Epic Online Services launches today with cross-play for most platforms

Aside from today’s amazing announcements of the Unreal Engine 5 and Fortnite PS5 and Xbox Series X day-one release, Epic Games had one more cool piece of news to announce: Epic Online Services is launching today!

Epic Online Services will serve as a way for developers to hook into a multiplayer gameplay system and social infrastructure that will easily allow them to join communities across platforms. These services will operate independently of one another and can work on any platform or storefront.

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What are the Epic Online Services that developers can use?

  • Matchmaking: Match up players in pairs or groups to play together.Lobbies (Preview): Give players the ability to join a session via invite or search, or create sessions of your own for players to join.
  • Peer-to-peer: Establish peer-to-peer network connectivity between multiple players regardless of firewalls or router setups.
  • Achievements: Motivate your players with badges, statuses, and achievements as they progress in your game.
  • Stats: Query player stats in real time and display achievements on leaderboards or within your own game construct.
  • Leaderboards: Show your players how they rank against their friends and everyone else, encouraging competitive and engaging gameplay.
  • Player data storage: Give your players the freedom to move between platforms by storing their game data in the cloud.
  • Game analytics: Track gameplay, frequency, playerbase, time, and location KPIs to identify opportunities for improvement or expansion.
  • Player ticketing: Connect directly with your players and personalize service through tickets tied to player profiles.

Epic Online Services Fortnite boat

This new service will also support Epic Account services. This means that a developer could set up their game to work with already-existing Epic Accounts and save the trouble of having to make their own login system for its games.

That doesn’t mean developers won’t have the option to use other logins, though. Epic Games notes that devs can mix and match with many other login services and functions, including:

  • Apple
  • Discord
  • Epic Games
  • Nintendo
  • PlayStation
  • Xbox
  • Steam

This would mean that, in theory, you could have a game with Steam Workshop support that can also keep in touch with your entire Fortnite friend list. There’s a lot of room for developers to move around and innovate with Epic Online Services.

Epic Online Services launches today for PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch; Android and iOS services are coming soon. Developers can find out more about this cool new multiplayer infrastructure at the developer website.