An update on Unity's new pricing plan for 2024, and my humble thoughts!

At the time of writing this Unity seem to be planning to announce an update, a satisfactory one from the looks of things, they posted this statement:

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 days. Thank you for your honest and critical feedback.

Why do I say “satisfactory”? They used the words confusion and angst, meaning they do recognize that the new plan is a bit complex and a simpler and easier to understand plan is better to avoid any confusion.

But the more interesting word they used is “angst”, which is a feeling of deep anxiety or apprehension about something, often accompanied by a sense of uneasiness or existential dread. It tends to be more abstract and philosophical, often associated with questions about the meaning of life or one’s purpose. In the context of game developers whose livelihood depends on the Unity game engine, significant changes in pricing or policies by Unity that could impact their ability to sustain their work could indeed generate a deep sense of existential unease. In this case, the unease is not purely philosophical but tied to real-world concerns about the sustainability of their career and livelihood.

So with Unity using a strong word such as “angst” I believe they will radically change or retract the new plan and form a better one that addresses all the concerns voiced by the community.

What do I think personally?

First I think it’s important to know that Unity was in deep financial troubles for years now, they made profit only in the last fiscal quarter out of years, so I didn’t see the new pricing plan as pure greed, it was indeed made to make more money but not out of greed but to save themselves as business. So I was more sympathetic regarding their situation, don’t get me wrong, a pricing plan that could make devs bankrupt is terrible and should be changed, but I do agree and support a new plan that’s designed to make more money to save themselves, as long as it doesn’t harm users. Afterall Unity was incredibly cheap for what it offers, Godot is nowhere near Unity in terms of tech and capabilities, and UE5 is only better in the photorealism aspect, Unity remains powerful and easy to use in pretty much all other aspects, and it’s clear with how dominant it is, around 50% of ALL games are made with Unity. So I do believe Unity have the right to price their product a little bit higher than it was to save itself and stay operational. Many big studios also expressed the same sentiment, saying they oppose the new plan because it’s full of loopholes that can be exploited but are okey with a new plan designed to make more money as long as it’s safe and clear and immune to abuses from bad actors.

Lastly I want to briefly talk about some things I heard from other studios, the most dominant one being Unity needs to be cheaper or completely free because the studio’s profit margin is so thin, such studios seem to be developing simple games but they burn so much cash in doing so in my humble opinion, just because it takes you $10K to make a gameplay system that can be made with $500 doesn’t mean you’re entitled to have the engine for free or for cheap.

Another instance is some studios are trying to prove how the new pricing plan is bad for them while their math is completely off, I’ve been given an estimation of 200K USD in revenues and the fees calculated are over 1M USD, the studio mentioned they’re using Unity Pro and that alone should make them exempt from paying a single $ until they cross $1M in revenues & 1M installs. Under no circumstances they’d pay $1M on $200K of revenues. But their accounting was just that terrible.

So I do believe whatever Unity will come up with next, first it’ll be easy to understand to avoid confusion, it’ll be solid, free of abusable loopholes and predictable to plant a sense of security in developers when using the product, and lastly I do believe it’ll be more expensive, because like I explained before they need cash to stay operational and Unity was already incredibly cheap for what it offers, and I believe for such powerful and easy to use engine it’s only fair to value it higher.


It’s worth to notice that they call it “caused confusion”, as if millions of Unity users were at fault, dumbly misunderstanding their vaguely written cashgrab policy.

Unity needs to make more money (and it’s totally understandable that they do), but they cannot do it by retroactively changing the TOS for the existing games and games deep in development - or rather, for the already released versions that are actively in use.

Unless their new TOS (after the “update to the policy”) clearly states that this bs can never repeat and there are clear rules set for every release of Unity that won’t change, I’m afraid this company can never be trusted again.


Why do I feel we are being bamboozled due to the convoluted and confusing text, knowing good and well there is going to be another hidden fee somewhere deep in the user agreement, you know, tucked in there nice and cozy for all to overlook, just waiting to pop out like a jack in a box. Do we need to hire an expert on user agreements to read and sift through the fine print that might, again, cause “confusion and angst”? Developers worst jump scare


First I think it’s important to know that Unity was in deep financial troubles for years now, they made profit only in the last fiscal quarter out of years, so I didn’t see the new pricing plan as pure greed

Not only do you not cite this, but not making a profit doesn’t mean your company is in deep financial trouble. At all. Amazon didn’t make a profit for what, decades? Businesses will operate in the red intentionally while they expand, keeping themselves afloat on money from VCs and loans with low interest rates.
No, this isn’t about deep financial trouble. Their choice to operate at a loss could be intentional, a strategy, to focus on new products, expansion, etc, that will make them more money. It’s a viable strategy.

I don’t see that as encouraging verbiage, it sounds like it came right out of “Gaslighting for Dummies”. While I hope that you are right, I think there’s a lote of cope here.

“Oh, you must be confused about what I mean” is extremely typical for abusers in toxic relationships to use when they’re caught in a lie or doing something they shouldn’t.

And “angst” may well have that definition- but the term is largely reserved in the vernacular as a pejorative to dismissively describe the sort of emotional turmoil experienced by teenagers. For example, “Ugh, stop whining. You sound like an angsty teenager.”

Overall, there isn’t anything to imply they see anything wrong with what they did, they seem to be brushing it off as a communication issue at best.

(BTW, if they’re hemorrhaging money, why was their CEO compensation >$10 million?)

The confusion here is purely just not understanding the plan, I gave an example near the end of a studio that was kind enough to share their data with me, they were complaining that they’ll have to pay over $1M in fees on a $200K revenue, and their math was completely off, the confusion here I think is simply people not understanding the new plan and when and how it’ll be applied. The new plan doesn’t require an accountant to understand in my humble opinion but Unity saying “we apologize for the confusion” means they do realize many would prefer something simpler like a percentage share…

Everyone understands Unity needs to make money, there is no issue with that, and no one is arguing that unity shouldn’t be able to make money. The problem is the math just doesn’t come out right in many instances.

Suppose I am a hobbyist (using the personal / unity+ version) and I make a game and sell it for 10 cents. It’s just a silly game, but it takes off as a huge success. I sell 2 million copies. That means I made 200-K gross revenue. But Unity says I have to pay 400-K to them (2 million copies at 20 cents a copy). I have to pay them MORE than I made for the game.

That’s just 1 scenario. Not to mention they’ve already stated re-installing on the SAME computer counts as an additional install. So someone already purchased the product, buys a new computer and installs their PURCHASED product, I (the developer) now have to pay for a product I already paid for. Let’s not even get into the repercussions of a disgruntled employee or scammer who decides to create a mass install bot to rack up 20 million installs on a game that only costs 1 dollar, when I have only sold 300,000 copies.

There’s so many things that could go wrong with the new pricing plan, that’s what has people in such a frenzy.

I would like to see Unity copy Epics fee structure for Unreal Engine. Provide a single product for everyone, no more pro level subscriptions. All features unlocked, and charge a flat 5% fee on all games that earn over $100,000. I understand that Epic starts charging at $1 million, but I’m willing to go lower.

They just updated their new pricing plan, you can find it here:
Changes to pricing and Unity plans 2023 FAQ | Unity

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This forum section is for feedback on Unity Discussions, not Unity proper. There is a thread on the Forums if you still have feedback about the updated plans.