Picking the right game virtual reality engine is super important for development. Choosing Unity versus Unreal, it's a big decision.
Each has its own important features, and choosing the one that fits your needs is key. Whether you're making a VR game, this choice can affect how well everything works.
So, it's worth taking the time to figure out what features matter most for your project and making the best call between Unity and Unreal.
According to Statista, the VR industry is experiencing rapid growth, with the global market size anticipated to grow from just under 12 billion U.S. dollars in 2022 to over 22 billion U.S. dollars by 2025.
The projected expansion is expected to benefit both the enterprise and consumer sectors, particularly with the heightened development of the VR gaming industry. Is Unreal Engine harder than Unity ? And what to choose? Let's find out.
Unity vs Unreal Overview
Unity is user-friendly, while Unreal is known for stunning graphics and is popular for big projects. The best choice depends on the project's specific needs. What would you choose?
Unity is user-friendly, suitable for both new and experienced Unity VR developers;
It can be used for various devices like mobile and desktop;
The engine has a big community, so there's a lot of support and resources available.
Unreal is great at making things look super realistic and visually impressive;
The engine has a cool visual system called Blueprints for designing game logic without coding;
It's widely used for big games and movies because of its advanced features.
Unity has different pricing plans for various needs. Whether you're working alone or in a team, Unity has options to choose from.
Let's look at Unity's pricing to find the best fit for your project.
Unity Personal is designed for individuals and small organizations with a revenue and fundraising total of less than $100,000 in the past 12 months.
Unity Personal is a free plan that provides access to all the engine's features but comes with some limitations. While it offers the full capabilities of the engine, there are restrictions to consider.
This plan does not include support and training, and it integrates with only one collaboration tool.
Starting from September 12, 2023, new subscriptions for Unity Plus are no longer accepted. I must say that this caused quite a resonance on the forums, as it was the cheapest option where you can remove the Unity logo.
Unity Plus was priced at $399 per user annually and offered additional cloud service features compared to Unity Personal.
With Unity Pro, you get special access to their advanced real-time 3D platform. It's the engine behind over half of all video games globally and is at the forefront of innovation in AEC and manufacturing.
Unity Pro is priced at $1800 per user annually, offering heightened flexibility and an expanded toolkit compared to the previous plans. It includes advanced cloud diagnostics, a premium package of artistic resources, and a dedicated support team, providing users with a more comprehensive development experience.
One significant advantage of Unity Pro is the absence of revenue-related restrictions. Unlike the lower-tier plans, Unity Pro allows developers to harness the engine's full potential without limitations based on their project's annual income.
The extended cloud diagnostics and premium artistic resources can significantly enhance the creation of VR content. For those serious about VR development and seeking a premium, unrestricted experience, Unity Pro is a perfect choice.
Unity Enterprise starts at $4,000 per month for 20 seats, and you can customize packages for more seats as needed. It provides the same tools as Unity Pro but goes further by offering technical support, personalized training programs, and additional features for creation. Additionally, it includes a dedicated customer success manager.
TOP VR Games made with Unity
VR development in unity is changing everything. Put on your headset, and experience a whole new world without leaving home. We've picked the TOP three VR games made with Unity, give them a try!
Superhot, created by the SUPERHOT Team in 2016, offers a unique twist on the first-person shooter genre. Time moves only when you do â€“ standing still freezes time, requiring strategic planning for your next move. Armed with the ability to shoot red figures, the game combines atmospheric beauty with intense gameplay, best experienced with an Oculus headset and controllers.
Beat Saber gained significant popularity in 2020 during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Developed by Beat Games in 2018 using the Unity game engine, the game requires players to slice through colored blocks using neon sabers, with the blocks moving in sync with the chosen song's beat. Initially released for Windows, Beat Saber expanded to PS4 in its first year. Facebook's acquisition of Beat Games in 2019 allowed support for Quest VR headsets, but third-party VR headsets like HTC Vive, Valve Index, and WMR still support the game.
Fruit Ninja, a top-ten downloaded game on iOS and Android since 2010, took a leap into VR in 2016.
Developed by Halfbrick Studios Pty Ltd using the Unity game engine, the VR version offers an immersive 3D experience. Playable on HTC Vive and Oculus Rift headsets, the goal remains the same: slice incoming fruits with blades to score points, maintaining the essence of the original mobile game.
Unreal Engine is free for everyone to download and use. It's a great choice for students, hobbyists, and indie developers. Filmmakers, VFX artists, virtual production pros, and architects can also use it without spending any money.
And yes, you can use an unreal engine for VR.
Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney recently announced that Unreal Engine will introduce charges for non-game development usage. The exact price is yet to be disclosed, but Sweeney assures it will be reasonable, possibly in the range of Photoshop ($5 per month) or Maya ($100 per month). However, whether it leans closer to $5 or $100 is still uncertain. The good news is that Unreal Engine will continue to be free for educational and low-budget use.
If you make a game or app using Unreal Engine and it makes more than $1 million, Epic Games takes a 5% fee from the earnings. This fee is paid every quarter if the product is still for sale or makes over $10,000 in a quarter.
Big developers can talk about a special deal for Unreal Engine. Depending on their project's size, they might pay less or no royalty fee. But, this deal is only for developers with projects that can make a lot of money.
Unreal Enterprise Program
The Enterprise Program is for non-gaming professionals who want extra support and special terms. It costs $1,500 USD per seat per year.
TOP VR Games made with Unreal
Is unreal VR development possible? Of course it is, we will show you some great examples of released games.
Belgian developer Cyborn B.V., known for 3D animation, expanded into virtual reality with Hubris, a highly praised VR first-person shooter featuring great graphics. It received awards, including Upload VR's Favorite New PC VR Game for 2022.
The Dark Pictures: Switchback VR, a horror rail shooter by Supermassive Games, utilizes eye-tracking on PlayStationÂ®VR2. It draws inspiration from The Dark Pictures anthology, offering fresh scares from its first-season games.
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners - Chapter 2: Retribution
Following the success of The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners in 2020, the sequel, Chapter 2: Retribution, enhances the experience with overhauled features. Released on Meta Quest and Pico 4 in December 2022 and coming to PlayStation VR and PlayStationÂ®VR2 in March, it brings an immersive VR experience with a revamped damage system, new night mode, and a deeper story.
Summarizing everything about VR Development for Unreal & Unity
So, unity or unreal for VR?
VR development with Unreal Engine and Unity offers unique advantages for creators.
Unreal Engine, known for its stunning graphics, employs the visual scripting system called Blueprints.
On the other hand, Unity stands out with its user-friendly interface and support for multiple platforms. The active community ensures developers have access to assistance and resources. Unity's pricing model includes free and paid plans tailored to different project scales.
What is the best game engine for VR?
In deciding between the two, consider factors like the graphical requirements, ease of use, and community support. Unreal's royalty model contrasts with Unity's varied pricing plans, providing flexibility for developers.
Additionally, Unreal's custom licensing allows negotiation for fees and terms, catering to larger development needs. Ultimately, the choice depends on the specific needs and preferences of the developers, shaping the VR experiences they aim to create.