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Unity, Improbable, and Epic Games Spat

A blog post from Improbable discusses heat they are getting from Unity over a terms of service violation that they interpret as saying "all existing SpatialOS games using Unity, including production games and in development games of all developers, are now in breach of Unity’s license terms." Gamasutra has more on this, saying "That means the company will no longer be able to fully support Unity developers, some of whom have been forced to shut down the servers for their SpatialOS projects." A post on the Unity Blog responds by saying Improbable's take on this is incorrect, and that developers should keep working on their SpatialOS games. According to them, this is not a problem that popped up out of nowhere: "More than a year ago, we told Improbable in person that they were in violation of our Terms of Service or EULA. Six months ago, we informed Improbable about the violation in writing. Recent actions did not come as a surprise to Improbable; in fact, they’ve known about this for many months." Calling this "Unity's public relations (and dev relations) blunder," Gamasutra has a follow-up reporting that Epic Games is wasting no time in taking advantage of this by establishing a fund to help developers move away from Unity and towards the Unreal engine and the Epic Games Store:

Epic Games, purveyor of Unreal Engine and the biggest competitor to Unity, said Thursday night that it has partnered with Improbable to establish a $25 million fund to "assist developers who are left in limbo by the new engine and service incompatibilities that were introduced today."

In essence, that means Epic is offering to help pay for game developers to move away from its competitor Unity -- a calculated move that seeks to capitalize on Unity's public relations (and dev relations) blunder.

Epic CEO Tim Sweeney and Improbable CEO Herman Narula wrote that the fund is "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."

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