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Epic Games rewards Fortnite creators with payouts based on time played

Bynewsmagzines

Jun 1, 2023
Epic Games rewards Fortnite creators with payouts based on time played


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Epic Games announced that it will change its payouts for Fortnite creators by rewarding them with money based on the amount of time their games are played.

This “time played” payout should result in more money for Fortnite creators in the upcoming April payout, said Sax Persson, executive vice president of Epic Games, in an interview with GamesBeat.

In the past, creators of Fortnite islands (which include both individuals and teams of developers) were rewarded if players visited their islands. But now Epic is making changes to the engagement payout metrics based on rewards for time played on the creators’ islands.

Back in March at the Game Developers Conference, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney announced that Epic would give 40% of the net revenue of Fortnite to all creators who publish islands in Fortnite, including both independent creators and Epic’s own Fortnite development team.

When Epic Games announced Creator Academy 2.0, the company was focused on rewarding creators based on the value they brought to Fortnite, Persson said. And the company became more transparent about how it calculated its payments.

After the first month, the company realized that it should also reward creators based on the time spent in the game metric, he said. And to help grow the pie, Epic wants to provide tools for creators to improve acquisition of users. But more important is the notion that players like the creations enough to spend a lot of time playing with them, Persson said.

“We used monthly active users, returning users and new users,” Persson said. “We didn’t use time before. This is the most easy to understand way to drive their own success. Time spent is a good solid way for creators to measure how their islands are doing.”

In addition to the new metric, Epic Games will continue to measure Island performance based on player
popularity and retention metrics as outlined in a March Creator Academy 2.0 blog post. Epic Games decided to lower the weighting of these metrics in engagement payouts for now, and it is boosting the new “time played” metric.

Successful Fortnite creators are likely to make more money this year.

Epic Games expects to rebalance the metrics on user acquisition and retention over time as it adds new features like persistence and analytics which give creators more tools for retention and user acquisition.

The team is building features that make it easy to promote islands outside of the Fortnite ecosystem as well as better analytics about user acquisition in Creator Portal. The company is also working on additional game tools and devices to build persistence into creator-made games, a key feature for bringing players back to Islands.

March and April recap

For the vast majority of creators, their first March engagement payout was a significant increase when compared to prior earnings in Epic’s Support-A-Creator program. The top 1,000 island creators saw a 5.2 times median increase in earnings through engagement payouts over Support-A-Creator in March.

April’s upcoming engagement payouts (paid starting May 30) will reflect the new changes to the payout formula and will result in an increase of 1.45 times more total money paid to creators when compared to March, Persson said.

When annualized with the new April weighting in place, more than 200 creators would earn more than $100,000 per year through engagement payouts.

Since launching the Unreal Editor for Fortnite (UEFN) alongside engagement payouts in March, new and emerging game genres from creators are becoming popular with Fortnite players.

In contrast to other games like Roblox, Epic Games intends to grow its ecosystem with a very simple formula that creators are paid and rewarded based on the fun they generate for players, not from just purchases in the game. The goal is to incentivize creators to make quality games.

“We think it’s a differentiator, from a creative perspective, allowing you to focus on just the design of your map, rather than monetization,” Persson said.

Below is a look at the top 10 most popular categories of games built with UEFN so far, as well as the top 10 overall creator-made genres in Fortnite right now. The top UEFN genres by concurrent players are:

  • Free For All
  • Team Deathmatch
  • Gun Game
  • Horror
  • Zombies
  • Lucky Block
  • Practice
  • Vehicles
  • Base Battle
  • Prop Hunt

Top 10 Overall Genres By CCU (excluding Epic-produced islands)

  • Practice
  • Team Deathmatch
  • Free For All
  • Zombies
  • Base Battle
  • Horror
  • Lucky Block
  • Battle Royale
  • Prop Hunt
  • Runner

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