Epic court documents reveal the billions Fortnite generates, how much it paid for store giveaways
The Arkham games were Epic's most expensive purchaseBy Rob Thubron 17 comments
Why it matters: It's no secret that Fortnite brings in a lot of money for Epic Games, but the exact amount of revenue it generates hasn't been revealed---until now. The Apple vs. Epic legal battle has seen the release of a financial presentation from the latter, which shows that the battle royal title made more than $9 billion over two years.
Epic's document reveals some of the financial details of the private company. It shows that Fortnite generated a total of $9.17 billion in revenue across 2018 and 2019.
In 2018 alone, Fortnite's revenue was $5.48 billion, thanks to its 66.6 million monthly users. Those figures were down slightly to $3.71 billion and 65.1 million users in 2019. It was expected to make another $2.8 billion in 2020, despite a predicted further decline in the number of monthly players.
Fortnite is by far the biggest money-maker for Epic. Its other games made a combined $108 million during the same two-year period, while the Unreal Engine brought in $221 million. The Epic Games Store, meanwhile, generated $235 million across 2018 and 2019.
Courtesy of The Verge
Sticking with the Epic Games Store, we now know how much the company paid for some of the free games it offered: $11.6 million. In addition to revealing the amounts each individual license cost, the document also shows how many new users they attracted.
The Batman Arkham games were the most expensive giveaway for Epic, though the $1.5 million was probably worth the 613,912 new Epic accounts. Subnautica had the second-highest cost at $1.4 million. The underwater survival game led to the highest number of new Epic Games Store users for the time period: 804,052. That works out at $1.70 for every new user.
Epic handed over $50,000 or less for several games---Super Meat Boy, World of Goo, Canary, RIME---and paid nothing at all for Metro 2033 Redux. Sadly, there's no information on GTA V as it was a free offering outside of the time period. When given away in 2020, it proved so popular that it crashed the service.
After expenses, Epic made more than $5.6 billion in gross profit during the two years. For comparison, Apple's gross profit for fiscal years ending September 2016 to 2020 averaged $95.527 billion, illustrating how this case might be less "David vs. Goliath" and more "Goliath vs. an even bigger Goliath."