How to hire freelance Unreal Engine developers in 2024

Updated on May 21, 2024
Platforms to find talented Unreal Engine developers

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Kelly Wilson
Written by Kelly Wilson

Strategist and entrepreneur, with experience in hiring developers across various industries. Kelly has established herself as a trusted expert in identifying and recruiting top tech talent. She shares advanced tips on how to identify the right talent, create hiring strategies, develop your tech teams and much more.

Expertise: IT Recruiting, Tech, Marketing

Unreal Engine is a popular game engine used for developing high-quality games across multiple platforms. Our guide to hiring Unreal Engine developers includes a list of top recommended talent platforms to help you find the right talent for your projects.

Find the best site to hire the right Unreal Engine developers in under 60 seconds.

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Here are the top 5 sites to hire freelance Unreal Engine developers:

Based on facts publicly available as of 01.01.2024

1. Toptal

Founded in 2010, Toptal is known for providing talented freelance Unreal Engine developers who have worked with some of the most noteworthy employers in the world to date. If you're looking for talented, highly experienced developers, this website can connect you with rigorously vetted developers. How vetted? Less than 3% of the people who apply make their way into the company's network. The platform is fast, allowing you to hire expertly matched, world-class talent in a matter of 48 hours, with services that you can scale to your needs. If you're looking for the best, highest-caliber game developer, look no further than Toptal.

Key points:

  • Enjoy a risk-free trial for up to 5 days.
  • Completed over 60,000 projects for 25K+ satisfied clients.
  • Trustpilot rating of 4.8 out of 5.

2. ViitorCloud

When your company is trying to hire remote Unreal Engine developers, ViitorCloud has the resources you need. Based in India, the company's mission is to collaborate, innovate, build, and succeed. The company's talent pool tout expertise in creating photorealistic graphics and realistic sound, and they offer a wide range of services to help you achieve your game development goals. Robust security, flexible engagement models, and uncompromised quality are just some of what you'll find if you hire ViitorCloud to do the job.

Key points:

  • ViitorCloud offers streamlined communications and 24/7 support.
  • Choose from hourly pricing, dedicated team, and fixed-price hiring models.
  • Pricing ranges from $50-$150+/hour, depending on project complexity and developer experience levels.

3. Truelancer

Truelancer claims to be one of the most affordable sites to hire Unreal Engine developers, but that doesn't mean it's lacking in talent. It provides information for thousands of top developers in the field. Search profiles for people or companies who match the list of skills you need, or if you prefer, post your own job and wait for people to apply. You'll find listings for companies and developers all over the world and at a range of price points.

Key points:

  • Truelancer won’t release your payment until you’re 100% satisfied.
  • You can create contests and receive entries from interested developers.
  • Truelancer offers a premium recruiting service and managed projects.

4. Upstack

An invite-only platform, Upstack is home to listings for some of the best Unreal Engine developers. Popular among the fastest-growing game development companies, Upstack makes sure to list only the smartest, most experienced, and most responsive senior-level developers on its website. The company takes pride in providing premier startups with high-quality programmers who can work on their project immediately.

Key points:

  • Prices average $65-$75/hour, determined by a developer’s qualifications.
  • Evaluate developers during a no-risk, 14-day trial period.
  • Upstack’s vetting includes eight steps, accepting only top talent.

5. Upwork

When you hire Unreal Engine developers from Upwork, you can rest easy knowing that their top 27 freelancers in the field have a nearly perfect rating from a whopping 1,600+ clients. Like other freelance platforms, Upwork allows you to hire in one of two ways. You can choose to browse the already popular talent to find people who meet your needs as well as your price points, or you can post your job and include a budget, which will let developers come to you. Depending on when your project begins, you can find people to work on it in a matter of a day or two in many cases.

Key points:

  • Utilize Upwork Talent Scouts if you prefer a talent-matching option.
  • Use several free tools and features to identify top candidates.
  • Upwork performs minimal vetting, designating Expert-Vetted status to top talent.

Guide to hiring great freelance Unreal Engine developers

There are many websites that allow you to hire Unreal Engine developers. With so many to choose from, it can be hard to discern which ones are the best. Luckily, our list will help you narrow down your search.

Originally created by Epic Games in 1988, today Unreal Engine is a popular programming language for creating RPGs, MMORPGs, stealth games, and fighting games. The game engine is useful for anything from creating the most basic concepts of a new game well into developing the features and even releasing the game to the public. Its wide range of available tools makes it easy to create, manage, and modify properties of games as necessary and includes a physics engine, graphics engine, sound engine, input, online module, and Gameplay Framework. The tool continues to draw in new users, making it easy for creators to hire Unreal Engine developers, as long as they know where to look and what to look for.

According to Fatih Küçükkarakurt, security researcher, penetrations tester, and malware analyst: “Very big game studios [...] use the Unreal Engine game engine. In addition, not only the gaming industry but also the architecture and cinema industry often benefit from the graphics power of Unreal Engine.”

What Are Unreal Engine Developers?

Simply put, Unreal Engine developers are responsible for using this tool to create new video games or other software related to gaming. You can hire developers to help you create prototypes, build the game, test it, and even release it for commercial production. In addition to the coding, which typically relies on C++, these developers animate the games, create adjacent media, and ensure that all games function correctly on the platforms they're meant to be played on.

Depending on which tasks you want your developers to work on, you may find that they have skills and qualifications such as degrees in computer science, software engineering, video game engineering or design, and certification in animation tools, graphics software, and more.

How To Hire Unreal Engine Developers

Before looking for an Unreal Engine developer for hire, it's important to determine what type of work you want them to do. Do you want help from start to finish, or do you need a dev to help only with certain aspects of the game design and build? Consider, too, whether you're willing to work with people who are new to the field or whether you prefer to hire seasoned professionals. After determining what types of developers you're interested in bringing on, you can begin searching for the best Unreal Engine developers for your project.

What Skills To Look For Before Hiring Unreal Engine Developers

When you're ready to hire Unreal Engine developers, first consider the developer's education. The right candidate will ideally have a degree in video game development or design. However, many excellent game developers also have software development or computer sciences degrees.

Obviously, you'll want your developer to be well-versed in Unreal Engine and all of its various tools. The right candidate should be fluent in C++, which is what UE runs on. Other soft skills are important as well. Developers must be punctual and have strong attention to detail and excellent communication skills to ensure your game is done on time, on budget, and with your ideas in mind.

How Much It Does It Cost To Hire Unreal Engine Developers

The cost to hire Unreal Engine developers varies greatly and depends on several factors. If you are willing to work with people who are just beginning their careers, then you can expect to pay less per hour than if you only want to work with people who have five or more years of experience. Consider the scope of your project as well. Are you developing a small indie game or do you have dreams of releasing the next Fortnite?

Other factors to consider include skillsets, where in the world you'll be working and how much time you expect your team to dedicate to your project each week. The more you expect from your developers, the more you can expect to pay. On the low end, budget for paying $20-$30 per hour per developer. If you only want the best of the best, numbers can jump to $200 or more per hour per developer. The average developer makes $66 per hour.

Things To Consider Before Hiring

There are several things that you should consider before you hire Unreal Engine developers:

  • What is the concept of your game?
  • When do you want to release your game?
  • How wide of an audience do you expect to release it to?
  • What is your budget like?
  • Are you willing to work with new developers?
  • How much time do you expect it to take to develop your game?
  • Do you want developers to work only on your project or can they split their time between projects?
  • Are the people you want to work with avid gamers themselves?

There are thousands of talented UE programmers around the world. Use this guide to help you with your task to hire Unreal Engine developers to make your dream project a reality.

Hiring Unreal Engine developers - FAQs

Why Should You Hire an Unreal Engine Developer?

Approximately 3.26 billion people in 2023 are gamers, accounting for around 41% of the global population. 3D, immersive, real-time games are significantly more popular than 2D games.

Created in 1988 to power a video game, Unreal Engine now has a suite of advanced 3D creation tools suitable for additional uses. Unreal Engine developers can use these tools to create:

  • Simulation, training and educational applications
  • Linear television and film content
  • Automotive and architectural visualization
  • Live event and broadcast productions
  • Menus and user interfaces

If your project needs to integrate interactive experiences, rendered animations, immersive virtual scenarios and other cutting-edge content, hire an Unreal Engine developer.

Where can I find Unreal Engine developers for hire?
  • Toptal
  • ViitorCloud
  • Truelancer
  • Upstack
  • Upwork

Explore more sites in our comprehensive list of top companies.

How Much Does It Cost To Hire an Unreal Engine Developer?

The average compensation for Unreal Engine developers in the U.S. is $104,840 per year or $50 per hour. Annual salaries vary between $18,000 and $180,000 depending on location, skills and experience. You can eliminate payroll and overhead expenses by hiring freelancers.

How Do I Hire Unreal Engine Developers?

With the many potential uses for Unreal Engine tools, these developers often acquire expertise in other areas as well. Look for those whose additional skill sets and availability match your project’s requirements. First, define your project parameters:

  • Timeframe, including duration
  • Budget
  • Desired skill sets
  • Nature and scope
  • The number of freelance, full-time or part-time Unreal Engine developers you need

You can find qualified candidates by posting your open positions, searching developer portfolios and profiles or utilizing talent-matching services using top sites.

Are Unreal Engine Developers In Demand?

The number of gamers worldwide should increase by 17% by 2027, and the overall demand for visually appealing interactive digital experiences is also growing. According to projections, the high demand for Unreal Engine developers should grow by 122% by 2031.

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