When Epic says the next Unreal Tournament game will be free, they mean just that. Not free-to-play, just plain ol' free.
From the very first line of code, the very first art created and design decision made, development will happen in the open, as a collaboration between Epic, UT fans and UE4 developers.
It will take many months until the game is playable by gamers. This is real development from scratch. When the game is playable, it will be free. Not free to play, just free. We’ll eventually create a marketplace where developers, modders, artists and gamers can give away, buy and sell mods and content. Earnings from the marketplace will be split between the mod/content developer, and Epic. That’s how we plan to pay for the game.