CryEngine Free, Non-Commercially At Least

By Jim Rossignol on August 18th, 2011 at 10:01 am.

Guns and trees: all you need.
CryEngine 3 is now free to use, as long as you’re not making any money from your creations. Crytek explain: “You can use CryENGINE 3 for free in educational facilities, even if you are charging tuition. We have always offered our engine for free to educators, but now individual students can also freely download the engine and use it to learn about real-time 3D development. CryENGINE 3 is also free for non-commercial use; if you are distributing your game or application for free (and not charging for your work in producing it, whether directly or indirectly), no additional license is required.” There’s also apparently an indie license agreement for small projects, but you need to get in touch with Crytek for details.

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50 Comments »

  1. neolith says:

    Good move.

  2. NathaI3 says:

    Good show.

  3. CMaster says:

    Excellent.
    I wonder if the tools that come with it are as easy and quick as the promotional materials made out.

    • Sagan says:

      So I had a go at it earlier, and you definitely need a tutorial to get started. That being said I do believe that the tools become as easy as they showed them to be once you get used to all the buttons and know how to set everything up.

    • CMaster says:

      Well yes, obviously it’s still going to take skill and knowledge to use. Their promo material talked about things however like when using the level editor, of being able to see stuff in-engine as you edit, and even switch between target platforms, as well as being relatively intuitive. Contrast with Source Engine’s buggy and clunky Hammer, which needs a time-consuming compile and game start before you can see what it is you’ve actually done.

    • Stardog says:

      “Well yes, obviously it’s still going to take skill and knowledge to use. Their promo material talked about things however like when using the level editor, of being able to see stuff in-engine as you edit, and even switch between target platforms, as well as being relatively intuitive. Contrast with Source Engine’s buggy and clunky Hammer, which needs a time-consuming compile and game start before you can see what it is you’ve actually done.”

      But they’re not competing with Source. They’re competing with UDK and Unity. Unity has a one-off fee of $1500 and you can play the games in-browser. It’s lightmapper is also better than UDK’s at least, and scripting is easier to access without having to setup some IDE.

      I think UDK and CryEngine both fail for indie development compared to Unity.

    • JohnnyMaverik says:

      @ Stardog

      Until Valve release the source SDK for free, full, complete, tied only to steam and not any of Valve’s specific titles, which they have said they’re going to do after they’ve bundled the bits of engine they’ll need up.

      Still, I’ve used Unity and UDK and I agree, Unity beats UDK hands down on nearly every single level, and in terms of usability and capability it obliterates Source, although on the other hand there’s just something about the Source engine, it may be a pain in the arse to use in many respects five years or so behind the other options but it just feels damn right.

      Haven’t used the CryEngine 3 but if it’s anything like the CryEngine 2 it’ll be like trying to fly a Jet after only experience with a small biplane for most bedroom mappers and mod teams if they want to do anything more than just build a few maps with the assets that come with the engine and stick the default Crysis first person controller in there.

  4. Kaira- says:

    Well done, Crytek. I am proud.

  5. westyfield says:

    Crytek is credit to team.

  6. zeroskill says:

    Wow, a move that makes modders and indies happy. A rare sight indeed! Congratz, Crytek! I hope we will see alot of creativity coming from this :)

  7. Rii says:

    This makes me feel like buying Crysis 2.

  8. Joshua says:

    And the best thing is that the games produced by it will actually run on many a system. It is perfect for… any sort of audience.

  9. Lukasz says:

    cool. anyone used it? how hard is learn it? what you need to know besides knowing how to use the program?
    programming languages?
    other 3d modeling programs?

  10. Khann says:

    This is a good move.

    I’m sure UDK has done good things for Unreal Engine.

    But then I have no idea what I’m talking about, so who knows.

  11. Keneb says:

    Companies such as CryTech make their money from corporate contracts 0 licensing out the engine to other dev teams etc. This is just financial prudence; if swarms of graduating students are familiar with the engine then games studios will see it as a good engine to license since there will be a good pool of potential employees who can hit the ground running when they start.

    There’s a reason why it’s not too difficult to find Keygens for products like 3D Studio Max and Photoshop…

    • Wunce says:

      The reason is that aliens are in cahoots with the government in a secret ploy to steal the worlds supply of binary. They must be stopped!

    • Crainey says:

      I’m sure RPS could add this to the list of causes they are fighting, such as the no-oceans one.

    • Schelome says:

      This is of course true, and I think most everyone here realises this.
      That does not change the fact that it is a good gesture…

    • Keneb says:

      Wunce, it’s no big conspiracy, just how things work… I certainly didn’t mean to sound down on CryTek about it, but I’d be buying their games because I think they’re awesome (which I do,) rather than because of an industry move!

    • LionsPhil says:

      Why do you think there are free editions of Visual Studio, a product that costs over $550 for an individual? This isn’t an evil conspiracy you muppets; it is, as Keneb says, just good business sense to make it easy for people to learn your tools, because when they get a job using their skill with those tools their employer will be shelling out for proper licensing. (Also, in Microsoft’s case, if you learn to develop for Windows under Windows, you’re going to keep using Windows and writing software that encourages others to use Windows.)

      It’s just a pleasant case of a sensible business practice having a nice side-effect, in that indies and hobbyists get shiny toys normally way out of their price range to play with. (Indie licensing is either making money out of the long tail, or acknowledging that “indie game developer” can be “professional game developer in training”. Either way, same pleasant side-effect.)

  12. Orija says:

    Hopefully the Project Offset guys at Fractiv make use of the indie license agreement thingy.

  13. MuscleHorse says:

    What a glorious time for indie games with all of these engines going free/having cheapish indie licenses.

  14. Jamesworkshop says:

    Some of the best news, got some serious plans for turning Crysis 2 into an immersive sim once my android tablet RPG is finished

  15. Crainey says:

    They should have used a similar model as Epic with their engine, see http://www.udk.com/licensing

    • Moni says:

      UDK license terms seem more indie friendly, actually the fact that they’ve laid out their commercial license terms so clearly makes it seem like commercial licensing for the Cryengine SDK is just an afterthought.

      EDIT: Having a dig around, thinking about it, the Cryengine SDK is positioned more as a purely educational resource, letting people dig around the source code. Whereas the UDK is positioned as a complete toolset for developing products.

    • syntax says:

      IIRC Cryengine licensing is a simple 20% cut or an upfront fee that is very high.

  16. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    If they had clearer licensing terms for indies, this would have been a good competition for Unity and UDK.

    Anyway, they better get started with the documentation.

  17. Eclipse says:

    Cannot wait to see the release of that awesome MechWarrior game as “standalone mod”, Same for other cool Crysis mods that could make the leap

  18. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Awesome. More of this type of thing, please!

  19. Aspongeinmauve says:

    Crytek- Making a Kinnect game: -1 points, this: +2 points. I am now fond of Crytek again.

  20. Shooop says:

    Crytek loves the PC community. But as everyone knows, EA doesn’t. Which is why Crysis 2 was… Blah.

    EDIT
    Shit. Rii’s right.

  21. barules says:

    Does that mean you can use it to make games,as long as they are free?

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