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Unreal Engine 4

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by alt.tszyu, Mar 19, 2014.

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  1. Noisecrime

    Noisecrime

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    I addressed the getting the Pro license in my original post, it would double the cross-over point, but that still not very high for a successful freelancer. As for more team members I addressed that afterward in my second post, just before yours came through. Its certainly another aspect to consider and off the top of my head I'd say that Unreal 4 business models real strength here is for small teams of 1-4 people who don't expect to generate more than $100-200k gross profits p.a.

    After that for larger teams I think things tend to swing back as don't forget you still have to pay your employees from your profits and a larger team means a bigger studio, larger out-goings and thus require consistent profit driven games to be produced.

    Even taking the highest price comparison point possible, that of buying a new Unity license per person per year including Android and iOS that is $54,000 for the cross-over point. Can you really set up a studio business of 5 people and survive on gross profit of less than $270k? That includes paying each person, paying utility bills, paying for studio space, paying corporation tax etc. Honestly I would not be at all surprised if for a successful business you will exceed the cross-over point between Unreal 4 and Unity costs.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  2. Swearsoft

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    If the feature you are basing your decisions on is real-time GI then you have a problem... of course it is awesome and solves a lot, it's also not going to make or save your game.
     
  3. AdrianC

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    From what I understood, in this case, you would pay no royalties. The client will pay royalties off his sales, but the developer just needs to pay the $19. Maybe I'm wrong, but that makes more sense to me. So as a freelancer, your total yearly cost would simply be $228.
     
  4. im

    im

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    @ Woodlauncher
    @ Chariots

    sorry my bad...

    Still I check Blueprints is visual scripting which should be horrendously slower than unreal script and most likely as slow or slower then Kismet since a lot of what Kismet used was done by game developers using Unreal Script...

    Also is Unreal Script and Kismet still there or were they completely remove?

    Finally where can I find their asset store? I could not find it off their website, do I have to be running the editor?
    https://www.unrealengine.com/
     
  5. Deleted User

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    I don't think I have the problem and it's not really what I'm basing my decision at all. Let's not play the Yoda card, some of us have been doing this professionally a long time ;)..
     
  6. Noisecrime

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    Unity used to offer source code licenses, at least they did a few years back, you just had to contact them directly. Obviously the cost far exceed buying Pro, but if you need the source you pay the money. Unfortunately now it really wouldn't make much sense to buy a source code license from Unity as the cost regardless of price is going to seem prohibitive compared to what Epic are now offering.
     
  7. Swearsoft

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    Even tougher to sell. This is what adobe tried to do with flash... Let's just say: it didn't really pan out.
     
  8. Swearsoft

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    I understand. My original comment was aimed at a lot of people talking about the GI solution and if it was being used and if it wasn't that was a deal breaker. I know we all love high end games and so are consumers, the reality is they don't really have the hardware for what we would like to make.
     
  9. BrainMelter

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    I agree. If you have a nice workflow going with Unity, switching to Unreal won't help you much. If anything, the switch will hurt you in the near term. I'd say Unreal does have the edge in high-end production values, but for most of us that's not a huge concern.
     
  10. Deleted User

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    I'm still not convinced 100% by UE4 yet and I've had it since late last year, then again I've not had chance to spend much time with it either but our sister company has. I think I need to have a long hard think as the price I got quoted is far exceeding this, then again it does include SpeedTree, Enlighten and Scaleform.. Hence the cost difference.

    Do you think 50K and 5% sounds like a good deal? I'll probably knock them down a fair bit after this but still. ;)
     
  11. Noisecrime

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    Interesting idea but don't forget as a freelance your client has to pay your wages, which means the product you create must sell to cover the costs of employing you, business overheads, marketing, taxes and any number of other costs for a successful business. So whilst you may not be paying the royalty directly the client will and this is likely to factor into your earnings from them.

    However this would only really cover work for higher freelancers who are directly employed by a company, myself I freelance on demand for clients and they would not expect to have to pay any additional costs beyond the budget pricing given to them by me for creating their product.Obviosuly I can work out the budget I would charge for creating their product and could determine the royalty charge and add that to the overall budget, but I feel with the numbers i've outlined earlier that UE4 would be equally if not more expensive in the long term.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  12. hippocoder

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    Personally speaking I'm not sure we'll switch to Unreal 4 yet. We've had it in house since 2013, and have constantly evaluated both Unity and Unreal 4. Our observations are:


    - Unity Fixed cost of ownership
    - Close relations with Unity staff - if we choose Unity, we may be promoting unity and in turn they've got our back too. Developer relations.
    - We know Unity inside out
    - Price is cheap. If you plan on making 65k across Win, Mac, Mobile, then both have the same price.

    Interesting, right? The *learning cost* barrier to entry with Unreal 4 is lower for full features. But this price isn't sufficient enough reason for a professional developer to switch from Unity to Unreal 4.

    However, the masses don't care about this. They've released nothing remotely earning 65k, let alone even bought pro. In face I heard some of them complain about $19. But it takes all types.


    In any case, I am interested in staying with Unity if Unity is interested in looking after me with console license opportunities. I don't really care much for desktop or mobile pricing. So far, Unity is being cool about this.
     
  13. Deleted User

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    Well baking is fine, nothing wrong with it. It's more for us than them, but it's not exactly a deal breaker either. What I'm miffed at is I can't even lightmap in Unity.. The system just grinds to a halt and crashes due to RAM limitations, even if I had source it wouldn't matter there's not a chance in hell I'd re-write the editor.

    There seems to be quite a bit lacking in this iteration of UE4, so for people looking at the shiny $19.00 a month. Do some research before committing long term. Just in case :)

    Not dictating, just hopefully offering some friendly advice.
     
  14. the_motionblur

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    Unfortunately it seems that math often is not necessarily a thing for the masses. ;)
     
  15. Noisecrime

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    Is that for UE4 or for Unity source license? Actually its probably irrelevant as in terms of value you should be able to calculate the overall cost, i.e. how much your game/product is forecast to generate, use that to determine cost of royalties, see if what is left over can cover the base cost, paying your staff, paying for studio etc. Thats the only way I could determine if a 'deal' was good or bad value as its really relative to your expectations for income.

    Don't misunderstand me, i've never purchased a source code license or ran a company. I've been freelance for over 15 years so I do have to look after myself, which does mean weighing up costs, profits, loses etc and I have always taken an interest in the cost of game engines over the last few decades and from what I remember those costs are always falling.
     
  16. Chariots

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    Blueprint is completely based on C++. There are no inherent performance issues. UnrealScript was removed, and since Kismet was based on UnrealScript, it was also removed.

    Asset store is inside the editor, there are only example assets currently, but you can clearly see the intent, as it works exactly the same was as the Unity asset store.
     
  17. Uttpd

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    only if you use blueprints for coding as i understood. Jump to 35m http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxrcwNGnXZc to see the blueprints.
    Maybe C++ coders can be able to offer add-ons as blueprint blocks since the source code will be open,
    Can´t wait to see how this will evolve, and how Unity will respond
     
  18. Thomas-Pasieka

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  19. nipoco

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    I guess this is sarcasm :D

    As far as I know is it still possible to have realtime GI in UE4.
    Besides that, there are tons of stuff in UE4, that Unity doesn't have.
    On top of my head: UE4 has the better terrain engine, superior level streaming, volumetrics, better particle system with better particle rendering (i.e. particles are correct lit) emissive materials. area lights, apex cloth, apex destruction, visual scripting and visual material editor by default, material layers, simplygon, speedtree (U5 only supports the import but does not ship with Speedtree itself as afaik), face fx, all for free. In Unity I have to pay for those extras.
    Unity 5 looks good. But it still lacks of some important things. It's also to expensive compared to UE4. Not to mention that you have to pay for a lot third-party features, to fix Unity's shortcomings. i.e. you want proper cloth physics, you have to buy Shroud for $599. Simplygon wants to let Unity users pay for each converted model etc.
     
  20. Swearsoft

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    How much Ram does the system have?

    We made huge levels and 16G was enough, we could easily double that if needed, but the performance on assets alone wouldn't allow the level to expand further (mutliplayer, no streaming). Meaning we had to cut back on size (number of assets, polygons, textures), before we had reached problems with baking.

    $19 for trying out isn't much. Just like Unity though you can find a "Free" version if you want, most that do don't end up making anything though. As I expect will be the case with the majority of the people jumping on the 'woohoo UE4 FTW' band wagon.
     
  21. Meltdown

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    Have to agree with this. $75 per platform is rather pricey. You could get the entire Adobe suite of products for $49.99 a month, which is about 15 high-end products including many industry leading tools.

    Or you can get Photoshop (an industry standard leading tool) now for $9.99 a month -

    Unity needs to offer a more attractive subscription model or more options...

    Option 1 - $49.95 base pro subscription, with $29.99 per additional platform (0% royalties)
    Option 2 - $19.95 per month, all platforms (5% royalties) (to compete with Unreal)


    ^^ These sort of prices make UT's pricing a lot more attractive for the average indie. So they will get tons more subscriptions. But paying $150 a month for 2 platforms is edging on the oh I will just use free or move to EU4 consideration.


    EDIT : While I'm at it, perpetual licenses could be more reasonably priced too..

    $1500 - Base Pro license
    $650 - Each additional platform
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  22. Deleted User

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    I'll be straight up, we need to make $575K to recoup the losses for this venture.. So with Unreal 4 5% added not including any external costs we'd need $603,750.. With unity and 10 licences plus additional time spent in man hours, we'll far exceed that for the moment.. The biggest kick for me RIGHT now is when Unity 5 is going to arrive..

    Luckily the full team is relatively new and I've not yet invested more than mine and three others time, which are mates for the moment. But it doesn't mean after that things aren't going to get ugly quickly. So it's crunch time after the new Tax year, no more dawdling.
     
  23. Chariots

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  24. im

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    @ Chariots

    So are you saying that Blueprints generate natively compiled or jitted C/C++ binaries?

    From what I understand while Blueprint maybe written in C/C++ is does not generate natively compiled C/C++ code!

    So it's either a bytecode interpreter written in C/C++ and like all bytecode interpreters on average 20x-30x or slower than natively compiled or jitted languages such as C/C++, C#, Java, ect and since its a visual language it most likely is using a dom internally to represent the the visual language and is then far worse then bytecode interpreter.

    Anyways I'm trying to get Unreal Engine 4 right now to run some simple benchmarks and see what is going on...

    perhaps port some of these although it will be paid since its visual programming language... (well unless they have clear text form)
    The Computer Language Benchmarks Game
    http://benchmarksgame.alioth.debian.org/
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  25. Deleted User

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    It's not the 64-bit beast light mapping solution that's causing the issue, all our 20 machines are specc'd out with I7 3770K's 32GB DDR and GTX 780TI's.. When we kick off beast the pre-computation export to beast just kills the editor..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 19, 2014
  26. TheDMan

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    See thats where the problem is. UE4 is cheaper for 99% of developers. How many dished out $1500 for Unity Pro + $1500 iOS Pro + $1500 Android Pro finished a game, had a good game, released it to the App Store and Marketplace, etc and made somewhere between $0 and $5000?

    Unity is cheap if you know with 100% certainty your game will make you more money than you spent getting the licenses/upgrades, and for the majority, that is not the case. Most spend the money think they will make a certain amount and get totally burned when their game/app is released and they only get pennies back.

    So for the person who is taking a chance, and hopes to make some money UE4 is better because you pay very little, and if by CHANCE your game is a hit you'll end up paying more than buying Unity but many wont care But if your game makes nothing you've only paid for the subscription which is far cheaper than buying licenses.

    I personally would not give a damn handing over $50,000 to Epic if it means I can pocket over $900,000. But I would be super pissed if I paid $4500 in licenses and add-ons and end up making $300.

    But thats the nature of the game development beast, you'll never know if your game will be a hit or a miss.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  27. drawcode

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    I have bought every full pro version and ios/android add-on on pre-order and every version of Unity since 2. After hearing the WebGL add-on will also be another full add-on price and now this from Epic. First time I have felt like I overpaid (I also buy a metric ton of assets probably even more than the cost of the license).

    The Unreal royalties does have an impact on the decision and I like not having a royalties clause but nowadays when you need massive promotional support maybe a the platform vested in your success is a good thing.

    Unreal is also doing an asset store much like Unity which is a killer feature and part of the reason they can do this probably.

    I was hoping over time Unity would be almost free for pro and the revenues from asset store, ads, cloud etc would lower the barrier. But is seems to be going up in price rather than down like everything else now. I appreciate Epic being competitive on price and it is an amazing deal, they should have done this 5 years ago. I started in Unreal modding and my first game job used Unreal 3, there was no way it was affordable then for indies, now they have flipped it almost.

    Your move Unity.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  28. Ocid

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    Ahh ok I must have missed that part.

    Isn't Unity's main market in small 1-4 man teams though?

    For big teams it'll come down to alot more than the cost of the engine but for a 1 man band like me then it does play a part when I have very little to throw around. The effect of anything probably won't be felt for a while a Unity still has plenty of time to respond before 5.0 comes around.
     
  29. Chariots

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    I don't know how they work, but if they work something like Kismet, there is really no need for generating bytecode with it.
     
  30. Ocid

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    Don't forget VAT gets added for those of us in Europe. So you're looking at closer to $100.
     
  31. lmbarns

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    Its in the editor......as has been mentioned repeatedly.... UNREAL ASSET STORE IS IN THE EDITOR NOT A WEBPAGE
     
  32. SememeS

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  33. Swearsoft

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    This is great. I can see Unity's price dropping in the near future. Not so much, but at least a little.

    @ShadowK: if the license costs are going to create a problem I would look into UE4. I would also look into team structure and needs and make sure I'm using what I'm paying for (now rather than later). I would also contact Unity. BTW does this project have a website or something?
     
  34. BrUnO-XaVIeR

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  35. Ocid

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  36. Deleted User

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    Yeah we just dropped all the autodesk subs and went with Modo instead, I did the last hiring stage this week and the only thing that's left is to make our final decisions on a couple of tools.. (Engine being one of them).. Were not far enough in for it to really make a massive difference at this point.

    Us rubbish programmer types did the concepts in my signature, the website is still being developed so is the cinematic trailer.
     
  37. Partel-Lang

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    Seems to me a desperate move more than anything.. Unity is still behind, but what really matters is the momentum, I mean where things will be in 5 years or so and if you think of where things were 5 years ago, Unity seems to be catching up fast. And now that Unreal Engine source code is available, it will be a nice learning resource for Unity devs ;)

    Before you flee over to UE4, have you considered the cost of...

    1. learning the Unreal editor and it's workflow and kinks,
    2. learning C++
    3. extended production time of your next project because of the learning curve
    4. abandoning your existing investments in Unity and all the value that you have bought from the Asset Store
    5. further development of all your past/existing projects doomed, especially if you have been a subscribed user
    6. potential risks involved with this kind of adventurous marketing model, they might easily increase the price when the engine matures
    7. buying a desktop PC that is able to run the engine properly, just look at their system requirements.
    8. making revenue reports to Epic. This can get quite nasty with complex revenue models that include advertising, licensing and such. If you need to make a game for a client, I'd like to see you explain them why they'll have to share their revenue for something that they have commissioned for. This reminds me of the Flash Premium fiasco. ;)
     
  38. Meltdown

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    DaFuq?

    Did all the game engine bosses meet at GDC and decide to change the face of game development all in one day?

    19 March - The re-birth of game development.

    So CryTek blows everyone out the water... $9.95 per month - royalty free
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  39. Swearsoft

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    This is were the new editor will be useful and why everyone wants it. The pre-comp is done in the editor. How do these levels perform when built?
     
  40. Noisecrime

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    Thank you ShadowK for being upfront with your projected costs, few people are willing or even able to do so.

    As you say then thats about $29k in royalty costs, but i'm not sure how you feel that is far exceed with Unity for 10 seats, unless you are factoring in Android + iOS? Even then its only a little more ,assuming buying pro from new now upgrades thats $1,500 * 3 = $4,500 per seat, so $45,000 total, so a third higher. But that start up cost covers you for two years of Unity (more or less) and doesn't account that once your venture starts making more than your break-even point you start to pay Epic more and more money.

    I'll admit given those numbers its a close thing and still inUE4 favour till you might hit gross profits of $1 million, but that has always been my point. The perception is that UE4 has smashed Unity out the park with their pricing model, but once you look deeper and crunch the numbers its not so clear cut. However as i've also mentioned several times, deciding an engine cannot be based on cost alone.

    Personally in your place I would have you tried talking to Unity to see if they might offer a discount on bulk Unity purchases. I have no idea if they are willing to do that, but its worth a try.
     
  41. BrainMelter

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  42. im

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    @ Chariots

    yes i agree it works like kismet which is extremely slow even slower than unreal script! ouch...

    anyways it does not matter better for unity since we have c# which its natively jitted... well except we have old sad mono runtime with slow gc. still it should be way faster than blueprings, kismet, unreal combined

    anyways im happy, i was just trying to bring out its slow like a dog... (im not sure why people say its slow as a dog cause dogs are actually quite fast, still its horribly slow)
     
  43. nipoco

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    I've been waiting for a serious alternative to Unity, because I dislike how they treating me and other AssetStore vendors, all the nepotism and the ridiculous high subscription prices.

    Seems the wait is over now :)
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  44. drawcode

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    They have to do something like this, I really like them going creative cloud rates or more competitively now. $3k per year for updates and $6k per year (with core pro, ios, android, webgl) is going to be too high and they will lose, or starting to lose, their core base.

    They need other revenues to pad it more to lower the entry point big time. Asset store, ads, cloud, royalty subscription, and more to make up their balance. More like a free to play model than premium up front.

    Royalties can be good and bad, today's market they might be good because the company will be invested in their developers success and it is more open. See Apple iTunes, Google Play, ad networks, new game engine service deals from Epic/CryEngine and of course Unity's own Asset store which others are now copying that killer feature (epic) and it was based on iTunes. I think everything has to move this way. Maybe one day that will also influence Autodesk but I doubt it.

    If they do change pricing (the market says they have do do something) I'd be happy even though I just pre-ordered like I do every year for pro and all add-ons (although I was a little irked that they are going to make WebGL add-on extra, no way they can do that now it seems).
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  45. Noisecrime

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    Indeed, though what percentage of these teams are using free vs Pro?

    Regardless it does make the battle between Epic, Unity and now Crytek very interesting as the competitors can both appear and be more attractive from a purely price point of view than Unity currently is.

    I think the perception of the deal from UE4 and now Crytek is going to have to spur Unity into making some compromise with costs, otherwise they risk losing potential converts from free to pro. Overall the whole thing is vastly more complicated than anyone is making out from the point of view of Unity and i'd hate to be their business manager currently ;)
     
  46. TheDMan

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    Better or not in the long run doesnt matter one bit to consumers. Its whatever the public sees as most popular that survives in the long run.

    Ex: VHS vs. Beta
     
  47. Deleted User

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    Fine, no issues at all.. It literally is the need for a 64-bit editor.
     
  48. Blainexi

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  49. Swearsoft

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    I agree. It also allows people to actually see how much things do cost to build. Our estimations were in the same range. People wouldn't accept it, even if it was tied to actual listed assets (down to the skybox, bush and med kit). There is a weird disconnect between what people expect, how much it costs and how much they expect it to cost to make.

    Anyway I will leave my comments on ShadowK's game on their thread and watch from the sidelines how this discussion is going to progress, I can't see a clear winner, apart form the developers and by extension: gamers.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  50. ccsander

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    You exactly nailed it. For someone doing this on the side hoping to be one of the lucky ones whose app ends up on the top 10 charts or just someone wanting to make a game for fun, UE4 will be the way to go.

    So UE4 is now much more attractive for startups, hobbyists, and dreamers. Unity will have to react or they will lose this base of developers, and I'm thinking this is a pretty large base. For those developers who have already made money, this isn't that big of a deal, as they probably already have their Unity Pro licenses and don't have much incentive to switch. I'm somewhere in between these 2 groups. I don't have my projects out for sale yet (developing several Rift apps), but I have already paid for the Unity 4 Pro and 5 Upgrades, and have spent a lot of time becoming a Unity expert. UE4 is still tempting enough for me to subscribe and try it out. If I find something really compelling that Unity is missing and it doesn't take me long to become a UE4 expert, I might make the change.
     
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