Earlier this week, a participant in the Fortnite: Battle Royale Australian Open in January posted to Reddit, complaining that he hadn’t received his payment — $1,000 Australian — and that he knew of at least 20 other players who similarly had not received payment.
Upon contacting Epic Games, he was told that Epic Games did not sponsor the tournament, despite the tournament’s handbook being clearly labeled as sponsored by Epic Games. While that could have been a lie by a (non-Epic-affiliated) tournament organizer, the poster produced evidence of a tournament participant who had been paid by Epic Games for his showing in the event. Others responded to his post, claiming to have been paid or not paid.
Today, Epic made a post laying out the issues with the tournament payment system, which have been “confusing and lacking transparency for many” and its attempts to rectify the situation. It provides an email address that unpaid tournament participants can use to contact Epic Games, while also saying that the it “encountered a gap in the monitoring of this account beginning in early February.” Having encountered something similar at a job some time ago, I read that as “The guy whose job it was to monitor this wasn’t doing his job, at all” — assuming there was a guy who had that job in the first place.
In a response on the Reddit thread, an Epic representative also said that some tournament players “have not completed all the necessary information that is required to process payments.” While that’s likely true in some cases, others talked about emailing the company multiple times over a series of months and receiving no reply.
Whatever the circumstances behind the issues, Epic is at least doing what it can now to rectify matters. The website lists a series of steps players should take to receive their payments, as well as a list of tournaments that have as-yet-unfulfilled prize money obligations. Next time, let’s hope that the marketing team works a little more closely with the operations team — it’s a lot easier to announce huge tournament prizes than it is to fulfill them.