While Firelight Technologies' audio tool suite FMOD Studio has always been free for non-commercial projects, starting today it will now also be free for commercial, low-budget indie projects. In a statement released by Firelight CEO Brett Paterson, he explained: "We started out as an indie company so we've always felt an affinity with the indie community. They're risk takers, innovators and explorers. We wanted to give back to that community and we can't wait to see what they do with FMOD Studio."
For titles with a budget of $100,000 USD or less, FMOD Studio used to require a $500 USD licensing fee, but is now completely free. Compared to $3,000 USD for budgets between $100,000-$500,000 USD, and $15,000 USD for budgets at or above $500,000 USD, this is quite the deal. There is also no restriction on platforms, nor do you have to sign any license agreement. The only requirement is that "FMOD must be credited in game or in documentation for your title."
The recently released FMOD Studio 1.3 also added some nice new functionality that should help indie developers, including a Unity integration plug-in and a "Plugin SDK for creating sound generators and effects with examples on GitHub." If you question FMOD Studio's abilities, know that it's been used in several big AAA titles, "including Forza Motorsport 5, which recently won an IGN award for best audio on Xbox One." FMOD also states that the program has been popular with iOS and Android developers.