Some headlines are flying around today noting that Epic Games, the company behind monolithic industry software like Fortnite and the Unreal Engine, is losing a significant amount of money on the Epic Games Store. That’s interesting for sure, but I think it buries the lede a bit.
This information (and more) came from a court document submitted by Apple’s legal rep hilariously proposing that Epic Games really sucks and that’s why Apple should win the court case. Essentially.
Apple Submits Court Document Equivalent to Diss Track Against Epic Games
The document is a “Proposed Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law” package. You can read it yourself by clicking this sentence. What that means is that if Apple wins the upcoming lawsuit against Epic Games (set for early May), this is what Apple’s lawyer(s) wants to see as the official post-case record.
Regardless of who wins, eventually a final version of this package will be accepted and used as reference in case the matter goes to appeals and such.
Anyway, what this document also does, perhaps unwittingly, is show us the often hilarious, one-sided framing of the whole case found in these proposals.
Even the table of contents looks like Apple’s legal team glowing itself up before dunking on Epic’s entire business model, finding every possible angle to make itself look like bastions of techno-social progress and Epic like the wackest Mickey Mouse operation in videogames.
Some of my favorite headlines from this document include:
- The App Store Upended the Status Quo
- CONSUMERS AND DEVELOPERS HAVE BENEFITTED FROM APPLE’S CONTINUOUS INVESTMENT AND INNOVATION
- AFTER MANY YEARS PROFITING FROM ITS RELATIONSHIP WITH APPLE, EPIC FLAGRANTLY BREACHES ITS AGREEMENTS
- Epic Games Store is Unprofitable and Not Comparable to the App Store
- Epic Sues and Declares War on Apple
- THE APP STORE BUSINESS MODEL IS BUTTRESSED BY OVERWHELMING PROCOMPETITIVE JUSTIFICATIONS
- THERE IS NO EQUALLY EFFICIENT ALTERNATIVE TO IAP
The all-caps lines are lifted directly from the document, and I believe keeping the caps enhances the reading experience here. If you read the document further the language gets a bit more professional, as most of the context is supported by various citations.
For example, the stuff about Epic Games Store being unprofitable is kind of a disingenuous argument, but there are facts and data cited.
That said, there are other fun moments throughout the proposal including language you wouldn’t expect to see in legal documentation such as “tweetstorms,” and citations of Reddit comments angry about Epic Games Store policies. It’s wild stuff.
If you jump down to the bottom of the document, you can also see Apple’s proposed language for both the conclusions of the case, as well as the “remedies,” including compensation to Apple from Epic for perceived damages associated with the case and a proposed alternative source of damages “even if Epic were entitled to the equitable relief it seeks.”
That alternative damages number is pretty huge, by the way. These are some big swings!
As an article on Gamesindustry.biz notes, the next chapter of this story will unfold when the antitrust case between Epic and Apple continues on May 3, 2021. Until then, we have Apple’s legal fanfiction here to enjoy.