Epic vs. Apple trial reveals Epic’s costs for its “Free” Games

Epic Games has been giving out free games in their store every week since December 2018. This was not redistricted to just smaller games but sometimes huge games like GTA 5 and the Arkham Series.

And I have always wondered how much this weekly giveaway was really worth it for the Store. Now we actually know the stats for the first 9 months of the giveaway from December 2018 to September 2019, all thanks to a document that was accidentally published early on the Epic v Apple lawsuit Box repository.


The Document reveals how much Epic has spent on each game depending on how many people have claimed it and more importantly for them, how many new users they have managed to lure in with the free games.

The first game released as part of the promotional giveaway was, Subnautica, which turned out to be one of the store’s most popular, with about 4.6 million Entitlements and seemingly getting about 800,000 new accounts. This is the biggest increase Epic has seen in the first year. This also had Epic spending of about $1.74 for every new account. This seems like a great promotional plan if we just consider this.

Games like Super meat boy, What remains of Edith Finch, Rime, For Honor, World of Goo, The Jackbox Party Pack, Fez, and Canary have been the most profitable for Epic as they all cost less than $1 per user. But the next big infusion of new players was when the Arkham series was Given way for free. The Series giveaway bought about 614,000 new users to the Store. and it ended up with Epic Spending about $2.44 per user.

Overall they have spent about $11.7 Million in the first 9 months while managing to lure in about a million new users while spending about $2.37 on each. But this being only for the first 9 months does not give us the full picture as there have been huge giveaways such as GTA 5 Crashed the Store when it Launched due to the huge amount of people claiming it at once.

GTA 5 Crashed the Store when it Launched due to the huge amount of people claiming it at once

All this information has been made public after the Epic Games v. Apple Lawsuit where Epic circumvented Apple’s App Store on the in-game sale of Fortnite currency, to avoid paying royalties it considers too high and undeserved by Apple, and this lead to Apple to block the game from the App Store and leading to Epic filing its lawsuit. Whatever might be the case it is the consumers who gain from this as Epic gives away free games every week.