Today, Epic made a truly “Unreal” announcement – Unreal Tournament 2014 is on its way and, what’s more, will be completely free.
Let’s just go over that again: not “free to play”, not “freemium” – completely free.
Development is just getting underway, according to the company. Epic has assigned a small team of Unreal Tournament veterans to work on the project. In addition to the in-house team, Epic will also involve fans in the development.
The company has always been a supporter of the mod community, and their annual $1,000,000 “Make Something Unreal” development completion is a highlight of the modding calendar.
The company has stated the game will be a “true to its roots” competitive FPS, and by involving the community at this early stage there’s a good chance of a traditional UT experience.
The more cynical among you will be asking what’s in this deal for Epic?
As you suspected, this is not an entirely charitable venture and the company plans on creating an online marketplace around the game after its release.
The good news here is that rather than being full of greedy micro-transactions, the marketplace will sell mods and content. Earnings will be split between Epic and the content developers, funding development of the game and fostering even greater community involvement.
The Unreal series has always been a firm favorite among PC gamers, and its fast paced multiplayer is seen by many as the definitive competitive FPS experience.
The game is expected to enter alpha in a few months, and will be available for Windows, Mac and Linux.
If you’re an Unreal Tournament fan, tell us what your reaction is in the comments section below.