There’s a potentially growing debacle for the Unity, as Epic Games have stepped into their feud with Improbable and SpatialOS. Putting the boot in with their wording, Epic and Improbable have set up a $25 million fund to assist developers in transitioning from Unity to “more open engines”.
In a joint blog post between Epic and Improbable, they say:
To assist developers who are left in limbo by the new engine and service incompatibilities that were introduced today, Epic Games and Improbable are together establishing a US $25,000,000 combined fund to help developers transition to more open engines, services, and ecosystems. This funding will come from a variety of sources including Unreal Dev Grants, Improbable developer assistance funds, and Epic Games store funding.
Improbable’s SpatialOS technology has been used by a number of companies over the last few years to create large scale online worlds for their games, plugging into major game engines such as Unity, Unreal Engine and CryEngine. It’s been used for games like Bossa Studios’ Worlds Adrift, Spilt Milk’s Lazarus and plenty more in development.
The dispute between Improbable and Unity has the latter accusing the former of breaking their terms of service over hosting Unity on online servers, and has now seen Improbable’s licenses revoked. Unity state that they gave Improbable notice on several occasions over the last few year, and that this is only tangentially related to the EULA update made in December.
Unity have also clarified that any developer already using Unity and SpatialOS is unaffected by this and can continue to operate, and that developers running Unity-based instances on their own servers or generic cloud hosting can also continue. However, Unity’s authorised list of other platforms is restricted to Genvid, Hatch, Mixer, and PlayStation Now.
Epic’s Time Sweeney was quick to respond to the situation yesterday, decrying what looks like broad overreach from Unity in their updated EULA:
This crazy new EULA (https://t.co/fWJdtqyOvj) even bans distribution of Unity games through stores they don't authorize, then provides a list of authorized services, which doesn't include any stores! https://t.co/ISLVMEuffQ
— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) January 10, 2019
It’s clear that from this, Epic and Improbable have got closer and that the future relationship between Improbable and Unity in serious jeopardy.