Unreal Engine 4 - Royalty Free for Linear Media

Published: 03/17/2015 8:59 pm

Astounding. I'm sure that the Internet is ablaze with the release of Unreal Engine 4 for free to the world. It's also common knowledge that the only payment (other than their cut on the assets store I'm sure) is 5% of revenue one makes from one's paid-for game. All free games are royalty free. That's just the tip of the iceberg of this wonderful gift to the electronic world. According to the FAQ not only are "Free Games" royalty free, but so is all linear media whether for profit or not (as well as standard arcade games, unusually). 

What does this mean? Simply put, if you "tell a story" (i.e. make a video, or use screenshots of your content rendered in UE4) you don't owe them a dime (although I'd certainly give credit to their hard and intensive work where credit is due in the credits!). unreal engine 4 for storytellers royalty freeI was watching (well, listening and rewinding when I heard something interesting) the GDC 2015: Creating the Open World Kite Real-Time Demo in Unreal Engine 4 YouTube video when near the end there was a comment and a slide which seriously dropped my jaw: "Royalty free use for all linear content and storytelling." This truly is a gift to storytellers.

Some of the hardest parts of making 3d movies is waiting for the slow render times then having to go back and revise your renders because they don't look 'quite right.' Surly the storyboarding and model creation are difficult as well, but usually that's a one-time deal (once your skills get there) and you can reuse your assets. Most independent animators can't afford a render farm of 10-100 machines to render out frame by frame their assets then attempt composite them all together only to find out that an angle was wrong or a scale was off. No wonder it takes independents many months to make a 2-3 minute short. I'm praying that this will speed up quality content.

I intend to download then learn the editor for linear use to create short introduction videos and perhaps some landscape assets using either Lightwave or Blender then importing them into the UE4 engine. My only question is: how to export the linear rendered in real time in UE4 to MP4 or even high-quality/density screenshots? These are questions I hope to get an answer to tonight after/during I'm downloading the development environment tonight. Heck maybe I'll even learn to create a game (I am a programmer after all)! I'm really hoping I can create stunning visuals of what I imagine Sentry, the Crimson Mountains and maybe even some of the vehicles and characters (although I think that's better left to a real artist).