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Are we at the mercy of content developers for version updates?

I have been browsing the marketplace and purchasing things here and there.

Now i have come across several items that are not up to date.

One specific item i have been keeping track of to see if it gets updated. In the comments the devs comments that the update is coming next week. That comment is now 4 weeks old.
Another item i found was not updated beyond 4.8.

This has gotten me worried.

  • Is there nothing that guarantees version updates?
  • Can marketplace items just get abandoned?
  • And you are just out of luck if you have purchased a specific item and it no longer has dev support?

I cannot give you an official reply, but as a content developer, I can say that Epic rules as I understand them are that the content should be compatible with the current and previous version of the engine. When a new version of the engine is released (or nearing release), we are supposed to test our content with it and submit updates if needed. It is stated that the content somewhere in the guidelines can be taken down if the content is not working in a newly released version (I seem to remember within 10 days).

So there’s nothing that really guarantees version updates because Epic can only control availability on the marketplace - the content developers are all independent unless it is an actual Epic item. Therefore, items could be abandoned, though they should eventually fall off the marketplace and, if you buy one that you find isn’t working, you can contact Epic about it to resolve the issue. Your best bet if you have doubts is to contact the content developer of something you are interested in.

Marketplace creators are meant to either update their content to the newest version within 10 days of it’s release, or contact Epic letting them know that they are working on it. Abandoning content is a good way to get it taken down from the marketplace, and if you see something that is not updated (Still on like 4.9, etc.), I suggest you contact Epic, so that they can let the content creator know.

You might buy a package that is not updated since 4.8 but it still works fine in 4.11.
Updating is a requirement only when the package is not fully functional with newest engine version.

Point being, if it’s working, don’t expect update on it. If it’s not working report to epic and apply for a refund. They will ask the seller to update the package and make it fully functional or they will take it down.

Content creators should still contact Epic to let them know that it is compatible with the latest version though.

Generally, it’s possible to “add to project” content that is developed for previous engine versions, and the engine will auto-upgrade the content.
99% of the time, that works fine. After all, that’s about the same as opening a project saved with a previous version of the engine, which better work or we’d all be stuck in the past!

OP having a package that’s not marked compatible with any version above 4.8 makes me wonder if Epic really cares about the engine version compatibility.

The ten days requirement has seemingly been changed back to 30 days actually. And it is important to remember that the delay may not be the developers fault, but due to a large queue of other projects looking to get updated. This has been known to happen very often.

The 10 days are indeed confirmed to be more like 30 days, however even if we submit within 30 days there is a whole stash of updates for Epic to go through so it takes time to update as @SE_JonF said.
As for the 4.8 project/pack, this can be something Epic knows and for some reason they allow it but there’s no real way of knowing that if you’re not the pack creator or the Epic Marketplace team. Or they’re just not aware of it.

But Epic does care about updates.