Unity has made the decision to temporarily close its offices in San Francisco and Austin, Texas, and has canceled a scheduled town hall meeting due to the receipt of death threats, as reported by Bloomberg. This development comes in the wake of a recent contentious alteration to Unity’s business model.
A spokesperson for Unity stated, “Today, we have become aware of a potential threat directed at some of our offices. Our top priority is the safety of our employees, and in response, we have taken immediate and proactive measures.” The spokesperson further added, “We are closing offices today and tomorrow that may be at risk from this threat and are fully cooperating with law enforcement as they conduct their investigation.”
Effective January 1st, Unity will impose fees on developers every time a game built using Unity is installed, once specific revenue or installation thresholds are reached. This decision has ignited a significant and passionate backlash within the gaming industry. Critics argue that it will disproportionately impact developers, publishers, and distributors, particularly those who create freemium games (games that are free to download but generate revenue through advertising and microtransactions) or set low prices for their titles.
— Mega Crit (@MegaCrit) September 13, 2023
Some game studios, including Mega Crit Games, the developer behind “Slay the Spire,” have publicly declared their intention to migrate games they have been developing with Unity for several years to alternative game engines unless Unity reconsiders its decision. However, this shift to a different engine is not without consequences, as it could disrupt their production timelines.