The universe always needs balance right so to balance this thread puke a bit:
Epic tech is great!!! But Epic as a Corporation??? Not what they used to be!!!
They’ve now morphed into something else. A different kind of monster maybe?
Newer releases of the engine have definitely been very shaky and low quality!
And until UE adds planetary terrain, it will never be the most complete engine.
It’s by far the most complete (publicly available) game engine out there. Just because it doesn’t have the one specific feature you need doesn’t change anything about it. Yes, the recent releases leave something to be desired in terms of stability and reliability, but you can’t really blame them for going fast and breaking things in pursuit of the leap that UE5 is. I am sure it will even out once UE5 is out and there will be significant stabilization/polish pass.
Epic is by far the most customer/consumer friendly corporation I’ve seen in my life. All the other corporation business models I’ve seen so far are based on exploiting the customer. Epic has completely unique strategy of empowering the customer to succeed and then taking a minor portion of the success, but only if the customer success is extraordinary ($1M+ revenue). Show me any other company of a corporation size that has anything close to this pro-customer strategy.
The biz terms are generous. But you can detect a more corporate shift at Epic since 2017, which borders on: indies please go away. Responses to support questions have been the worst ever (even for critical bugs - see here or here). Community Managers are the most hands-off ever. But Epic are happy to keep on having Indies be cheerleaders for them and the engine, and to post bug reports ofc (when the bug report form works:rolleyes:). Overall longer term, I suspect Epic will look to Enterprise to set the future direction of the engine NOT game devs (just a gut feeling).
Hey mates! Thanks very much for replying. Really appreciate it!
Thanks Rawalanche! Well said mate! Often in my thoughts I compare Epic to other games companies with Proprietary Engines, such as EA and Ubisoft. EA and Ubisoft could release their engines for public use while still making their games. But they choose not to, in order to try to keep some kind of competeitive edge. While Epic decided to release their engine to the community - which helps people and also helps Epic. And in this respect Epic have a thousand times surpassed both the business and ethical model of these other companies.
A lot of people say that Epic only give away their Engine to make money, and they only give Megagrants to make money, and they only give Free Assets to make money. But to me this is an utterly stupid and scinical point of view.
I really believe that Epic Invest in developers because Epic loves Game Development and want to share that joy and exciting journey with others. And I don’t think that’s a business move (It is that too) I think it’s a Humanist move, because Tim Sweeney and the other excellent people at Epic want to share their amazing work with everyone!
If you love something. Set it free. <3
I really believe that Epic is the best Game Company cos they are really good, kind, honest, decent, and not greedy people! And from my point of view, with Unreal Engine they have given tthe community a truly amazing gift, for which I will, personally, be eternally grateful.
That being said… hehe.
To answer SavageBeasty and UnrealEnterprise. I’m not saying that Epic are perfect. Of course not. But who is?
I would love to see Planetary Terrain!! - All systems go!
And hey, I’m not a Fortnite fan. I dont play Fortnite, and it doesnt interest me personally. But I can see that Fortnite brings joy and fun to millions of people around the world. And although it’s not my kind of game, I think it’s awesome that Epic a game that is loved by so many people all over the world.
That being said, I agree with SavageBeasty, that Epic should also invest in making their own Unique IPs and Games. I’d love to see more of that. I’d love to see Epic creating and making more of their own games! Maybe Epic could make a Game out of the Female Character and tech seen in the UE 5 Tech demo.
It sure would be awesome to see Epic making their own games again!
Hey look. No-ones perfect. But I believe in Love and Kindness. And I see genuine Love and Kindness in Epic’s business model, and I think that’s awesome!
And that’s why I love Epic Games! <3
Epic Gave $1,000,000 to Blender Foundation!!
It brings me a lot of happiness to work with and work with the technology of a company who are really doing The Right Thing in Game Development.
Optimism, Positivity and Kindness can go a long way in making everything better!
Here’s Lisa Loeb (A lady Musician from Texas) Singing about Love. <3
To be fair I will say I’ll always be grateful to Epic for letting us have full access to the engine. Before ue4 the options for learning game development were usually hampered by a lack of access to proper decent game engines that the top companies were using. Unless you wanted to make your own engine or pay a million squid for a licence you were usually stuck with rubbish things like FPS Creator/rpg maker, or only having script level access like udk or Cryengine.
To give anyone full source code access is pretty mind blowing really in this age of corporate greed. Personally I’d have never attempted to learn c++ before this engine came along so I owe Epic alot. Probably learnt more in the few years ue4 has been about than I did in the all the years before it.
Can you imagine Rockstar or EA giving away any form of access to their engines let alone source code…
Majority of AAA engines suck to work with; they are convoluted, unfinished, and usually not integrated (you have to launch several executables, each for different game dev tasks)
This integrated environment is a thing that Epic have been pushing for the past decades. Also absorbing a few things from Unity along the way as well.
If you’re aspiring game developer, you would have to build your own just like everybody else who couldn’t afford a license to Unreal Engine or iDTech… I built my own frankensteins too, until Microsoft decided to back the XNA project and Unity released for Windows.
Epic’s 1M donation to Blender foundation, combined with other heavy weight supporters, kickstarted a cascade effect… Commercial DCC tools still trying to compete were forced to offer more affordable options:
Definitely good news to anyone whose ever wanted to give the finger to Autodesk / Adobe rent-seekers and their greedy $ubscription-models.:mad: But Epic also gave a quarter mil to Godot, which will likely have an even greater real impact. Godot already feels close to Unity 4.x or early Unity 5.x. Working in sci-fi genre at least, so maybe not quite there yet for a Blacksmith-like Medieval RPG. However, after a 50-100MB download, anyone can be up and running in minutes, as its a really accessible engine, and a neat alternative to Unreal at the lower end. Now if Juan can get the graphics / lighting up to UDK level, what an asset Godot will be…
I’ll take the flip-side of that. I wanted to get away from c++ and overbearing c-style languages. So Blueprints / Kismet are the killer feature. Particularly if you’re interested in gameplay, and not so much rendering / lighting or other low-level details. BP frees you up from that, and frees you from the heavy overhead of normal dev environments, which KILLS CREATIVITY! Working in a normal biz environment maybe it doesn’t matter. But for game dev it does, mainly because everything hangs on gameplay mechanics and visuals and feel. So source access isn’t particularly interesting, its simplicity and getting to the metaverse, that’s the holy grail…
I guess they are victims of their own overwhelming success. So many discussions are happening here on the public forums, that if Epic staff had to pay attention to it, they would not be able to do anything else throughout the day and the engine development would stand still. I have been very fortunate to get UDN access, and I have to say that the level of support there is incredible. Just in a past few months, I have reported several bugs all of which were promptly acknowledged, added to bug tracker and many of them are already solved.
But even if you do not have UDN access, there is still a good old bug submission form, which still works well. The thing with that though, is that you really need to put a bit of time and effort into detailed bug form description and making a good, simplified reproduction project. To make a good, detailed bug report with a good, simplified repro project can take up to 30-45 minutes in some cases, and many people are just not willing to spend that time. In that case, no wonder their bugs don’t get the attention when it’s either in the form of a forum post, which is not a proper channel for reporting bugs, or it’s in a form of a “it doesn’t work” type of a bug report.
I had quite a lot of success with many versions since 4.19. Funnily enough, I always had the most stability, reliability and performance issues with even number releases. 4.21 was great, 4.22 had issues. 4.23 was great, 4.24 had issues, 4.25 is great, 4.26 is quite a bug fest, so with a hope that it’s a rule, I am really looking forward to 4.27
To be honest, I have been here for quite a long time… maybe for 5-6 years to say the least. When I first reached here, I saw a good and thorough support from Epic toward indies in term of answerhub which many were answered in great detail by Epic staffs themselves. And I said to myself… “wow… how long can Epic maintains this kind of support?? It is very generous”. And I knew it wouldn’t be long before the support goes away…
So while it is quite painful to see the support goes away, it makes good sense to me. And it doesn’t mean all bad… it means good stuff - extremely complicated but very capable game engine still fall into the hands of indies (plus all source code to peruse on). And this forum discussion and also facebook group are all good places for us to ask, discuss and answer among each other.
Is that something permanent tied to your own projects, a bonus from a gig connected to a certain client, or is it full-time workplace access??? Because obviously having long-term access to UDN is a huge plus. Especially when Epic diss their own services like AnswerHub as being as useless as Joe The Fortnite streamer… :p
I’ll just leave these three sample LINKS here then, in the interest of keeping the ‘universe balanced’.
But lets agree that your experience is just that, your experience, as it clearly isn’t everyones below.
Could it be that having access to UDN skews your reality or how you view support for everyone else?
I had access to MS support for a long time and it made me a bit blind to the true suffering of others!
Stopped playing the upgrade game, as it started to feel like a thankless sucker’s game tbh. Only some of the new features are genuine game changers, and only to certain devs. Whereas this has wow-factor game changer written all over it. But as with begging for better support, its not easy to convince Epic to add it natively…
100% false argument. Having an AlexPaschall / ChanceIvey point-person around to help funnel issues to the teams concerned, used to serve as a useful line of communication to both sides. Remember, it suited Epic to have the community help stabilize UE4 back in 2014-2016. They were more than happy to get input from the plebs / serfs back then. But there’s a massive gaping hole now between 2014-2016 interaction and now, which means getting almost no meaningful replies back, even to the 2 critical bugs above. WTH, even Unity support is better than that!
By the way, there was a third community manager called Kalvothe around for a while, and he did try to reach out more, so maybe Epic planned to return to the AlexP type model, who knows. But Kalvothe also suddenly disappeared one day, in the same way support fell off a cliff back in 2017. Look, Epic can’t just leave a huge gap between UDN and what is the current forums. What we have right now is a type of post-apocalyptic ghetto! How many Fortnite aspiring devs come over here and are happy to discover hard truths like that. C’mon the current status quo is rubbish!
But overall your point is a faux argument anyway because if everyone at Epic worked on the engine at the same time, you’d have total chaos. Oh wait, that’s the 4.26 release… Look seriously, Epic are expanding internally and externally at the same time. That has to be causing disruption. But don’t take my word for it, here’s Harvard academics on the subject… But to claim that a 28 Billion corp can’t actually hire another AlexP / ChanceIvey / Kalvothe to help filter and channel issues because they’d be missed from working on the engine is a total BS argument!
I wouldn’t call UE the absolute best Game Engine in the World! UE is a jack of all trades (can be +ve and -ve)
UE is has amazing technology which can scale to and for any kind of project, be it game or non game.
UE has lot of features and is a complete engine. There is no other complete engine out there. All others engine have one or two advantage over UE but lacks in every other department. Other public engines, one has better physics and fast landscape which can scale to planet size, but lacks everything else, one has true multithreading and custom physics and thats all, one has nothing but support.
Though unity:( has only less than 1k paying subscribers still they are giving support to free engine users. Though I am able to manage everthing in unreal without any help, there are exceptional cases where I need help around bugs in unreal. I am willing to trade royality only after 1 million for royality for every penny, even 10% royality on revenue for proper support.
No offfence to OP. but personally I am will not vouch for any corp and I consider all these software as nothing but tools which can be changes according to work and as something which can be replaced when something better come along.
POV: full time dev. not an artist, but a programmer. have worked with unity, cry, unreal, and unigine.