The developers behind Fortnite have launched extraordinary lawsuits against both Apple and Google, after the tech giants kicked the game off their respective app stores.

There’s a really snippy ad campaign involved, too. More on that later.

The fracas kicked off on Thursday, when Epic Games, the folks behind the massively popular online shooter, rolled out an update.

The change allowed users to make purchases with real money inside the mobile version of the game.

Previously, anyone wanting to stock up on V-Bucks had to file their transaction through the App Store or Google’s payment system.

Both Apple and Google take a cut of each transaction filed through their app stores.

Considering Fortnite‘s size, that’s a huge chunk of change; citing analytics firm Sensor Tower, the New York Times reckons Apple has accrued US$360 million (AU$505 million) in revenue from iOS Fortnite transactions since March 2018.

Apple shunted Fortnite off the App Store in response to the shake-up, and Google followed soon after.

In a statement provided to Gizmodo Australia, Epic Games said it has “taken legal action to end Apple’s anti-competitive restrictions on mobile device marketplaces.”

Gizmodo Australia also confirmed Epic Games has taken the legal fight to Google.

But it doesn’t seem like this was a snap decision, as Epic Games have also targeted Apple in a new ad.

If you think that looks familiar, you’re correct.


It seems this one boils down to not just who owns the product, but who owns the market, and the New York Times has a pretty clear explanation of the forces at play here.

It’s a lot of drama for a game, but anything can be dramatic when there’s that much money behind it.

Image: Chesnot / Getty Images