Epic urged Microsoft to open its Xbox network for free multiplayer games just weeks before Apple and Fortnite battle. In the weeks leading up to Epic Games’ decision to circumvent Apple’s 30 percent cut Fortnite In-app purchases, CEO Tim Sweeney sent an email to Xbox boss Phil Spencer, annoying something big and asking if Microsoft could free up time for multiplayer with Fortnite season 14.
“Epic has certain plans for August that will provide an exceptional opportunity to highlight the valuable offer of consoles and personal computers, as opposed to mobile platforms, as well as for new console users,”
Sweeney also asked Spencer if free multiplayer for Xbox Live was coming and if Microsoft could determine it in time. Fortnite season 14, the Epic Games season launched its alternative payment method, which it received Fortnite launches the App Store.
Spencer said that “we will get there and I want to partner with you” and that the implementation of these rules is “at the highest levels” at Microsoft, but hints that Xbox Live is not yet ready to release free multiplayer. “Completely understood!” Sweeney replied. “I think a lot is happening at Microsoft today. Anyway, you will enjoy the upcoming fireworks show. “
The timing of the email is provocative, given the events that followed. If Spencer agrees to the plan, it looks likely Xbox opened Fortnite to non-Gold subscribers at the same time as Apple shut down the game altogether.
The fireworks show that Sweeney promised certainly started when Fortnite Season 14 kicked off, and since then Epic Games has sued Apple. Microsoft eventually unlocked the Xbox Live free multiplayer game last month, but it wasn’t as simple as Epic Games had hoped.
Microsoft’s removal of the Xbox Live Gold requirement came after the company was forced to reverse the price increase to its Xbox Live Gold subscriptions earlier this year. Microsoft tried to double the price of the annual subscription to Xbox Live Gold, a move that went wrong. Microsoft quickly reversed the decision and proposed removing the paid wall for free multiplayer games.