Bloomberg Law
Aug. 19, 2020, 9:00 AM

Epic’s Battle With Apple and Google Has Roots in the Pac-Man Era

Takashi Mochizuki
Vlad Savov
Vlad Savov
Bloomberg News

Epic Games Inc. is out to prove it’s worthy of its name. It’s in a massive fight with Apple Inc. and Google over the 30% cut that both companies take from game revenues on their platforms. Epic contends that the fee is both outdated and unfair. The revenue split has its roots in 1980s Japan and the era of chunky cartridges and primitive consoles. Now it’s being questioned by game makers such as Epic across the global developer community.

The so-called platform “tax” dictates the distribution of vast sums of money. Epic’s own Fortnite is estimated to generate in excess ...