Epic Games makes its Unreal Engine 4 free for all

By Shawn Knight ยท 11 replies
Mar 2, 2015
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  1. unreal engine free developer gaming epic games development gdc unreal subscription unreal engine 4 tim sweeny gdc 2015

    Epic Games made history at last year’s Game Developers Conference when it opened its Unreal Engine 4 up to all via a monthly subscription model. At this year’s conference, the company is doing away with monthly licensing fees and making its popular engine free for all to use.

    In exchange for use of the engine, Epic Games will earn a five percent royalty on gross revenue after the first $3,000 per product, per quarter should a developer monetize a game or application built using Unreal Engine 4.

    The change is effective immediately. Epic will be issuing a pro-rated refund to current subscribers for their most recent month’s payment. What’s more, anyone that has ever paid for a subscription will receive a $30 credit that can be used in the Unreal Engine Marketplace.

    Up to this point, Unreal Engine 4 set developers back $19 per month.

    Just to reiterate, we’re talking about the full version of Unreal Engine 4, not some watered-down trial version. It includes all of the C++ source code and tools that Epic uses to build its own games. The engine also includes game templates, content samples and tutorials to help newcomers get acclimated to using it.

    Epic also released a teaser trailer of sorts that showcases clips from multiple games built using its latest engine including Batman: Arkham Knight, DMC: Definitive Edition and Hellblade.

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    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 5, 2015
  2. loading

    loading TS Enthusiast Posts: 67   +13

    Very interesting. Not being a developer myself I wonder if they would like this newer format or prefer the monthly tiers. Trying to remember if was a flat fee per month or it was a flat fee + royalties.

    But it's great to know that the Unreal Engine will be more widely available to would-be developers.

    Edit: Read the old article. Dropping the monthly fee for straight up royalties (same %) I think is a good move. Not that $20 a month was a drop in the bucket to begin with but at least now those that are interested have an easy stepping stone to get started without an investment.
  3. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,182   +732

    Sick game engine, and kudos to Epic for doing this, but I worry that we'll see more The Order: 1886-like games as a result.

    For those that don't know, The Order: 1886 is the best looking console game to date, but the gameplay is absolute garbage.
  4. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,200   +479

    This is perfect timing - I was looking into licensing some development platforms/utilities in order to start building projects for the Oculus Rift. The recent versions of UDK have support built in.
  5. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 5,051   +4,084

    OT but relevant article to that point: http://www.craveonline.com/gaming/a...dev-threatens-pull-ads-low-order-1886-reviews

    I suspect your worry is not without merit.
  6. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,182   +732

    Last edited: Mar 3, 2015
  7. poohbear

    poohbear TS Addict Posts: 193   +95

    Sounds way better deal for Epic than $20/month! so 5% royalty, if a game makes 1 million dollars they take $50,000! Way better than $20/mth! lol
  8. Axle Greese

    Axle Greese TS Enthusiast Posts: 31

    Exactly, but also because it's a way to get students with an interest in game creation and who usually have little or no money to become accustomed to using UE4 development tools.
  9. Treekodar

    Treekodar TS Rookie

    It was 19/month with 5% royalty before.
    They removed the 19/month sub, that's it.
    Puiu likes this.
  10. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,473   +218

    It's not a problem, because percentages don't matter. We'll see more shitty games, but we'll also see more good games, and even if the shitty games outnumber the good ones, the fact that we'll have more good games is a net win.
  11. Sniped_Ash

    Sniped_Ash TS Maniac Posts: 253   +108

    Somewhere, Denis Dyack is furious.
  12. Abraka

    Abraka TS Booster Posts: 99   +35

    Competition is a wonderful thing. They lowered their prices to beat Unity3D and CryEngine. We know that CryEngine offers best quality in the industry, and now since Amazon bought it, they've made it very cheap (in a good way). Unreal Engine is good too, but a bit heavy on resources. And finally Unity3D has ok graphics, not as good as the previous two, but is really easy to use.

    Having 3 interesting game engines fighting for customers - what can be better than that? Except maybe having 4 good game engines, but let's not be too greedy, eh?

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