Epic Unveils the Future of Unreal Tournament: Crowdsourced and Free

The next generation of Epic’s Unreal Tournament will be crowdsourced and free – not free-to-play, just free.

A week after Mark Rein’s “comeback” teaser, Epic has finally taken the wraps off the future of Unreal Tournament, and an awful lot of unexpected changes are on the table this time around. The studio announced that the next generation of the game will be developed in conjunction with fans, “in the open,” with work beginning today under the auspices of “a small team of UT veterans.” Got an idea? Sign up and jump into the forums. And for those who want to take a more active part, all code and content will be made available to developers via GitHub.

“From the very first line of code, the very first art created and design decision made, development will happen in the open, as a collaboration between Epic, UT fans and UE4 developers,” Epic wrote. “We’ll be using forums for discussion, and Twitch streams for regular updates.”

Speaking of Twitch, the Unreal Engine Twitch channel blew up when Epic announced the price – or, more accurately, the lack thereof. “When the game is playable, it will be free,” the studio said. “Not free to play, just free.” And there will be no microtransactions, either: Money will be made by way of a marketplace where developers, modders, artists and anyone else can buy, sell or just give away mods and other content. Revenues earned through marketplace sales will be split between creators and Epic.

“A lot of this is brand new for Epic, and we don’t yet have everything figured out. Things will probably definitely go wrong from time to time, and when they do, we’ll have to work through them together. There will be a lot of tough decisions to make, and not every feature will make it into the game,” Epic said. “But if you’re a fan of Unreal Tournament, a UE4 developer, or a future modder – or if you just want to learn how we make games – we hope you’ll join us.”

The new Unreal Tournament will be developed for Windows, Mac and Linux-based PCs – no consoles this time – and will be “true to its roots as a competitive FPS.” Epic suggested in the Twitch stream that it will launch with Deathmatch, and that other game modes will be implemented “down the road.”

To find out more about the next chapter of Unreal Tournament and how you can be involved, check out the Unreal Tournament Wiki.

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2 Comments on Epic Unveils the Future of Unreal Tournament: Crowdsourced and Free

theones2k

On May 8, 2014 at 1:39 pm

What does free NOT free to play mean?

-.- WTF

Andy Chalk

On May 8, 2014 at 1:59 pm

“Free-to-play” has connotations of microtransactions, content restrictions, limited access, that sort of thing, and the assumption that sooner or later, you’re going to have to pay if you want the full game. Free, on the other hand, is just that: free. Take it and get out. It is admittedly a fine and fuzzy line, but given that F2P has kind of a ty reputation these days, one I’m not terribly surprised that Epic chose to draw.