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Fornite Will Be Out in 2017, Says Tim Sweeney

Since a technical test back in 2015, we haven't heard much about Fortnite, Epic's take on both tower-defense shooters and Minecraft. At this year's Game Developers Conference, we finally got something: a release year.

As PC Gamer reports, Epic Games co-founder Tim Sweeney mentioned the game would be out "in the year ahead." The comment was dropped somewhat offhandedly, but a representative confirmed to PC Gamer that 2017 was in fact the correct date for the game.

[Source: PC Gamer]

 

Our Take
I'll believe it when I see it. 

For a refresher on Fortnite, check out our cover story from a couple of years ago.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

For Tim Sweeney, advancing Epic means racing into AR and VR

Epic Games chief Tim Sweeney sits down with Gamasutra in a wide-ranging conversation about everything from the Unreal Engine’s future focus on AR and VR to his own passion for land conservation. …


Gamasutra News

Epic Games Founder Tim Sweeney To Receive GDC Lifetime Achievement Award

Each year, the GDC Choice Awards recognizes the achievements of developers in the video game industry. This year marks the 17th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards, and the GDC advisory committee has chosen to honor the pioneering work of developer Tim Sweeney.

Not only did Tim Sweeney found Epic Games, he is also the creator of ZZT, one of the earliest games to allow for user-created worlds. After founding Epic MegaGames in 1991, Sweeney served as the company’s CEO and helped the company develop games like Unreal, Gears of War, and the Unreal Engine, which went on to power blockbuster titles like BioShock, Assassin’s Creed, and Batman: Arkham Asylum.

The Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony Wednesday, March 1 from 6:30-8:30pm PST. Stay tuned for move coverage of the show from Game Informer.

 

Our Take
Sweeney is in good company. Previous Lifetime Achievement Award recipients includes Todd Howard, Shigeru Miyamoto, Warren Spector, John Carmack, Hideo Kojima, and Sid Meier among others. Sweeney works has clearly effected the industry, so he deserves the recognition.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Tim Sweeney: Closed VR platforms are ‘sending the wrong message’

Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney has put forward a passionate case for a virtual reality industry that’s open and cooperative.  …


Gamasutra News

Epic Founder Tim Sweeney Pays To Protect 7,000 Acres In North Carolina

Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney has paid over $ 15 million to protect 7,000 acres in his home state of North Carolina where Epic Games is located.

The area is known as Box Creek Wilderness, and Sweeney is donating the land to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a conservation easement in order to prevent it from being developed on or subdivided.

Sweeney had previously fought the Rutherford Electric Membership Corporation over the land; the company wanted to put power lines through it.

[Source: Citizen-Times via Gamasutra]

 

Our Take
According to the Citizen-Times, the area has rare plant and wildlife species, including some that were new to scientists. Thanks, Tim, for your conservation efforts.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Epic’s Tim Sweeney has faith in Project Scorpio and Playstation Neo

The longtime Epic Games CEO says that these new consoles will solve old problems for game developers, though he still has concerns on how Microsoft will be approaching game development for Windows 10. …


Gamasutra News

Epic’s Sweeney just wants to sell Unreal Engine, as Amazon, Unity move to services

Unity has added analytics and advertisements, and Amazon’s Lumberyard is free but tightly integrated with Amazon Web Services. Epic’s Tim Sweeney says his company will focus on the engine. …


Gamasutra News

Epic’s Tim Sweeney Doubles Down On UWP Criticism, Challenges Apple To Open iOS Platform

Last week Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney wrote a scathing editorial about Micosoft's UWP initiative, calling it a thinly veiled attempt to monopolize the Windows ecosystem. Given Epic's close past with Microsoft, working on both the Gears of War series and operating as a sounding board for the development of Xbox technology, I asked him if he voiced his concerns with Microsoft before he took his gripes public.

"We've been following UWP for a long time," he says. "The idea of running apps in a more sandboxed way that makes installing new apps safer, borrowing techniques from the iOS app store and elsewhere to create a next generation safer Windows environment. I've always been concerned that it will be tied to an effort to close Windows as an open platform. With Windows 8 and the initial release of Windows 10 it was certainly a closed format.

"Microsoft has since then taken some half-steps to open it up further, but we've been talking with them confidentially for about 18 months expressing concerns and having really good, engaged discussions about whether or not there is a solution, but here we are. What really initiated this was Microsoft's marketing launch of a bunch of games built on UWP, which drew a lot of attention to it. I felt personally that the other side of the story needed to be told so developers and publishers are aware of the danger that lies in Microsoft giving itself the keys to lock down the Windows ecosystem if we all moved to that format. I wrote the editorial to really point out the dangers and to suggest a path forward that averts those dangers. If Microsoft opens it up, that will be a great step forward for Windows gaming. It will keep the benefits of Windows' open ecosystem and also respect the existing developer and publisher and customer relationships."

Citing the ease of a user finding an application via a web browser, clicking on it, and installing it as many do on Mac and Win 32 platforms, Sweeney points out that when both Windows 8 and 10 launched the only way that users could download UWP apps was via Microsoft's store. While they force patches some hot fixes, Sweeney says finding a workaround to letting users install these UWP apps is needlessly complicated and betrays the original vision for the operating system.

I then asked Sweeney what separates this UWP initiative from the iOS, a closed platform that Apple has operated for some time. Epic is no stranger to the App Store, having appeared during Apple press conferences numerous times to showcase games like Infinity Blade. 

"Windows has been an open platform all along," he says. "Windows has a far more vibrant app ecosystem than iOS. If you look at it, something like 90 percent of apps sold are fairly shallow, fun games, but they are all very limited entertainment experiences. Whereas Windows spans everything from extremely rich game experiences – some of the best games in the world are exclusive to Windows like League of Legends or World of Warcraft [sic] – all the way up to AutoCAD, industrial design software, Microsoft Office [sic]. It's a huge platform that supplies not only a need for simple apps on your mobile devices, but the world runs on Windows. It has to remain open or else it's a serious threat to world commerce. Windows is exceptional in that way. "

So would Sweeney prefer that Apple adopt an unlocked platform as well?

"We have to be honest and say that Apple kind of got a free pass by creating an awesome device, and then adding support for apps through a store," he says. "Because it started out as really nice, strong ecosystem they were able to grow that platform to a billion users. But if you stand back and look at it from a fresh perspective, I find it very questionable that any billion user ecosystem is a closed ecosystem and does not support third party open installation of apps from other sources and open commerce through sources other than Apple. That seems like something that Apple should revisit some point in the future. If we recognized from the beginning that it would be a billion user ecosystem, we probably all would have had a different view of it."

This story was originally posted on March 16, 2016 at 06:33 PM.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Epic’s Tim Sweeney Doubles Down On UWP Criticism, Challenges Apple To Open iOS Platform

Last week Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney wrote a scathing editorial about Micosoft's UWP initiative, calling it a thinly veiled attempt to monopolize the Windows ecosystem. Given Epic's close past with Microsoft, working on both the Gears of War series and operating as a sounding board for the development of Xbox technology, I asked him if he voiced his concerns with Microsoft before he took his gripes public.

"We've been following UWP for a long time," he says. "The idea of running apps in a more sandboxed way that makes installing new apps safer, borrowing techniques from the iOS app store and elsewhere to create a next generation safer Windows environment. I've always been concerned that it will be tied to an effort to close Windows as an open platform. With Windows 8 and the initial release of Windows 10 it was certainly a closed format.

"Microsoft has since then taken some half-steps to open it up further, but we've been talking with them confidentially for about 18 months expressing concerns and having really good, engaged discussions about whether or not there is a solution, but here we are. What really initiated this was Microsoft's marketing launch of a bunch of games built on UWP, which drew a lot of attention to it. I felt personally that the other side of the story needed to be told so developers and publishers are aware of the danger that lies in Microsoft giving itself the keys to lock down the Windows ecosystem if we all moved to that format. I wrote the editorial to really point out the dangers and to suggest a path forward that averts those dangers. If Microsoft opens it up, that will be a great step forward for Windows gaming. It will keep the benefits of Windows' open ecosystem and also respect the existing developer and publisher and customer relationships."

Citing the ease of a user finding an application via a web browser, clicking on it, and installing it as many do on Mac and Win 32 platforms, Sweeney points out that when both Windows 8 and 10 launched the only way that users could download UWP apps was via Microsoft's store. While they force patches some hot fixes, Sweeney says finding a workaround to letting users install these UWP apps is needlessly complicated and betrays the original vision for the operating system.

I then asked Sweeney what separates this UWP initiative from the iOS, a closed platform that Apple has operated for some time. Epic is no stranger to the App Store, having appeared during Apple press conferences numerous times to showcase games like Infinity Blade. 

"Windows has been an open platform all along," he says. "Windows has a far more vibrant app ecosystem than iOS. If you look at it, something like 90 percent of apps sold are fairly shallow, fun games, but they are all very limited entertainment experiences. Whereas Windows spans everything from extremely rich game experiences – some of the best games in the world are exclusive to Windows like League of Legends or World of Warcraft [sic] – all the way up to AutoCAD, industrial design software, Microsoft Office [sic]. It's a huge platform that supplies not only a need for simple apps on your mobile devices, but the world runs on Windows. It has to remain open or else it's a serious threat to world commerce. Windows is exceptional in that way. "

So would Sweeney prefer that Apple adopt an unlocked platform as well?

"We have to be honest and say that Apple kind of got a free pass by creating an awesome device, and then adding support for apps through a store," he says. "Because it started out as really nice, strong ecosystem they were able to grow that platform to a billion users. But if you stand back and look at it from a fresh perspective, I find it very questionable that any billion user ecosystem is a closed ecosystem and does not support third party open installation of apps from other sources and open commerce through sources other than Apple. That seems like something that Apple should revisit some point in the future. If we recognized from the beginning that it would be a billion user ecosystem, we probably all would have had a different view of it."

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Epic’s Sweeney: Studios need to react to the changing industry to survive

The game companies that react early to the constantly changing industry are the ones that come out the other end as survivors, says Epic’s Tim Sweeney. …


Gamasutra News