i get what your are saying. But I needed more advise than just interface-feel-related advise. For example, even after settling on unreal, I am looking through unreal forums and there are a lot of complaints regarding how slow it is on android, ios even after optimization. And that people are moving back to unity. I am stuck in a hard place now as I cant afford unity and free version wont work for android/ios deployment, and Unreal seems to cant handle anything other than tappy bird game for mobile. My game is going to be something like a 3d side-scroller with a ton of animations and I think Unreal may not be up to it yet. Really dont know what to do now.
Unreal.... might not... be up to it? Wat?
Do you know how wrong that sounds? If UE4 is not up to it, you most probably will not find any engine that is. You could say the same about Unity.
Now, if you are not convinced that the mobile builds of Unreal or Unity perform well enough, I guess you have no other choice than to write your own "engine"... or to put it better, write a very lean lightweight engine that just includes the parts you really need to make sure you get as little overhead as possible.
But be aware that both Unreal and Unity have been optimized by dozens of very good, professional engineers for years, so chances are even your best try will perform much worse than that.
I think what you really need to do now is pick one of both and start prototyping. There is really no point in continuing this discussion if you just make asumptions based on what you read on the forums. The vocal minority will always be very negative and harsh about something, that does not mean that there is not a big silent majority that is pretty happy with a product.
So unless you can show us a link of a particular discussion or even better, a critiscism by a real professional in a blog or something like that, something that will put some meat to your vague "it might not perform" suspicion, this discussion is totally pointless.
As I said before, as frob put it above, Unity is ONLY not free if you need the additional features of the pro version. You REALLY should try the free version to see if you miss anything.
The thing you might miss most additionally to the list put up by frob are the Image (Post-)Effects. Some highend graphical features like SSOA are realized in Unity with Image Effects, so without the Pro Version, you might miss out on that. As frob said, you might find solutions in the asset store, they might not be free though, or you might be able to come up with your own solution (you need to be pretty adept at coding at this point though), but again, both will consume more of your time.
Again, you should prototype and see if your particular game REALLY needs these features. SSAO can be very important for some games, where the lighting or scene setting makes the missing AO very noticable... for other settings (or for example non-realistic cell-shaded objects), AO might not even be desirable as it would brake the look, or it might just be not noticable enough to justify the price in FPS (image effects can be VERY performance intensitive).
Be aware of the following:
a) You need to start at some point. No more guessing, no more reading up reviews or opinions, make your own opinion on it.
b) You will need to invest a very big amount of hours into developing a highend 3D game, even with the help of the most competent engine
c) To get the best features out of any Engine or Framework, you WILL have to invest something: Either Time and Skill, or Money. There is no free lunch!
Edited by Gian-Reto, 01 September 2014 - 04:30 AM.