Epic Games just announced that its Epic Online Services SDK is now free to all game developers. The Fortnite developer made several major announcements today, also revealing PS5 gameplay in an Unreal Engine 5 tech demo.
The official Epic Online Services site explains that it supports a range of multiplayer and community features.
From player identity and friends, cross-play, and achievements, these services empower you to create the best experiences for players with complete freedom of engine, store, and platform integration choice
The SDK is supported on “every major platform and account system,” allowing developers to offer cross-play across PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and more. The game doesn’t need to use the Epic Games Store or Unreal Engine, says Epic Games. But this expression of generosity could well get developers to use Epic’s other products.
Epic also announced that it would no longer take royalties on games developed with Unreal Engine 4, up to $1 million. This may be another part of their generosity plan.
The Epic Online Services announcement could allow PS5 and Xbox Series X game developers to go big on cross-play. The new consoles are expected to have cross-generation games, which are also available on PS4 and Xbox One, for some time. This is part of Microsoft’s confirmed Xbox Series X exclusives plan.
Epic Games itself has confirmed plans to make Fortnite a PS5 and Xbox Series X launch title. It will be using its Epic Online Services to support cross-play and cross-progression in the game. It’s time to get excited.