Microsoft's Executive Vice President of Gaming Phil Spencer issued a statement on Twitter declaring a desire for ongoing support for Unreal Engine within the Apple ecosystem. With many developers opting to use Unreal Engine over other proprietary development tools, suddenly shutting off access to an entire marketplace for gaming could have a huge impact with bifurcating mobile gaming in general.
The statement released today was prepared by Kevin Gammill, the General Manager for Gaming Developer Experiences for Microsoft. Kevin declared that the Unreal Engine provided by Epic Games, if not kept available on the Apple App Store for developers, would require Microsoft "to choose between abandoning its customers and potential customers on the iOS and macOS plattforms or choosing a different game engine when preparing to develop new games."
- Denying Epic access to Apple’s SDK and other development tools will prevent Epic from supporting Unreal Engine on iOS and macOS, and will place Unreal Engine and those game creators that have built, are building, and may build games on it at a substantial
- (a) Developing a game using different game engines for different platforms may be prohibitively expensive and difficult. In any event, it is not as cost-effective as using a game engine that supports different platforms.
- (b) As a result, game creators, including Microsoft, that are preparing to develop a game targeted at multiple platforms generally choose game engines based both on the functionality they provide as well as their ability to support development for those platforms.
- (c) If Unreal Engine cannot support games for iOS or macOS, Microsoft would be required to choose between abandoning its customers and potential customers on the iOS and macOS platforms or choosing a different game engine when preparing to develop new games.
- (d) Because iOS is a large and growing market for games, Apple’s discontinuation of Unreal Engine’s ability to support iOS will be a material disadvantage for the Unreal Engine in future decisions by Microsoft and other game creators as to the choice of an engine for new games
The war between Apple and EPIC Games is going strong and remains to be seen who will win!