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Unity officially backtracks on many of its previously announced per-install runtime fees

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Last week, the Unity game engine and development tool company announced new pricing plans starting January 1, 2024. However, those pricing changes included a per-install runtime fee for every game that used the engine, and that change was almost universally panned by game developers, including most current Unity Engine creators.

Today, Unity officially announced it has backtracked on most of those pricing changes. The blog post also included an apology about how Unity announced its previous plans:

We should have spoken with more of you and we should have incorporated more of your feedback before announcing our new Runtime Fee policy. Our goal with this policy is to ensure we can continue to support you today and tomorrow, and keep deeply investing in our game engine.

One big change is that the Unity Personal plan will remain completely free with no runtime fees at all. The plan will also increase the revenue cap from $100,000 to $200,000, and games made with that plan will no longer have to show the "Made with Unity" splash screen. In addition, no Unity Engine game developer that makes less than $1 million "in trailing 12-month revenue" will have to pay runtime fees.

For game developers who sign up for the Unity Pro and Unity Enterprise plans, the runtime fee will not apply to the current Unity games they are working on. The fee will only be applied if a game is developed, or is upgraded to, the "next LTS version of Unity shipping in 2024 and beyond."

Unity added:

For games that are subject to the runtime fee, we are giving you a choice of either a 2.5% revenue share or the calculated amount based on the number of new people engaging with your game each month. Both of these numbers are self-reported from data you already have available. You will always be billed the lesser amount.

While these pricing changes are certainly a lot better than what Unity announced last week, it remains to be seen if current Unity developers, many of whom say they can no longer trust the company, will abandon the engine for a competitor.

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