnite Chapter 2, it looks like everything is about to come to an end. Epic Games has confirmed that Season 8 will be the last one for Chapter 2, so when that ends, so too will the whole Chapter. Presumably, we're going to see a massive change to Fortnite's map in the transition to Chapter 3, but what those changes haven't been revealed yet.

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