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Unity Announces New Runtime Fee and Enhancements to Subscription Plans

By Xueyang
Sep. 12, 2023 updated 10:05

Unity announces new subscription planUnity announces new subscription plan

Unity Technologies, the company behind the popular Unity game engine, recently unveiled some major changes that will impact game developers starting January 1, 2024. The biggest highlight? A new Unity Runtime Fee based on game installs. The move is aimed at ensuring that Unity can continue to provide valuable services to game developers at scale.

The Unity Runtime is the software component that enables games to run on devices. Each time a game is downloaded, the Unity Runtime is also installed. Therefore, Unity has decided to charge a fee based on this download mechanism. The idea is that the fee would allow developers to keep most of their ongoing revenue from player engagement, setting it apart from traditional revenue-sharing models.

Unity has established revenue and install thresholds to determine which games qualify for this new fee. For Unity Personal and Unity Plus, the fee kicks in if the game has made 200,000 USD or more in the past 12 months and has garnered at least 200,000 lifetime game installs. For Unity Pro and Unity Enterprise, the fee applies to games that have made 1 million USD or more in the last year and have over 1 million lifetime installs. The fee varies depending on the number of new installs and whether the game is in a standard or emerging market.

But it's not all about new fees. Unity also announced the addition of new services to its subscription plans, and they're throwing them in without any hike in seat prices. Starting this November, Unity will introduce cloud-based asset management, DevOps tools, and real-time AI functionality at no extra cost. These new features are part of Unity’s commitment to assist creators with the complexities of game development.

Unity Plus is also getting retired for new subscribers, as Unity aims to streamline its service offerings. Existing Unity Plus subscribers will be offered a chance to upgrade to Unity Pro at the current Unity Plus price.

This overhaul marks a significant shift in Unity's business model, aimed at scaling with the evolving needs of the game development community. While the changes have the potential to stir up some debate, Unity's high revenue and install thresholds suggest that smaller developers won't feel the pinch until they hit it big, making the fee more of a "success tax" than a hurdle for entry-level creators.

In summary, Unity is repositioning itself to meet the multifaceted demands of modern game development while maintaining a focus on scalability and financial flexibility for creators. Time will tell how these changes are received, but for now, Unity seems committed to adapting to a rapidly changing landscape.

Source: Unity