Fortnite is a massive, cross-platform, online undertaking that supports millions of people playing at the same time, and the systems that enable that functionality “are expensive to build, test, and harden in real-world conditions,” says Epic. Because it has already done the heavy lifting to build those services, and presumably also because it’s enjoying mind-boggling success as a result, Epic has decided to make Fortnite’s cross-platform software infrastructure available to other developers for free.
“Throughout 2019, we’ll be launching a large set of cross-platform game services originally built for Fortnite, and battle-tested with 200,000,000 players across 7 platforms,” Epic announced today. “These services will be free for all developers, and will be open to all engines, all platforms, and all stores. As a developer, you’re free to choose mix-and-match solutions from Epic and others as you wish.”
The rollout will begin in mid-2019, first on PC and then on other platforms throughout the year, with “cross-platform login, friends, presence, profile, and entitlements” services. They’ll be available on PC, Mac, iOS, Android, PlayStation, Xbox, and Switch—so, basically everything—”to the full extent each platform allows per-title,” Epic said.