PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Unity, the popular video game engine, has received criticism after they recently announced they would charge game developers a fee for each time their game was installed by users.
Unity, which along with Unreal is one of the two most popular video game engines, backtracked and apologized for those changes in a statement Friday morning.
They would have charged developers a 20-cent fee for every time a game was installed past a certain threshold. For example, if a game built using Unity Personal made $200,000 over the past 12 months and was installed 200,000 times since it was released, the developer would have been charged a fee for every install.
This infuriated many independent developers, who said the fees would bankrupt their companies.
However, Unity released a statement earlier today that addressed the issues and made several changes.
The install fee will no longer apply to the free versions of Unity software, and now just the paid versions of it. Developers now also have a choice to either paying a 2.5% revenue share or the calculated amount based on the number of new people engaging with the game each month.
David Abzug, a game design instructor at Bradley University, said that Unity is the game engine they teach at Bradley, and he hopes they can recover.
“Learning an engine is like learning how to drive a nail, that doesn’t teach you how to make a house, but you need to learn that before you can make the house, and so what we do here is we teach people how to make houses, except those houses are video games. The engine is just the tool to do that, but it’s a bonus that that engine is also one of the most widely used ones in the industry,” Abzug said.
Abzug also said he understands that Unity wants to make a profit, but that there are better ways of going about it.
Unity is an engine that is compatible with both 2D and 3D settings, and was the engine used for popular mobile games such as Pokémon Go. The Unreal Engine is used for larger games with multi-year development cycles such as God of War.