Pros and Cons of using UE4 vs Free Unity 3D?

Don’t include the $20 fee in UE4. That fee is too generous and tiny to care about.

What would you guys say are the pros and cons of these 2 engines and which a beginner should use first?

And is there any reason a beginner should pick a particular one or is learning one the same as learning the other? like if you are new to programming etc Perhaps a big concern about UE4 is a beefy PC system? but then spending $300 in upgrades is tiny compared to $1500 for Unity PRO?

You dont necessarily need a beefy system for UE4. I’ve been using UE4 on an i5 3570, 8GB RAM, GTX 460, 120GB SSD since Beta and while i cant get 60FPS all the time i can at least work easily without any trouble.

Thats all i can say on this topic since i’ve never used Unity.

Edit: But wait, i can tell you why i had picked UDK instead of Unity back in the days as a beginner and non-programmer; it was Kismet that attracted my attention. :slight_smile:

^ LOL you definitely have a beefy system with exception of the GPU.

Thats one sexy CPU, I have a haswell mainboard with a Pentium G 3220 haswell. Btw when you do rendering and stuff whats the longest you normally wait on your system? what takes the most time to process?

i5 is out of my league but I can upgrade to a i3 haswell in future, because I would need money for RAM and a GPU as I only have 4GB currently and a radeon HD 4870 video card. I am thinking maybe a GTX 750 Ti its only $130 or so.

Just a question though, why do people say Unity is better than unreal engine? they say its much easier and has better documentation etc.

I love my system but no way an i5 3570(not even 3570K) is beefy. :eek: Also you can count SSD as an extra, it mostly boosts up start up, save, load times.

When you build lights it’s the CPU that counts and the more threads you have the better. I’ve just built lights in Realistic Rendering project in high quality for you and it took exactly 5 minutes. And whenever the engine needs to compile 3k shaders for whatever reason it takes about 3-4 minutes, which also uses the CPU.

Say it to my Intel Core 2, 2.1Ghz, GTX 550 Ti, 4GB Ram, No SSD … lol :smiley:
Still have very nice fps and it is usable… just CPU operations like compilation are very slow

Aaah I see. Would you say I could just stick with my Pentium G for now and later on I could invest in a core i3 haswell @ 3.6HZ? Cause I won’t be building anything fancy just learning and getting the basics down since I just started programming in Uni.

Well the benchmark results dont look horrible but then it’s up to you to find out. You can get away with dynamic lighting if what you’ll mostly do is programming. Check out this thread and see if there is anything close to your system.

As far as vs. Unity–Unity free is pretty much useless, because there’s too many things that aren’t available as far as features. Unity Pro is OK, but you’ll have to buy some stuff from the asset store, things like a UI system and materials and stuff like that. It’s very simple–in that there’s not much there, but UE4 is much more fully featured.

well i checked all PCs in that thread

I found one with a GTX 460 and i3 2100 which is sandy bridge? it got 25 fps in viewport.

And the other one thats a i5 2300 sandy bridge but with super good AMD card HD 7890 or something with 60 FPS

Suggests to me I could definitely get away with my current pentium G if I keep things simple and I can get away later on with a fast i3 and new GPU. The AMD in all tests was far better bang for the buck than intel. Example the 6 core AMD was faster than the i3.

They have a new UI system, but that aside I agree… But I already told it to Walking Dead on the Unity forums!..

^ Hi yes you mentioned it to me on unity forums but I wanted to see the feedback from this side what these guys think about it.

I have concluded it matters not which Engine I use as I first need to get the hang of programming and then I can decide. Since UE4 is C++ and I am learning C and C++ I believe I will start with UE4 :slight_smile:

I have been using Unity for quite some time. The only benefits I can really think of is the size of the community and the insane amount of documentation, examples and tutorials.
The marketplace is also much more developed at unity3d.

This will probably change in the future, though.

I don’t regret changing over to UE4…

I used unity for a long time, the only thing unity has up on UE4 in my opinion is the C# and js docs.

Hated working with materials in Unity. They were the bane of my existence.

Well for a start it’s a hell of a lot more stable than UE4 is, I have around 10-15 crashes a day with UE4. From silly things like copying a constant in the material editor or removing a tree, Unity has some **** fine performance tweaking tools and has a solid export pipeline, it also has some juicy middleware like Enlighten and there Fmod style audio thingy. Where it falls down Unity is in the dark ages with most of the tools and tech and you have to rely on the asset store to fill in the gaps, or be prepared to waste a lot of time pulling your sleeves up and grafting away at tools and engine tweaks as opposed to making a game. As it stands right this second you don’t even have basics like a 64-bit editor until Unity 5 comes out…

When UE4 cracks base stability and has it’s performance well and truly optimised, then it’ll become very interesting.

Good to know, don’t get me wrong either here I do prefer Unreal by a huge amount (when it works right :))…

Unreal can perform quite well, if you added the same graphical features in Unity that are there by default in UE4 then it would run at a similar level. Unity starts off so empty.

I’ve used Unity for years, it’s far from just about graphical features. Instantly cut down draw calls on terrain meshes by lowering pixel error and modifying base map distortion, modify a whole system of grass meshes by changing the control resolution. Instant LOD additions and changes, re-merge scripts for mesh binding… Instant frustrum decisions straight on a slider, baked occlusion culling which affects shadow casters with umbra, static batching, GPU skinning etc.

I could easily make a game in Unity that isn’t worlds apart, but performs a lot better and it takes around 30 minutes to hop around and optimise. I got sick of upgrading everything and being at the mercy of it’s former limitations, I couldn’t wait forever… After I built a new lighting system to replace beast because it constantly crashes, that was it, plus it was soooo slow for anything involving lightmapping. It’s replacement is just as bad if not worse… I had all sorts in Unity 4, real time reflections, used PBR via LUX so as said not worlds apart.

There is a reason Unity is popular and I think a lot of people don’t give it credit, just because it comes out the box like a graphical eyesore it doesn’t mean it’s not capable. But to get it up to the level of UE4 it’s too much work and I vowed to make games, not work on engines all the time…

Unity is perfect for smaller games… All engines have pro’s and cons.

I’m very interested to learn about all the performance enhancing features UE4 has, I’ve not gotten to deep into it yet. But from comparing similar setups, one is definatley heavier than the other all things being equal.

The feature difference between Unity Free and Pro was just too much for me, plus having to buy pro for every export you want…

UE4 advantages over Unity

  • Performance!
  • Neat dynamic shadows, especially with 4.5 update today
  • Blueprints are awesome. I don’t use them too much, but holy cow.
  • Material designing is a dream come true! Wow.
  • The integrated tutorial system is simply fantastic.
  • The tab concept for Windows is really great. I’m sure everyone has their preference for how they organize working on a project, but man this is a breath of fresh air.

Unity advantages over UE4

  • C# was nice to have. Plus the scripting system in general. It was very quick to say, make a script that rotated an object, and drop it on a couple of other objects you also want rotating.
  • Performs much better on mobile. Probably just because it has less bells and whistles, but still.
  • Easier to get cool plugins which add new functionality to the editor.

Well the reason we chose UE4 is because of the licensing that best fits our needs.

Our game is being made by members on the team working for free. The goal is to make a old school FPS rebuild of our current game, which we distribute for free. A few on our team are students so they qualify for free subscription and the rest can afford the the subscription fees.

Now the break down.

Follow along

Entity Size Restrictions for Unity Free

OK fair enough.

Legal Entities May Not Use Unity Free with Unity Pro

Ahhh ok so multi tiered pricing.

One User per License


For 1500 bucks you get one seat that with UE4 buys you 75 “just” for the edit environment with any middle-wear solution available for Unity also requiring a fee for each seat. Assuming you are making a commercial product it get expensive real fast when you look at the hidden costs.

Streaming and Cloud Gaming Restrictions

OK kiss half you market potential goodbye.

Embedded Software Restriction

WOW enough said.


The comparison Epic wants to help you make a game and only be rewarded for their efforts once you start selling your game that does not use hidden cost pricing where Unity Pro keeps hands on your wallet Unity gets paid, Epic is gambling that their efforts will pay off.

On the other hand Torque 3D is the best deal if you are willing to put up with lack luster tools and messy code (at least that’s what our coders tells us)

On the flip side if happy with Unity stick with it.