Apple defeats bid to return 'Fortnite' to App Store
"We thank the court for recognizing that Epic's problem is entirely self-inflicted and is in their power to resolve," Apple told AFP following the ruling in California late Monday.
"We look forward to making our case to the court in September."
District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez-Rogers's ruling gave Epic a partial victory however by ordering Apple not to limit Epic's ability to provide Unreal Engine, key graphics technology, for other apps.
The judge acknowledged that Fortnite has passionate fans and people are turning to games as the pandemic keeps them home, but she added that companies must nevertheless abide by contractual agreements or work out conflicts in court.
The Silicon Valley-based tech giant told Epic it would cut off access to tools needed to tailor software for devices powered by the iPhone maker's operating systems.
Without those tools, Epic will not be able to create iPhone, iPad or Mac computer versions of its widely used Unreal Engine for powering rich graphics, the company said.
The Unreal Engine powers popular video games other than Fortnite, and has applications such as virtual reality training for astronauts and visual effects for television shows such as "The Mandalorian," according to Epic.
"The current predicament appears of its own making," the judge said of Epic.
But the judge concluded that Apple blocking Epic access to its developers program, which involves separate agreements between the companies, would be going too far.