UDK iOS Support

Discussion in 'Indie Business' started by filharvey, Dec 16, 2010.

  1. filharvey

    Original Member

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    Did people see that today UDK now supports iOS for development.

    Anyone have any UDK experience? What is it like?

    Phil
     
  2. Xiotex

    Original Member

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    All you need to know is that apple take 30% of your revenue to start with and if your game makes over $5000 then Epic will take a 25% cut of your remaining 70%

    Do some math, it may look like a good deal in terms of a first class engine but in business terms it sucks - big time.
     
  3. schizoslayer

    schizoslayer New Member

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    It's not that black and white really.

    The question you have to ask yourself is: Will using UDK net me more sales and/or save me time that will offset the cut Epic takes?

    For me the answer is an overwhelming YES.

    If you look at Dungeon Defenders then you will find a game that was made in less than a year with production values that exceed the majority of content on iPhone because they didn't have to spend any time worrying about hardcore tech problems. They are now reaping the rewards of that with increased sales.

    Bad games will still sell badly and some games don't need what UDK has to offer but if Epic is taking 25% and you're selling twice as many copies then that seems to be a fair deal.
     
  4. meds

    meds New Member

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    The engine looks absolutely stunning on the iPhone, but I've heard it kills the battery life. It doesn't seem like a game could use the UDK unless the player is going to keep it tethered to a charger...
     
  5. Xiotex

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    You obviously haven't done the math on it.

    On a self-published platform then maybe it's worth it but just look at the numbers on IOS:

    If you priced your game at £10 then after Apples cut that gives you £7

    you make more than $5000 so Epic then want to take their 25% which then means your cut drops to £5.25

    That's a hell of a cut.

    Lets try some other numbers:

    £2.99 = £2.09 = £1.56
    £1.79 = £1.25 = £0.93

    And after a while you bow to pressure and drop your price to the inevitable:

    £0.99 = £0.69 = £0.51

    That's around a 51% cut of your proceedings going to somebody else before you get it. Would you normally go for such a deal? Is what UDK gives you (a very narrow genre) worth that cut?

    (somebody check my math, not known to be the best mathematician)
     
  6. schizoslayer

    schizoslayer New Member

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    I have done the math I'm just not stupid enough to gamble on the app store and will be releasing on PC as a primary platform at a much more reasonable price point.

    Then if I feel like it I may also release on iOS and Android (it's already supported but not available to UDK users till early next year) after having made a minor number of changes. But that's a big if.

    I believe Epic are also prodding Microsoft to allow it on Windows Phone 7 as well.
     
  7. jaguard

    jaguard New Member

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    Here's some math for you.
    You make a nice game for iphone using your own engine, sold 1000 copies for $9.99. You earned $7000.
    You made Infinity Blade using UDK, sold 500,000 copies for $9.99. Earned $255,000.

    25% cut is not too much for such amazing piece of technology. Even 50% would be affordable. On the other hand - will you be able to take full advantage of it? Will you make a good game, or better - game that sells? Well, it's up to you.
     
  8. Bad Sector

    Original Member

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    Actually that would be $2,622,375:
    Code:
    Little Interpreted Language Interactive Shell
    # set price 9.99
    # set copies 500000
    # set epic-percent 0.25
    # set apple-percent 0.30
    # set total-sales [expr ${price} * ${copies}]
    # set apple-cut [expr ${total-sales} * ${apple-percent}]
    # set developer-sales [expr ${total-sales} - ${apple-cut}]
    # set epic-cut [expr ${developer-sales} * ${epic-percent}]
    # set developer-final-income [expr ${developer-sales} - ${epic-cut}]
    # print "Total sales: ${total-sales}\nApple's cut: ${apple-cut}\nSales after Apple's cut: ${developer-sales}\nEpic's cut: ${epic-cut}\nDeveloper's final income: ${developer-final-income}\n"
    Total sales: 4995000.000000
    Apple's cut: 1498500.000000
    Sales after Apple's cut: 3496500.000000
    Epic's cut: 874125.000000
    Developer's final income: 2622375.000000
    
    The interesting part?

    You made a Infinity Blade using your own engine, sold 500,000 copies for $9.99. Didn't had to paid $874,125 to Epic, earned $3,496,500 :)

    UDK is not some sort of arcane magic that automatically guarantees sales. It is just some code. The awesome graphics you see are the artists' doing, not UDK.
     
  9. meds

    meds New Member

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    UDK gives artists the ability to create great art. However you do make a point, to have great art in your game you need great artists who know the ins and outs of the trade, and they're expensive buggers.
     
  10. Bad Sector

    Original Member

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    Hmmno. Not at all. Artists can either create good art or they can not. UDK has to follow all the limitations of the platform as any other library/tech/whatever. As i said, it isn't some magical thing. If an artist demands UDK to do something good, then he's not only a bad artist but also an overpriced one since you have to include UDK's price (whatever that ends to be) in the artist's price.

    A good artist can create good/great/whatever-positive-you-want-to-call-it art independent of the engine and despite any limitations. UDK's demos actually prove that :)
     
  11. jcottier

    jcottier New Member

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    I really can't see unreal being worth it for small indies (or even bigger one). To make a nice game with unreal you will have to spent a small fortune on the art (otherwise, what's the point in using UDK in the first place) so your game has a minimum of chances to shine (will be even harder when more shiny looking games will be available). If you only target IOS, it will be extremely hard to get back your original investment. I'll definitely stick with 2D casual games :)

    JC
     
  12. schizoslayer

    schizoslayer New Member

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    I think the key thing there is "If you only target IOS" given that anything you make with UDK for IOS will also work on Android and PC with an incredibly small amount of extra work it would be foolish of you to only release on one of those platforms.

    Doesn't work the other way though: if you target PC then the chances of your game porting easily to IOS or Android are lower as you do have alot of extra cpu grunt to play with. I'm not convinced that Waves will run on mobile devices as once it starts getting hectic even my dev PC starts to slow down.
     
  13. Xiotex

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    That's the bit that surprised me about the video I saw on your site - it appeared to slow down (chug). I have to be honest my first reaction was why you were using UDK to make that game when you could have just as easily have used one of the many other middleware solutions that don't have the same business implications.

    As others have mentioned above, UDK is just a tool to getting your game made, it's not a magic bullet that will suddenly make your game the same quality as Gears of War, you need damn good artists for that.
     
  14. jaguard

    jaguard New Member

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    True, my mistake.

    I must say greed is bad. Casual portals take 80%, and yet
    developers are able to earn enough. You can sell yourself and enjoy a perfect 100% cut from your 20 sales per month.

    Also, there's one important flaw in your example - there's no way you can make UDK quality game without UDK, unless you are John Carmack.

    Very true. But even a brilliant artist will fail without an engine :).

    You can still make next Angry Birds without UDK.
     
  15. Bad Sector

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    I'm sure John Carmack had nothing to do with Infinity Blade :p.

    But yes, you need to be a good programmer or have a good programmer. However you also need to be a good artist or have a good artist.

    Of course if you're a good artist and have no programmers around you'll need UDK (or something similar). But this doesn't make UDK necessary to have a high quality game.
     
  16. meds

    meds New Member

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    Yeah I have to say my real world experience disagrees with you there. Tools and technology definitely affect the final quality of a games visuals, especially on large projects.
     
  17. Bad Sector

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    Oh, sorry. "Real" world experience. Ok then, you're right. UDK will make your rich and famous :)
     
  18. Roman Budzowski

    Indie Author

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    You seem to complain that 3rd parties will take about 50% of your revenue... but there are many developers that give away 60-70% to portals without getting awesome tools from them.

    If your game requires UDK then it's a great deal, if not, why bother?
     
  19. zoombapup

    Moderator Original Member

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    I'm with BS on this one. The kind of tech we're talking about really isnt that complicated, these guys have just been doing it for a long time. All of the old optimisations they used to employ have come back into play is all.

    Frankly, with the quality of toolsets these days (I'm talking lightmap baking and the like) its fantastically easy to get a nice looking scene up and running relatively quickly.

    I've seen AAA studio that literally just used a vertex lit single mesh for the whole of their environment (a racing game) and it looked FANTASTIC. Becuase they had great artists who understood how to maximize the look of their tech.

    Just because anybody can produce a nice-ish looking peice in UE3 because its got sensible defaults, doesnt mean its particularly hard to create great looking peices without it.
     
  20. schizoslayer

    schizoslayer New Member

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    The slow down is actually a gameplay feature and is under the players control. It also affords you some additional maneuverability and is essential in surviving for a long time.

    I still need to figure out a way to get that across better in the videos but when playing people pick it up pretty quickly.

    ANYWAY!

    I use UDK for a special reason: I've been working with Unreal since 2001 so I know my way around the engine better than anything else out there. Also since I'm primarily a Designer and not a coder the prospect of making my own engine or of bashing some other piece of middleware into the shape I want is incredibly daunting. I'd rather pay Epic the royalties and know I can make exactly what I want to make without having to ever worry about anything remotely technical.

    Now while I don't need UDK to make an arena shooter I certainly wouldn't have made an Arena Shooter that is in any way as good looking or as polished as Waves is and in fact being a UDK game has got me more press than I would have gotten on my own as there is a huge community of Unreal fans and modders that have all moved on to using and following UDK projects.

    The biggest benefit though is that the engine is incredibly robust (It's even faster and more robust than UT3 Black edition) very scalable and comes with an excellent content pipeline. These are things that the players may not reap any direct benefit from but as a developer they save so much time. The particle effect editor alone has saved me probably weeks of work by now.

    Oh and the Steam integration is already done on PC so getting a UDK game onto Steam is very easy from a technical point of view.

    In short: There are alot of good things in UDK beyond it just having a very nice renderer that can save you time and money.
     

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