The Daily Grind: Where do you stand on the Fortnite-vs.-PUBG feud?

    
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Ever since Bluehole threw down a gauntlet at Epic’s feet over the similarities between PUBG and Fortnite’s battle royale mode – or more specifically, over Epic’s conflicts in regard to the Unreal Engine it furbishes and on which both games run – I’ve noticed the mainstream narrative is about whether it’s “illegal to rip off” a game mode that’s existed for decades. I suspect MMO players may see it differently.

See, Bluehole isn’t some new studio to MMO players; it built TERA in Korea. It was also the studio that was sued civilly and prosecuted criminally (successfully) for ripping off NCsoft years ago. Multiple Bluehole employees were accused and convicted of stealing trade secrets, “copious amounts of confidential and proprietary NCsoft information, computer software, hardware, and artwork relating to Lineage 3” from NCsoft.

Moreover, MMO players have already seen how conflicts just like this one between studios and engine developers can absolutely sink games. At the end of 2015, the MMORPG sandbox community watched helplessly as it appeared the studio behind Hero Engine held The Repopulation studio hostage, ultimately forcing the game offline and then buying out the game from its original developers in what seemed an unwelcome, hostile takeover acceded to in desperation.

So with all that in mind, this morning’s Daily Grind is multifold: Where do you stand on the Fortnite-vs.-PUBG feud? Who’s in the right, legally and morally, and does it concern you for engine/game relationships in the future?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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Kty Shy

I stand nowhere, but I can’t help but be more sympathetic to the game that does not make you wait 7 days before playing after purchase. not that PUBG is bad per se, but it’s certainly unappealing to someone like me who values a more intimate quality, coop at the most, and there are many great games like that this year. The Battle Royale mode is the epitome of what I don’t care about.

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Jeremy Barnes

I just like that people think Epic just threw together the whole mode in 2-3 months.

PurpleCopper
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PurpleCopper

If this was a totally different company like Rockstar which made a “battle royale” mode for GTA, then I’d have no problem with it competing with PUBG.

But a business partner competing against you seems like a dick move, like what EPIC is doing right now.

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Sorenthaz

I think it’s shady as heck and is in line with most other things Epic’s been doing. Either way, one thing needs to be made clear: Epic Games today is not the same Epic Games that made Unreal Tournament, Gears of War, etc. That Epic Games is long gone, and the only similarity is the name and their dependence on the Unreal Engine to keep the company going. This Epic Games embraces F2P and some of the worst tactics pulled straight out of mobile games. So it would not be beyond them, I imagine, to race PUBG to the punch of releasing a long-awaited game type to consoles.

Especially since they only worked on this BR mode in Fortnite for 2-3 months, AFTER Bluehole had announced at E3 back in June that PUBG would come to Xbox One in late 2017. Epic Games is not only beating Bluehole to the punch, but directly screwing over the chances of PUBG’s initial success on the XB1 by making their BR portion F2P with a model that they claimed they would use for Fortnite’s PvE side (cosmetics/vanity only, no pay to progress/win BS), but didn’t.

This whole thing reeks of shade on Epic’s part, and even if they’re legally not doing anything wrong, they sure as hell are dancing around ethics/morals. Not that it matters much such since Tim Sweeney only cares about $$$ at this point, given how he responded to the Fortnite community about the issues with the systems that choke what could be an otherwise great PvE coop game.

Celestia
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Celestia

Could care less. Not my type of game.

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starbuck1771

Personally I think the feud is completely stupid as neither one is truly an original work and are just pieces of other games slapped together.

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zeko_rena

I don’t play either game and I don’t think I ever will, Pubg looks so boring, and Fornite from what I have seen is a huge cash shop.

But the whole thing sounds like a load of old bollocks that will likely end badly for all involved and will just waste time and money.

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Rohan Verghese

I think Epic is in clear legally. But it’s still a sketchy way to behave to a partner. They should have tried to avoid stepping on Bluehole’s toes.

Though it is pretty common behavior for large platforms. For example, if your company sells an item on Amazon, and it proves popular, Amazon will often commission a knock-off and start selling that directly.

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Sylkesh

Clearly, for me the only answer that comes to mind is: Elf Butts :D

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nobleeinherjar

I don’t really care about PUBG vs Fortnite. Neither company is entirely in the right. (You can really stop reading here for the short answer. Everything I typed out after this is either barely tangential or off topic.)

But I find it funny that Fortnite threw its battle royale mode together while some of its PvE assets aren’t even finished. People who invested in Fortnite did so, I imagine, because of its co-op, base-building gameplay.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am somewhat biased against Fortnite because of how it’s handled its Early Access label. (I have beef with PUBG, too, though, so it’s not like they get off scot-free in my eyes.) But in terms of one game versus the other, I don’t really care.

The simple fact is that PUBG is the new hotness, so a lot of devs are gonna try to cash in on that craze. I’m sure there will be standouts, like the very tiny handful of crafting games that managed to distinguish themselves from Minecraft. But .. eh, I’m getting off topic.