Epic Games has announced the launch of the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), a free edition of Unreal Engine 3 that provides community access to the award-winning toolset.
The software release is available to anyone interested in using 3D game engine technology, including game developers, students, hobbyists, researchers, creators of 3D visualizations and simulations, and digital filmmakers.
UDK contains all the most recently added features and technological enhancements, including many that have yet to be seen in an Unreal Engine game. Furthermore, Epic Games will release ongoing, upgraded builds of UDK for free.
Anyone can start working with the Unreal Engine 3 toolset by downloading UDK at udk.com, where detailed product features, technical documentation, commercial licensing terms, support resources and more are also available.
There is no charge for non-commercial or educational use of UDK. Over 100 academic campuses currently use Unreal Technology as part of teaching game development-related courses.
Commercial terms have been structured to make it easy for independent developers, start-up firms and seasoned professionals to use UDK with minimal financial barrier from concept to deployment. UDK is currently for PC use only, although console support is under consideration.
"I'm excited about the possibilities the Unreal Development Kit opens to those who are looking to get into the game business but don't otherwise have the means to acquire world-class technology and tools like ours," said Mark Rein, vice president of Epic Games. "UDK is Unreal Engine 3, which has been used to create games in a wide range of genres, as well as military simulations, 3D architectural walkthroughs, animated movies and more. Users are only limited by their imaginations. Go ahead make something Unreal!"