Unity has received much criticism since last week when it announced its plan to change how its pricing plans work. As part of a new policy, the company stated it’d charge developers an increasing fee, every time their games were installed on a device. Developers, all the way from indie to bigwig studios, took shots at the company for this controversial pricing change. Now, in response, Unity has issued an official apology on X.
We have heard you. We apologize for the confusion and angst the runtime fee policy we announced on Tuesday caused. We are listening, talking to our team members, community, customers, and partners, and will be making changes to the policy. We will share an update in a couple of…
— Unity (@unity) September 17, 2023
The post started off by saying that the company has heard its users, and wished to apologize for the confusion their new fee policy might have caused. The post also mentions Unity is working closely with its team members, community, customers, and partners. They plan on making changes to their policy soon. While they’ll likely have more to share in the coming days, for now, they ended things off with a thanks.
It’s unsurprising to see the policy get changed, especially considering the sheer amount of backlash it received. The pricing change would’ve drastically affected games that are given away as part of bundles or subscription services like the Xbox Game Pass. The new policy also garnered criticism since it’d affect all games distributed after January 1st, even if they were developed long before then.
The change also opened the door for damage to developers through sabotage and piracy. Developers were unsure if installations made on pirated copies would still count. Unity clarified they would use their proprietary data analysis services to weed out such cases. Of course, they didn’t reveal any details on how any of this would work. So, developers were mostly told to trust the company and hope it had things all figured out.
Aggro Crab, an indie studio with a game set to hit the Xbox Game Pass in 2024, also raised the concern the company could face massive fees because their game is available through a subscription service. Millions of users could potentially download their game for free. In such a case, however, Unity clarified the cost of the installations would go to the distributors.
- Unity’s Outrageous New Pricing Has Placed Indie Games In Troubled Waters
- Unity Says Distributors Like Microsoft Will Have To Cover New Runtime Costs
- Unity Executives Sell Thousands Of Shares Ahead Of The Highly Controversial Fees Announcement
While the policy will likely be reverted or changed, the industry doesn’t plan on forgetting it all just yet. Unity’s latest statement, for example, has garnered quite a bit of criticism already. Trent Kusters, a game developer mentioned how there wasn’t any confusion to begin with. The fact is everyone clearly understood how devastating and anti-developer this new policy would’ve been. Hence, the backlash.
Popular video game streamer, Asmongold, also chimed in, mentioning how Unity wasn’t going to get away with everything simply because of an apology. Designing a game on a video game engine is a massive investment of time and money, and requires trust. That has already been broken, and it’s going to take a while for developers to trust Unity is on their side again.
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