Epic Games has announced a shift in its licensing model for the Unreal Engine. Companies using Unreal Engine for purposes other than video game development will soon be charged based on the number of employees using the software. Epic CEO Tim Sweeney unveiled the change during Unreal Fest 2023.
Epic Games, the company behind popular games like Fortnite, also provides the Unreal Engine, a powerful tool for video game development. The engine is free, but game developers must pay a 5% royalty fee once their game earns more than $1 million. Now, in a move to monetize non-gaming uses of the Unreal Engine, the company is changing its licensing model.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney announced Unreal Fest 2023, first reported on X by user ImmatureGamerX. Sweeney stated that the company will move to a ‘seat-based’ licensing model for industries other than gaming, similar to the model used by Adobe for its software products. This change will take effect next year.
— Immature (@ImmatureGamerX) October 3, 2023
To balance this, the new licensing model will require companies to pay a fee for each employee using Unreal Engine, ensuring that Epic Games is compensated for its technology’s wide range of uses.
Sweeney did not provide specific pricing details but said they wanted to be open about the planned changes. “We don’t have terms to announce yet, but I just wanted to get this out in front of everybody for transparency; we’re going to move to a model like that,” he explained.