We can’t believe 2017 is almost over! This year brought some major changes to Unity. We started a whole new release cycle. Released new tools that empowered people with all kinds of skill to make even more amazing projects together. Helped you reach more users on more platforms. Here’s a quick look back at some of the new things that came with Unity 2017.
One of our major priorities this year has been empowering creators with powerful new visual tools that let the whole team collaborate efficiently. Timeline, Cinemachine, Unity FBX Exporter and Tilemap, OctaneRender for Unity are all here so that you can get better results faster. At the same time, we’ve been improving Unity Teams, a set of tools that make syncing and sharing your project seamless.
Getting the hang of these huge new features can be difficult. So we’re doing tutorials, online training sessions, talks at Unite and blog posts full of tips and tricks. And the holiday period is perfect for some learning, so dig in! You can explore worldbuilding in 2D using Tilemap and 2D Cinemachine with Matt Schell. Or take twenty minutes to learn how Unity Teams work from this Unite Austin talk. Tell us what you think about these resources in the comments - especially if there are some areas where you think we should make more content!
And we do enjoy making content, that’s for sure - just take a look at the projects and tools we released on the Asset Store, for your free enjoyment! We love to see what you make with all the assets. But there was one project that we were blown away by this year. OATS Studios used the full capabilities of Unity 2017 to create two short films that continue the world of our demo ADAM. They really gave us a glimpse into the future of real-time rendering. But they’ve also worked with us to explain how they used tools like the Alembic Importer and features like Timeline to work so much faster than a traditional studio and achieve their creative vision. We can’t recommend enough that you read the entire “Making of Adam” series!
We’ve also invested a lot of our time and effort into improving the everyday experience of working in Unity for all of you who are programmers and technical artists. That means a lot of improvements to things like the GI Profiler and texture compression. Or a New Asset Bundle Browser:
We also released the Playable API, allowing you to have precise programmatic control over animation and audio. You can now update your live game in an instant with Remote Settings. And we’re working on upgrading the core scripting runtime to Mono/.NET 4.6.
These updates improve the performance of your games and make scripting and optimization overall easier. And they are a huge priority for us in 2018, with the new C# Job System currently in Technical Preview and upcoming Scriptable Render Pipeline available as an experimental feature. Watch the relevant part of the Unite keynote to get a taste for the upcoming performance optimizations:
With Unity 2017, things have really started heating up when it comes to mixed reality development. We’ve added support for ARCore and ARKit as well as Vuforia, enabling our community to create cross platform AR experiences. You can get started writing cross-platform code with experimental sample code in this this blog post.
You often ask how can we progress in all directions at once, working on the big new things while improving all the existing features, while maintaining support for more than 25 platforms. The truth is, we’ve hired loads of super talented new people this year. Using Unity, you now have more than 500 engineers on your team, working all around the globe to provide the technical backbone for your digital creations.
And the quality of projects that you’re already making with Unity 2017 is just awe inspiring. You motivate us to keep improving your tools in the years to come - thank you!
A special extra thank you goes to our beta testers, who take the hot off the presses new versions of the engine and run wild with it. You help us improve the stability of every release.
If you’re not a Unity beta tester yet, we’d like to invite you to join up and become a part of the future of Unity! Get early access to what’s coming in 2018! Keep an eye on our open beta page.