I was wondering if the Unreal Engine 4 game developers license was really free to download? I was also wondering if it is free to use for projects and in demo reels?
Yes it is really free to download. You will not have to pay anything if you meet the criteria below. Meaning for hobby projects, demo reels, personal showcases you will not have to pay royalties.
From the Unreal Engine EULA: EULA - Unreal Engine
"However, no royalty is owed on the following forms of revenue:
- The first $3,000.00 in gross revenue for each Product per calendar quarter;
- The first $5,000,000.00 in gross revenue for each Product from the Oculus Store;
- Consulting fees or work-for-hire fees which are non-recoupable for services performed using the Licensed Technology (e.g., an architect-created walkthrough simulation or a contractor-developed in-house training simulator);
- Revenue from an Unrestricted Product, including for clarity, revenue from a Product which solely relies on the Licensed Technology for production of non-interactive linear media (e.g., broadcast or streamed video files, cartoons, or movies) and which is Distributed in a form that does not contain the Licensed Technology or, in order to deliver, rely on servers running the Licensed Technology;
- Revenue from a Product which is only Disributed to Engine Licensees (such as through the Marketplace);
- Revenue from ancillary products which are not software and which do not contain embedded information (such as QR codes) which affects the operation of the Product (e.g., comic books, soundtracks, apparel);
- Financial winnings generated by awards for the Product;
- Revenue from donations for a Product which are not tied to Product access or in-Product benefits;
- Revenue from interactive amusement park rides which use the Licensed Technology; and
- Revenue collected from an end-user buyer of in-game items or other in-game content for your Product which is sold by an end-user seller and which is actually paid to the end-user seller and is not retained by you or any other party."