Unity’s new monetization schemes is hurting both developers and customers, and one example of it is BallisticNG‘s cancelled Nintendo Switch port.
On a Steam news post, developer and publisher of BallisticNG, Neognosis, has said the following:
Moving forward after the Unity debacle
First off, let’s get straight into why you’re reading this:
There’s been concerns about the Unity changes killing off new and existing games, so first off: BallisticNG is not going anywhere.
However, Nintendo has a rolling Unity version requirement for game releases and we’re already behind the threshold by two years. 2 weeks ago this wouldn’t have been an issue, no doubt there’d have be some pains in updating BallisticNG to a new version of Unity again, but it would have benefited us in the long run.
By the time we’ll have a Switch version of BallisticNG ready, the threshold for Unity versions will exceed the new versions that Unity are pushing their TOS changes with, and we currently have no confidence that they won’t try pulling another move or pushing back to their original plans under / beyond this new TOS.
The Switch port is cancelled
Despite Unity’s efforts to recover after their PR disaster, there just isn’t any trust and security for us to continue moving forward with newer versions of their tools in the foreseeable future.
It comes with much frustration and disappointment that we’re announcing the cancellation of the Switch version. Several years of development has gone into preparing BallisticNG technically for the port while maintaining the usual output of updates for the PC version, so this comes as a big kick in the balls to both us and everybody else who was excited for this version of the game. We’re sorry that it has turned out this way, and we’ll be looking at working with the console (or the rumoured Switch 2) in a future project not bound by Unity.
We’ll still be moving forward with 1.3.3, 1.4 and continued content support, and we look forward to bringing in community members for content development again in the future for that.
What this means for us
Many developers have made statements about the changes and more likely will. As one of the much smaller devs we’ve waited for the storm to settle before making an announcement.
What’s important to us is that we can continue to provide support for BallisticNG, even if in a year we’ll need to be stomaching an over 4x cost in engine licensing fees with the Pro license.
We’re currently running a Plus license and have no trust in Unity to want to update to a new version of the engine where we’ll be operating under their new TOS. We like to keep the Unity splash screen out of the game because of it’s (now even more) negative reputation. Since the Plus plan is going away and the changes to the Personal license don’t apply to previous versions, our only option for this is that 4x cost in fees mentioned above.
For now we’re sticking with Unity 2020 to continue providing support for BallisticNG, but we’re evaluating other engines for future projects.
For those not in the loop, Unity’s new monetization policy will charge developers every their game is installed, which has greatly affected the trust that the public had in the platform.