Starting in 2024, Epic Games will change the pricing model for Unreal Engine customers outside of game development. This will affect automotive, film, and other industries as Epic will move to a seat-based enterprise software licensing model for non-game developers.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney compared the new pricing model to that of other popular enterprise software, such as Maya and Photoshop. He said that the new model will be more fair and transparent for non-game developers, and it will also allow Epic Games to invest more in developing Unreal Engine for all users.
The new pricing model will be based on the number of seats that a company has for Unreal Engine. A seat is defined as a single user who has access to the software. “It’s not going to be unsually expensive or unusually inexpensive,” Sweeney noted.
Epic Games has not yet released specific pricing information for the new model. However, the company has said that it will be working with non-game developers to ensure that the new model is fair and affordable for all users.
The change in pricing model is a significant departure from Epic Games' previous approach to Unreal Engine pricing. For many years, Unreal Engine has been free to download and use for all developers, regardless of industry. However, Epic Games has been under increasing pressure from investors to generate more revenue from Unreal Engine.
The new pricing model is likely to be controversial among some non-game developers. However, Epic Games believes that the new model is necessary to ensure the long-term success of Unreal Engine.
Tim Sweeney responded to some queries on Twitter/X about the new pricing model. According to his response
, indie producers and filmmakers won't be affected. He mentioned, "there will be minimum revenue thresholds for commercial projects, and student/educator use will remain free.
" However, he didn't provide further details about what these thresholds might be or if they'll vary depending on the industry.