Would you use UDK to make an indie game?

Discussion in 'Indie Business' started by Charli3, May 7, 2010.

  1. Charli3

    Charli3
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    Hi,

    Not long ago UDK was released... that was huge and all.
    Here is the thing: I would love to use it for my games...
    BUT I don't think that it's viable.
    Sure the game will probably be better (let's be honnest, the Unreal Engine 3 is awesome), but it limits the game to PC. If I'm right you can count 35% of the sales for linux/mac. So I don't think that it would be very interesting from a marketing standpoint.

    So to sum up
    + : Better game (easy & powerful, so I'm not talking only about graphics)
    + : Easy to do (probably less development time)
    - : 35% less sales
    - : 25% royalties + 2000$

    What's your opinion about it? Is it viable?

    Thank you
    ++
     
  2. Reactor

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    I foresee many differing opinions on this. But anyway, here's mine!

    I've heard things to the contrary.

    Sure, why not. I think the question to ask about UDK though is- what advantages does it have over the competition (Shiva, Unity, etc) that the average indie can take advantage of? For example, do you have the time to take advantage of (and master) the CSG level editor? Do you have need for Speedtree, or have the ability to create or buy assets that can take advantage of the facial animation stuff?

    I don't really see too much more of a reason to use UDK, other than for high-end art asset management, and I doubt many indies really have a need for that kind of thing. Then there's the issue of how it all works- it was pretty much designed for one type of game, and so trying to pull off anything outside of that box is (getting back to what I heard) challenging.

    Aside from a few high-end graphical tricks, I'm not sure where the power of UDK is...or at least, not compared to the competition.

    EDIT:

    Where'd that stat come from?
     
  3. luggage

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    I wouldn't bother personally and would just go with Unity.
     
  4. Bad Sector

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    I would develop my engine actually (or maybe a game-specific engine), but if i had to choose i would choose Unity instead of UDK because it seems easier to use, its more portable and seems to have less system requirements. Also i'm not sure i could get advantage of whatever UDK has over Unity from an artistic point of view :)
     
  5. Adrian Lopez

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    For indies, I too think Unity is a better choice. Licensing costs, ease of use and platform support make Unity a more attractive choice.
     
  6. electronicStar

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    UDK is only viable if you want to make a high end 3D game that uses all the power of the engine, otherwise the 25% becomes a bit hard to swallow and you have other cheaper options available.
    As for all the Unity drones I'm pretty sure most of them don't know anything about the unreal engine so take people's opinions with caution.
    The unreal dev pipeline is one of the best that exists and unrealscript is really awesome for large complex games (like a RPG for example). People who tell you otherwise will probably be C# fanboys.
    But unreal engine is a bit overkill if you just want to make a match-3 in 3D.
     
  7. Adrian Lopez

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    Your criticism would be brilliant if it weren't so lacking in substance. I'm forced to wonder how your own resume compares to those you are so shamelessly insulting.
     
  8. Nexic

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    25% is just insane. What if your game gets popular and you end up paying $500k/year? Way too expensive.
     
  9. PoV

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    I could think of worse problems to have... like not finishing a game. ;)
     
  10. Reactor

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    I don't understand how it's insane. If you're paying out a lot, you're brining in a lot too. And, if it's UDK that's the difference in not earning much and earning a ton, then it's worth what you're paying out.

    If the percentage was 99%, and you brought in $1mil more than what you'd normally earn from a non-UDK game, again, it's worth sending out the 99% to reap the rewards. That's a stupidly extreme example, but the point is- what's important at the end of the day is your bottom line.
     
  11. Nexic

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    But why give away 25% of that when you could of been giving away only 0.02% with another engine? Unless you are making a game that absolutely has to have cutting edge graphics, I really don't see the point in incurring such an a large and and unnecessary cost.

    I'd argue that only being able to deploy to one platform, no browser version and requiring the user to have a more powerful PC is likely to lose you far more sales than any of the other features could possibly bring in.
     
    #11 Nexic, May 9, 2010
    Last edited: May 9, 2010
  12. ecruz

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    Unreal Engine 3 is awesome, the question is are you awesome enough to use it ?
     
  13. Reactor

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    Because, as I said, if UDK was the reason you pulled in $1.5 million/year, it'd be worth it. The point was that UDK's pricing makes sense if you're looking to do what you mentioned (next quote) and can make teh big moneys because of it.

    I agree.
     
  14. ChrisP

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    Get out. :rolleyes:

    I've never written a line of C# in my life. I have, however, written a few bits of Unrealscript in my time, and I have not been terribly impressed. The most that can be said for it is that it mostly works - but if you ever want to do anything slightly complicated, especially in terms of data manipulation, you're much better off using a real language. Which is why Unreal licensees tend to do a lot of work in C++... but guess what, I just realised that's exactly the feature you're missing in UDK!

    I shudder at the thought of writing a whole game in Unrealscript. Yuck. That alone makes UDK a non-option for me.
     
  15. Adrian Lopez

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    Didn't Unreal Engine use to cost about half a million per title? If you're pulling in $1.5 million a year per game for at least a couple of years, you're actually paying more than you would have under the old licensing terms. The greatest advantage, of course, is that you don't have to put up that much money up front. For some, that might be a worthwhile tradeoff.
     
  16. luggage

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    Indeed, the UDK is good if all you want to do is something very very much like Gears of War. Move away from that and you're in a world of pain.
     
  17. Reactor

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    I thought it was more than that, but I'm not completely sure. I think there is, along with the percentage payment option, the ability to purchase a license for the engine outright (with some perks in the way of docs, if things haven't changed since I last looked).
     
  18. Game Producer

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    To answer to the first question...

    You sort of answered this:
    Don't know why, but if you think it is not viable... then it probably isn't. ;)

    (Although I don't know why one couldn't use it)

    My suggestion would be: try it out. Spend some time trying out things and see if you can make anything sensible with it.

    (P.S. What Nexic says makes sense.)
     
  19. Charli3

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    Thanks for all your answers!

    Actually I already have a good understanding of unrealscript and I think it is very good (even if not very simple).
    But you have a point about the real necesity (or not) of cutting age graphics...
    Besides, I just tried Unity and it seems very flexible and easy to use... I'm quite impress! Not to mention that there will be the version 3.0 soon.
    Featuring pc + mac + Xbox360 + ps3 + Wii + everything else compatibility + some graphics improvements + ... I guess it will become a really interesting option !

    At the moment, my conclusion is that udk must be use ONLY if you need killer graphics. But even in this situation, the limitations of distribution and the price make it very risky. Besides, making an indie game that focus on graphics doesn't seem like a very intelligent choice. In brief... forget about it (So saaaad :rolleyes: )

    Don't hesitate to correct and complete :)

    ++

    ps : for udk license, you can go to full license if your sales are really (really!) good (It's more than half millions $)
     
  20. schizoslayer

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    There's alot of "I heard" and "I reckon" in this thread.

    I'm probably the only person who frequents these forums whose actually using UDK to make an Indie game.

    25% royalties is more than worth it when you consider that my game currently looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    http://www.moddb.com/games/waves

    I haven't had to write a single piece of engine level code.
    I have an art pipeline that lets me author content incredibly quickly (Mostly particle effects in my case).
    It's integrated with Steamworks.
    It has both local and network multiplayer out of the box.

    I can't say whether it's better than Unity as I gave up on Unity after about ten minutes but I can say that it's alot easier than making an engine from scratch if that isn't something you're interested in.

    I do have an advantage though. I've been working professionally with the Unreal engine for nearly 10 years now. Your mileage may vary.
     

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