Unity 5 available for free with “no fucking around”

By Brenna Hillier, Wednesday, 4 March 2015 01:45 GMT

Unity 5 looks amazing, and you can download and faff about with it for free right now.

“We’re not nickel-and-diming people. When we say it’s free, it’s free. We’re not charging a royalty, which I think is akin to looking for whales.”

Unity Technologies announced the release of the fifth version of its popular, simple, and ultra-portable engine at GDC 2015 today.

As well as releasing the gorgeous tech demo above showing off what Unity 5 can do, the company announced it will make the tools free to everyone. If you like the suite and want to release a professional game made on it, you can purchase a Professional license for $1,500 up front or a $75 monthly subscription.

Unlike the free version of Unity 4, the “Personal Edition” does not have any features behind paywalls – it’s the whole thing. You can grab it direct from Unity, right now.

Both Valve’s Source Engine 2 and Epic’s Unreal Engine 4 also went free at GDC this year, making it a pretty great time to be a grass-roots developer.

But in an interview with GamesIndustry, new Unity CEO John Riccitiello said Unity differs from Epic’s approach in that there’s “no fucking around”.

“If you’re a seven-figure developer, you can afford $75 a month. But if you’re not, if you’re just getting started or just choose for artistic reasons to give your games away for free, or if you’re a hobbyist screwing around or a student, this is free. You get the full power of Unity 5 for free,” the one-time EA leader said.

“There’s no royalties, no fucking around. It’s simple. That’s really what we’re announcing.”

Riccitiello, calling Epic a “tiny competitor”, said Unreal Engine 4’s royalties scheme is like a free-to-play game, in that it hopes to catch “whales” to pay for all the free users.

“With Unity, it’s capped. It’s $75 a month or $1,500 for a perpetual license; we’re not nickel-and-diming people and we’re not charging them a royalty,” he said.

“When we say it’s free, it’s free. When we say $75 a month, it’s $75 a month. Yeah, you can buy other stuff from us. We’re not a one-trick pony, but we’re not charging a royalty, which I think is akin to looking for whales.”

Oh, how I missed you, Tricky Ricci! Please say more terrifically outspoken things, forever.

Make sure you watch that tech demo above. Below is Unity’s GDC 2015 sizzle reel, which looks pretty good, too. Finally, please admire the company’s new mascot, whom I have nicknamed Yuu-kun.

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