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I've been struggling for nearly a month to get Skeletronix updated to 4.12

I just don’t feel like I am getting anywhere at all with emailing the marketplace team.

“Thank you for submitting your request. We have received your request and are working on responding to you as soon as possible. If you have any additional information to add to this case, please reply to this email.”

That is the vast majority of responses I get.

I don’t ever get answers to my questions. I don’t ever get confirmation they they have received files I have sent them. I’m 99% sure I haven’t received any emails that were written by a human.

Is this anyone else’s experience or do they just hate me?
I got a message with some huge list of those nonsensical error messages that come from engine files “While compiling your plugin against the 4.12 binary of UE4 for the Windows and Mac platforms, compilation generated errors:”

Ok. Great. Was that on the original version I sent you that was made on 4.9? The version I sent you a few weeks ago? Last week’s version? The version I sent a few days ago?
Since all of my versions have compiled for me without error, I really have no idea what is going on.

“Just reaching out to confirm you’ve received our previous message:”

I’ve sent three emails since your previous message and received nothing besides automated responses.

This really discourages me from wanting to sell content on the marketplace.

Code asset is really complicated to submit.
They will first try to package, your code will NOT be reviewed so they cannot explain to you what was wrong if packaging fails; you must figure out by yourself… Your code will be reviewed only AFTER their packaging process succeeds.
And “sensitivity” of Launcher plugins is different, there are some errors you’ll see only if you download engine source, build and test by yourself. Some errors pass silently in the pre-built engine downloaded from Launcher.
They ALWAYS try to package against latest engine release.
Do not trust pre-built engine to test plugins.

I’ve never tried to create a plugin using the launcher version of the engine, so I wouldn’t really know about that. The big issue here is even though I am getting automatic confirmations of my messages, it feels like they are being ignored.

Too many submissions; if you expect them to “talk” with you they really won’t.
It’s necessary.
Also, the focus of the queue is always on updates. So if it’s a new asset it take a looong time to be reviewed.

Probably EPIC need to spell out their commitments eg all items submitted will receive a feedback at most 5 working days from the submission date etc etc etc… so even though it may be a long, but it is expected.

But they do. After your plugin passes packaging they ask for 7 working days, for code review.

In order for the marketplace to grow, this type of manual process should really be gotten rid of. Just like almost any other marketplace (steam, itch.io, apple, unity, etc) there should at least be a page that uploads your package, can tell you what the status the review is in, allows you to edit price/description, etc… That way you know the status and can enforce a proper queue.

Yeah, but Epic has no experience with this kind of stuff.
And they will always focus on their own games in development first, this is why after 2 years Marketplace didn’t automate most of its processes yet. (also because it is not lucrative judging by Tim Sweeney posts)
And if you consider piracy on top of all issues, is even harder for marketplace to grow better and faster…

Well, the last thing I want is for the marketplace to become the Unity store, but on top of missing out on sales I’m also getting refunds due to my plugin still being stuck on 4.11

If their priorities are elsewhere, that is certainly their decision, but then they should be up front with that, so it will help 3rd party devs know that before they devote a lot of time on their products. As far as it not being lucrative (the 30% cut) this is always a chicken and the egg problem with anything trying to get off the ground. You have to invest in something in order for it to grow, otherwise people will get turned off and it becomes a ghost-town full of junk. Other marketplaces (turbosquid, etc.) seem to do fine and other stores that are tied to competing engines are also generating a lot of business because there is a lot that can be added that is specific to the engine(colliders, lighting, code, etc). At least at this juncture really the only party I think that can be blamed for it not being lucrative is Epic. If they really update their website and address/change some of the issues in the threads from publishers that have been cropping up, I have no doubt the marketplace would take off.

I would love to make some code plugins as well personally, but currently am only devoting a tiny fraction of my time to it since there seems to be a myriad of issues plaguing other publishers. As far as priorities go at least to me personally the following things are really holding the marketplace back and yes it would require investment ($$$) from Epic but without that investment I don’t think the marketplace will ever be that lucrative like that of their competitors.

  1. Manual process submissions/review times- Many things should be automated and the entire process should take less than 2 weeks

  2. Tighten up the refund policy

  3. Automate the binary generation of code plugins from the source provided. Obviously C++ dll paradigm means that very often an engine upgrade will make it so the binaries included will no longer work and currently tons of time is wasted in resubmission. Why? I can take the source and regenerate new binaries locally and then copy these binaries over to the non source version of the engine just fine. Epic should be able to do this in the cloud and thus eliminate 99% of these re-submissions that waste everyone’s time especially the reviewers. Only when there is a breaking change in the API will this fail and they should fire off an email to the publisher if this happens.

  4. If you are going the curation route like Epic claims to you really need to follow through. There is a ton of junk in the store and a ton more that used to be good but no longer works on recent engine versions. This is not good curation. If you want to curate that is fine but you must follow through, otherwise it’s better to not have bothered.

Care to elaborate? Usually, the two main things people dislike about the asset store is either the fact that it’s not curated, or that everything costs too little. From looking at the average price on the marketplace it doesn’t seem really that different and is in the hands of publishers anyways. Curation if done well can at least be sustainable (old school consoles being the best example) but Epic is doing a pretty poor job if curation is their priority. I’m usually a fan of open with good sorting algorithms so the junk disappears, but curation can certainly work if done well. Currently it seems to be in a bad no man’s land.

Or did you mean something else?

Unity’s store is filled with scam.
Here, the only scam happening is coming from criminals using fraudulent payment methods to steal assets from sellers and pirate them.

Do you mean junk? Or actual scams? If it’s junk I’d agree, but does it matter when it’s filtered out and you never see it unless you search? The top pages of every category/subcategory are pretty quality stuff, and the stuff that isn’t either has no reviews or some negative reviews, so that customers for the most part know to stay away.

Did you mean actual scams?

I once bought there RPG monster models…
Just to find out some days later that those models were extracted from a MMO released only in Asia; then had to remove everything from the project.

Yeah, that kind of scam.

Ah thanks for the example and that sucks.

I can’t see anything on the Epic Marketplace that protects you from that type of scam either other than the fact that it’s a smaller market (and thus less targeted). Just like piracy, selling items that you don’t have the rights to is an almost impossible problem to completely get rid of and all you can do is keep fighting to try and minimize it. Right now, Epic seems to average about 20-30 new items per week and Unity has about 2.5 times that per day (so around 20x the amount of new stuff to review and a larger existing library of updates).

It’s a catch 22 because until the Epic Marketplace grows the scammers won’t bother because they can’t scam money out of it, but if the marketplace ever grows the same issue will become a problem here as well. I can say though that for those scams that do get through the human Unity reviewers, that the asset is depublished, the publisher banned, and customers refunded. On the private publishers forum I’d say something like this gets reported every two months or so and is taken down within hours so it’s something Unity is trying to minimize.

From the developer end though, that is always a risk, if the reviewers don’t catch it and no customer including yourself catches it you can be liable in your game. I really despise that some people do this, even more so than normal pirates because it can hurt others.

Hey BlackRang666, I went into your request and it looks like Jake has responded to you a few times in your update email. I am sorry you are not receiving these messages. If you are unable to locate the response from your inbox, check your spam folder to make sure the email is not located there. If you still not receiving anything there, hit me up in a PM and we can figure out what is going on.

You are most definitely not alone.

To take one example of many - the error reports.
Epic have some custom build setup which they use for compiling the plugins, it appears to use Clang in some form and has a much higher level of strictness, with many errors that it’s simply impossible to reproduce on MSVC. But of course, Clang is not yet actually supported for UE4. I asked if there was some way of reproducing their build setup, and was told by the person reviewing my code that they didn’t know anything about the build setup. So the bottom line is, you’re expected to trawl through lines of error output and try to decipher what exactly is causing it with no ability to actually reproduce it. I politely told Epic on multiple occasions that this is utterly insane, but have had no response about it.

Once I actually received a page of errors that were all internal to the unreal automation tool and told to fix them. It had nothing whatsoever to do with my code (which was unchanged from a previous submission which they had successfully compiled). I pointed this out and they realised it was a configuration error on their end.

Jake has sent me several emails, but they are not responses to anything I said or asked. They are just copy pastas.

Yeah, compiling is insane enough as it is. Its like being in a Skinner box set to random. Deleting the intermediate folder made my plugin compile. Adding a float variable set off pages of engine file errors.
I can package a project containing my plugin without error, but using the command they gave me to package the plugin by itself gives me a single error.

I’ve never even used Paper2D. The error makes no sense with anything I have done.

Build the engine, no game project, just the UE4 solution.
Open Editor, make game project, close editor.
Create/move plugin files to the game project’s plugin folder.
.uproject file right click -> generate vs files.
Open game project in VS, set build mode to Development Editor, build.

That is what I do to setup things, after that any new compilation takes like 20 seconds if I only edit plugin files.
I also keep UEditor closed while developing plugins, testing up packaging from time to time.