Terraria developer Re-Logic has rallied against Unity’s controversial runtime fee policy, announcing a major initiative to support emerging game engines with donations and sponsorships. Re-Logic will donate US $100,000 each to Godot and FNA, while also providing them a US $1,000 stipend every month, with the aim of supporting them to grow for as long as they continue to make game engines that are “powerful and approachable for developers everywhere.”
In a statement shared to Twitter, Re-Logic lamented Unity’s recent announcement that it would begin to charge developers per game installs from January 2024, stating that it “dismayed” many within Re-Logic, and the wider games industry. While Re-Logic does not specifically utilise Unity, the team felt it couldn’t “sit idly” as “predatory moves” were made against worldwide studios.
“We unequivocally condemn and reject the recent TOS/fee changes proposed by Unity and the underhanded way they were rolled out,” Re-Logic said. “The flippant manner with which years of trust cultivated by Unity were cast aside for yet another way to squeeze publishers, studios, and gamers is the saddest part. That this move was wholly unnecessary pushes things into the tragedy category – a cautionary tale the industry will not soon forget.”
Re-Logic has chosen to support Godot and FNA, two open-source game engines, as a protest against Unity. Both engines are free, and provide tools for developers to build their games – without the added baggage of being run by large corporations.
In exchange for monetary support, Re-Logic has asked both companies to “remain good people and keep doing all that they can to make these engines powerful and approachable for developers everywhere” in the hopes of disrupting Unity’s hold on the games industry.
“Re-Logic has always been supportive of game developers and indie studios that do things the right way,” Re-Logic said. “We feel that our actions in this moment are the best way to carry that mission forward – by accelerating and strengthening competing open source game engines, we hope to empower and assist studios that are struggling with how best to proceed given these recent events.”
For its part, Unity has acknowledged the recent backlash around its new runtime fee policy, and has announced changes are on the way. A recent report has claimed these changes include caps on revenue for installed games, self-reporting from developers, and other measures – although these are yet to be officially revealed by Unity itself, as it’s reportedly working to refine its messaging and future plans.