Epic Games has announced that Unreal Engine 4 is now available to everyone for free, and that all future updates will be free as well.
Here is what they had to say about it,
You can download the engine and use it for everything from game development, education, architecture, and visualization to VR, film and animation. When you ship a game or application, you pay a 5% royalty on gross revenue after the first $3,000 per product, per quarter. It’s a simple arrangement in which we succeed only when you succeed.
This is the complete technology we use at Epic when building our own games. It scales from indie projects to high-end blockbusters; it supports all the major platforms; and it includes 100% of the C++ source code. Our goal is to give you absolutely everything, so that you can do anything and be in control of your schedule and your destiny. Whatever you require to build and ship your game, you can find it in UE4, source it in the Marketplace, or build it yourself – and then share it with others.
DEVELOP IN THE UNREAL ECOSYSTEM
Beyond the tools and source, Unreal Engine 4 provides an entire ecosystem. Chat in the forums, add to the wiki, participate in the AnswerHub Q&A, and join collaborative development projects via GitHub. Buy content in the Marketplace, or build your own and sell it there.
To help you get started, the engine includes a large number of video tutorials and documentation, as well as ready-made game templates, samples, and content.
UNREAL SET FREE
In early 2014, we took the step of making Unreal Engine 4 available to everyone by subscription for $19 per month. We put all of our source code online, available to all who signed up. We flipped the switch and crossed our fingers.
The past year has been a whirlwind for everyone at Epic Games. Our community has grown tremendously. The quality and variety of creative work being done has been breathtaking. When we asked people to submit their projects to be shown this year at GDC, we had the challenge of picking just 8 from over 100 finalists that were all good enough to show.
The state of Unreal is strong, and we’ve realized that as we take away barriers, more people are able to fulfill their creative visions and shape the future of the medium we love. That’s why we’re taking away the last barrier to entry, and going free.
MADE POSSIBLE BY THE COMMUNITY
For those of you who have been with us for the last year, thank you! With your input and participation, we’ve worked insanely hard to make the engine better, more useable and more powerful, releasing 7 major updates and more than a dozen minor updates.
In going free, we’ll be issuing a pro-rated refund to current subscribers for their most recent month’s payment. And, everyone who has ever paid for a UE4 subscription will receive a $30 credit that can be spent in the Unreal Engine Marketplace.
Here is the official announcement trailer:
Source: Official Website