I am extremely happy to announce a new program that Epic has kicked off, Unreal Dev Grants. Unreal Dev grants is another way Epic is giving back to the development community and rewarding outstanding projects centered around Unreal Engine 4. Read Tim's blog post on the subject here.
From the website.
WHAT ARE UNREAL DEV GRANTS?
Epic has created a $5,000,000 development fund to provide financial grants to innovative projects built in and around Unreal Engine 4.
Awards range from $5,000 to $50,000, and there are no strings attached: you continue to own your IP, are free to publish however you wish, and can use the grant funds without any restrictions or obligations to Epic.
WHY WOULD WE GIVE AWAY FREE MONEY?
Simply put, we succeed when you succeed. Unreal Dev Grants can give you the boost you need to take your project beyond working prototype. Epic wants to help you focus more on creation and worry less about keeping the lights on.
WHO ARE WE LOOKING FOR?
ANYONE MAKING COOL THINGS WITH UE4
We like games, of course, but we also want to see animated features, architectural visualizations, Marketplace content, mods- anything that will make us say "Whoa." Please send us as much as you can, and working prototypes are best. If you're only at the design doc or scriptwriting stage, keep going.
STUDENTS AND EDUCATORS
We'd love to see class projects, engine extentions, curricula, tutorials, or any other creative or innovative work related to UE4 and education.
If you're using any of the crowdsourcing sites like Kickstarter or Indie Go-go, don't worry, you can still apply for an Unreal Dev Grant. When both work out, you'll be that much further along.
I'M IN! WHAT'S NEXT?
Head over to the Unreal Dev Grants page and tell us about your project. Send us videos, links, and any other info you think will help us see why you and your project are awesome. Remember, things in the design or idea phase are still too early, and working prototypes are best.
Feel free to discuss the program with other Unreal Engine developers here.
F.A.Q.s! (and growing!)
Is there a deadline for submission?
The deadline for submission is directly dependent on the funds remaining in the program. At this point, there is no deadline.
Is this limited to just U.S. Developers?
No! If we can get funds to your country, you are eligible.
Can I apply for more than one project?
Absolutely. If you're making more than one stellar Unreal Engine product, we certainly want to know about it.
Can I apply more than once for the same project?
Sure thing. Don't think of Unreal Dev Grants as a competition, though spamming us probably isn't the best idea either
Does it have to be a game?
Absolutely not. Anything in the engine or relating to the engine is eligible.
So it doesn't even have to be a digital product built in the engine?
Correct. Many ways exist to build something incredible in the Unreal Engine universe. Doing classes, books, etc.? Sounds awesome!
Do I have to be a legal business to receive an Unreal Dev Grant?
No. Individuals are eligible.
Do I have to pay the money back at a later date?
Absolutely not. This is not an investment on Epic's part or a loan - This is our way to give back to the incredible community and reward excellence. No strings attached means no strings attached
Will single developer teams be treated differently than AAA studios?
We strive for fairness and treat every project equally, regardless of who you are.
When will I hear back from Epic? What can I expect?
With the overwhelming number of applications we receive each day, we simply cannot respond directly to each and every submission for Unreal Dev Grants. If we choose your project for an Unreal Dev Grant or If we require more information, you’ll certainly be hearing from us!
Is my non-UE4 project eligible?
The Unreal Dev Grants are only for Unreal Engine 4 related products and projects. If your project is built in another engine or toolset, it will need to be moved to Unreal Engine before it will be eligible for an Unreal Dev Grant.