Ooblets Will Be an Epic Games Store Exclusive on PC and the Devs Hope You Can Be Excited About It, Too
The charming ‘life simulation’ game Ooblets, which was a part of our ‘Most Anticipated Indie Games of 2019‘ selection, will be an Epic Games Store exclusive on PC for ‘quite some time’, as the developers at Glumberland announced today. The game is still expected to launch on the Xbox One console, too.
The blog post dives in with refreshing honesty into this choice. While other developers have adopted a defensive stance in the past, the folks at Glumberland have bravely decided to point out the obvious benefits for an indie team as small as theirs as well as the minimal hassles for the players.
This is exactly what Marx warned us about!
Just imagine if other companies got it in their head to offer funding in exchange for exclusives. What’d be next? Game consoles paying for games to be exclusive on their consoles? Netflix paying for exclusive shows? Newspapers paying for exclusive articles? It’d be some sort of late capitalist dystopia.
Okay so goofing aside, yes, we’ve signed with Epic for PC launch exclusivity. It’s incredible news for us and I’m hoping you all can be excited about it, too.
What it means for you:
- You’ll have to install EGS if you wanna buy Ooblets on PC. I know that’s asking a lot but I believe in you and your ability to download a free thing and create a user account (if you haven’t already done so to play Fortnite which I KNOW YOU HAVE).
Why’d we do this?
So we had a big decision to make, and we didn’t take it lightly.
Because Epic doesn’t yet have the same market share as their competitors, they offered us a minimum guarantee on sales that would match what we’d be wanting to earn if we were just selling Ooblets across all the stores. That takes a huge burden of uncertainty off of us because now we know that no matter what, the game won’t fail and we won’t be forced to move back in with our parents (but we do love and appreciate you, parents!).
Now we can just focus on making the game without worrying about keeping the lights on. The upfront money they’re providing means we’ll be able to afford more help and resources to start ramping up production and doing some cooler things.
We’re aware of the backlash that’s been hitting games that sign with Epic. I don’t expect much of our uniquely-lovely community to fit into this weird anti-Epic contingent, but I figured I’d share our thoughts and have an open conversation about the issues.
I’ve read through all the arguments against Epic and they all basically come down to a couple core issues:
“EGS doesn’t have as many features as other stores”
As a user of both Steam and EGS myself, I haven’t had any issues with using EGS to buy and play games personally. But regarding the features that are still missing, that’s just sorta the way software is developed. Things take a lot longer to develop properly than people tend to realize and nobody comes to market with perfect software.
I remember waaay back when I plopped the disc for Half Life 2 into my PC for the first time and was forced to install this new thing called Steam. It was a barely-functional mess back then, as anyone who used it from that time period can tell you. It’s had like 15 years to improve. If it wasn’t worthwhile to improve, it wouldn’t have been and you wouldn’t still be using it.
I’m sure there’s a team of folks working on launcher features for EGS, but their work depends on the platform being worthwhile from a market-share perspective to keep going.
“It’s anti-consumer to have exclusives”
This is the most common complaint about Epic, but I don’t think people have really thought it through.
I can understand the frustration of having to buy different consoles to play the games you want, but there’s no extra cost to use EGS. The store and launcher just require a free signup. It’s not like having to pay for HBO and Netflix and Hulu to watch all the shows you want, it’s more like just having to press a button on your remote to change between free TV channels.
It’s also really disappointing to see folks threatening to pirate a game just because they can’t get it on the game launcher they’re used to. Feeling like you’re owed the product of other people’s work on your terms or else you’ll steal it is the epitome of that word “entitlement” that people use to discuss immature, toxic gamers.
I get the appeal of wanting to seek out things to get angry about. Venting anger is cathartic and natural, but let’s have just a little perspective about what we decide to get angry about. Look at the things going on around you and ask yourself if there might be anything just a tad more worthwhile to be upset about.
Here are just a few suggestions:
- Climate change
- Human rights abuses
- The new Twitter desktop UI
- The last season of Game of Thrones
(Those last two were jokes, please don’t yell at people about them)
Ooblets doesn’t have a release date yet. Glumberland described it as Harvest Moon, Animal Crossing and Pokémon mashed together, which makes sense given the official feature list below.
- Live a simple life working the land (and collecting magical creatures)
- Customize your character’s clothing, hairstyle, and house
- Take part in a bustling little town full of characters
- Explore a variety of locations across Oob, all with their own biomes, plants, characters, and unique ooblets
- Upgrade your dudes because I guess they’re not good enough for you
- Join an Ooblet club. Feel wanted and appreciated. Distrust other clubs’ members.
- Collect stuff like seeds, items, furniture, machinery, and friends