Unity Technologies, the company behind the widely used video game engine Unity, has canceled a town meeting and closed two offices following a credible death threat. This threat comes after just days after the company announced a controversial new business model that many are calling predatory towards game developers.
As reported by Bloomberg, Unity chief executive office John Riccitiello was the one to make the call after receiving what the company deemed a credible death threat. Riccitiello then canceled the company’s scheduled meeting and announced that the company’s offices in San Francisco, California and Austin, Texas would be closed for the remainder of the day.
This news comes just days after Unity Technologies announced it would be implementing a runtime fee on studios starting January 1, 2024. This fee, Unity explained, is based on the number of times a game built with the Unity engine is installed, with studios paying anywhere from $.01 to $.20 per installation upon meeting a certain threshold. Game developers were quick to point out Unity’s new policies violated former agreements, lacked transparency, and could financially devastate many studios.
Since the announcement, developers have reportedly begun making plans to file a class-action lawsuit against Unity. Furthermore, word has circulated that there is a growing division within the company. In a since-deleted X post, an employee stated their team has, “communicated extensively internally how horribly this would be received. Stressed simplicity and an extensive FAQ detailing all edge cases.”
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