An exhibit in the Epic Games v. Apple trial reveals Walmart’s efforts to pitch its own cloud gambling support to Epic Games and receive Fortnite on board.
“I played Walmart’s demonstration on an Android cellphone (with an Xbox controller) and the experience felt like playing PS4 and superior to enjoying Android or iOS,” stated Epic Games co-founder Mark Rein in an email thread from April 2019. Rein also excitedly shares a photograph of a match clip with the rest of the Epic Games executive team, showing how Walmart was planning to sell this in stores to let a phone attach to a controller. “They are going to market the clip to get a crazy low amount, they were saying something such as $2,” said Rein.
A presentation connected to the emails shows how Walmart was pitching its cloud gaming service to publishers such as Epic Games.
It’s not apparent from Walmart’s demonstration once the firm planned to start the service, with a beta period originally set to start at July 2019. An ancient mock-up of the user experience appears very similar to other cloud gaming solutions, with a list of games, genres, and a search function.
Walmart was likely exactly what it describes as a”open ecosystem,” having the capacity to stream from the cloud or download and play games locally. The technology behind Walmart’s cloud gambling service is LiquidSky, a service Walmart obtained.
Epic Games was among several publishers to which Walmart pitched. Reports initially surfaced about Walmart’s programs in 2019, but the company has not officially announced any cloud gaming support. Sources familiar with Walmart’s programs tell The Verge that a number of publishers and developers had signed up to produce or host matches on Walmart’s service, but that the launch was put on hold once the pandemic started annually.
It’s not clear if Walmart’s cloud gaming support will still launch. We achieved to Walmart to remark on Project Storm, but the firm failed to respond in time for publication.
“Walmart is open to exploring all kinds of business models, but I hope their support is going to be the cheapest of all these because they’re Walmart and that’s their gig.”
Epic Games ultimately partnered with Nvidia to launch Fortnite on GeForce Now this past year. It is now the only way to play Fortnite on iOS, after the Epic dispute with Apple led to the removal of Fortnite from the App Store.