Unity apologizes after controversy, developers and consumers don’t buy it cover image

Unity apologizes after controversy, developers and consumers don’t buy it

Unity has issued an apology to its users after a week of what it calls “confusion” about the new fees announced on September 12.

Unity, the games engine and software development platform, has apologized for last week's announcement about a change in its fee structure that would have implemented a pay-per-install model for developers. The apology, posted early on Monday morning, stated that they’d be making changes to the policy, and will share an update in a couple of days.

When announced, the changed policy, that would see any piece of Unity-based software that received over 100,000 installs charge $0.20 to the developer, saw universal backlash. The policy was due to be implemented in January 2024.

Unity initially countered with a statement saying that “more than 90% of our customers will not be affected by this change.” However, as of 2022 Unity had around 230,000 developers using its platform. This would mean around 23,000 customers would be affected by the changes, and the vast majority of successful Unity games, including Cuphead, Beat Saber, Pokémon GO, Rust, Subnautica, Cities: Skylines, and hundreds more.

Too little too late for Unity’s apology?

The apology likely comes too little and too late for Unity users. Response to the apology has been universally negative as well, with prominent content creators and developers stating that anything less than a full reversal of the policy wouldn’t be accepted.

An account called Game Studios Disappointed by Unity posted a collage of all the studio announcements affected by the Unity announcement last week:

Meanwhile, content creators such as Asmongold, Esfand, DansGaming, Jacksepticeye, and Ranboo weighed in. Asmongold’s response, with 550k views, and 22k likes was particularly scathing: “yall not going to get off this like some bullshit video game apology with weak willed gamer nerds. People need to build a future with a design engine and the trust is already broken. No one going to build a castle on sand after your bullsh*t.”

As previously covered, last week, interest in Unity’s primary competitors spiked amid the confusion and fury at the announced fee changes. 

In addition, Unity’s decision to let developers wait over weekend for more information on the change (the new fees were initially announced on Sept. 12), has left some of its most valuable customers in the lurch. Despite an apology, Unity may still struggle to win back any good will.

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