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Epic raises Unreal Developer Kit royalty threshold

Epic Games has substantially raised the royalty threshold on its Unreal Developer Kit, granting financial breathing room to smaller and independent developers.

Epic vice president Mark Rein announced the threshold change in a post on the Epic forums.

"We're really excited about folks making some amazing things with UDK," he wrote.

"We realize that a lot of you are just started in the business so not having to pay royalties on your first $50,000 should help you get a financial footing toward building a quality game development business."

The new threshold of $50,000 is ten times the previous figure of $5000.

Cementing the company's reputation for open communication with client developers, Rein also confirmed that Epic's measurement of revenues is based on net figures.

"Whether you sell your product through digital distribution (or a retail location) the company doing the sale to the end user ... takes a cut (typically around 30%) for their efforts," he explained.

"The price they sell it for is called the retail price. The amount of money they pay to you on each sale is called the wholesale amount. When you pay us royalties you pay on the wholesale amount, i.e. the money you actually receive."

The Unreal Development Kit is a free version of the Unreal Engine used in major releases, and was offered to users from November 2009. Commercial use of the kit requires a $99 per-release payment and 25 percent royalties.

Thanks, Nathan.

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