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See the Unity 2022 LTS updates to two of our biggest e-books: URP and HDRP for advanced users

April 18, 2024 in Engine & platform | 7 min. read
HDRP and URP graphics
HDRP and URP graphics

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The Universal Render Pipeline (URP) and the High Definition Render Pipeline (HDRP) are built to help you scale and deliver your games for wide platform reach with the best possible visual quality and performance.

We created two technical e-books to provide Unity artists, technical artists, and developers with a better onboarding experience to help you harness the wide-ranging capabilities of URP and HDRP. We’re happy to announce that both guides are now updated to include all relevant features in Unity 2022 LTS. 

The Universal Render Pipeline for advanced Unity creators and Lighting and environments in the High Definition Render Pipeline are written by Unity and external technical experts. Each guide provides a treasure trove of illustrated step-by-step instructions and best practices for creating high-quality, performant graphics with your chosen pipeline. 

With the HDRP guide weighing in at 186 pages and the URP one at 166 pages, these are two comprehensive resources you can reference throughout the planning and development of your Unity 2022 LTS-based projects. 

Let’s look at what’s in each of the guides.

URP for advanced Unity creators, 2022 LTS edition

URP is a multiplatform rendering solution built on top of the Scriptable Render Pipeline (SRP) framework. It is the successor to our Built-in Render Pipeline and is designed to be efficient for you to learn, customize, and scale to all Unity-supported platforms. In Unity 2022 LTS, URP provides the majority of the functionality offered by the Built-in Render Pipeline, and in certain areas exceeds it. Our top goal is that URP is the leading renderer for mobile, XR, and untethered hardware.

What’s new in the URP e-book?

Unity Universal Render Pipeline_Full Screen Shader Graph effects_Unity 2022 LTS
The tint effect, created with Full Screen Shader Graph and URP

The URP e-book will help you migrate your Built-in Pipeline-based projects to URP, or start a new project based on URP. 

The updates are threaded through almost every section of this latest edition of the guide – updated instructions for setting up and applying the myriad capabilities of URP, new links, images, and code snippets – so you can rely on it to match as accurately as possible your experience using URP in Unity 2022 LTS. 

There are new additions and changes for areas like applying decals, URP quality settings and converters, comparing rendering paths to include Forward+, Full Screen Shader Graph including custom post-processing, LOD Crossfade, the SubmitRenderRequest API, and much more.

To show you how comprehensive the URP e-book is, here’s a full list of the topics and workflows it covers.

List of topics covered in URP ebook

A new section exploring the URP 3D Sample

Unity URP 3D Sample_The oasis environment
The oasis environment from the URP 3D Sample

The URP e-book concludes with an introduction to the four environments included in the URP 3D Sample, which is available in the Unity Hub. Each environment has a distinct art style that showcases the different lighting and visual effect capabilities of URP for multiple platforms.

You can also explore the URP 3D Sample through this short walkthrough video.

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Tutorial: The URP 3D Sample – a short introduction

HDRP lighting and environments 2022 LTS edition

HDRP is Unity’s high-fidelity SRP built to target modern (compute shader-compatible) PC and console hardware. It utilizes physically based lighting techniques, linear lighting, HDR lighting, and a configurable hybrid Tile/Cluster Deferred/Forward lighting architecture.

What’s new in the HDRP e-book?

We added so much new information to the 2022 LTS version of the HDRP e-book that it’s close to double the length of the previous one! Just like the URP guide, this one has new images, links, and information in many of its sections, with the biggest additions as follows. 

The water system

Unity_High Definition Render Pipeline_water system_swimming pool
The Swimming Pool sample

A 30+ page deep dive into the new water system covers waves, wind effects, swells, ripples, foam effects, decals, caustics, underwater scenes, water scripting, and much more. 

In addition to the e-book updates you can also dive deeper into the water system in HDRP through this video tutorial.

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A deep dive into the HDRP water system


Unity_High Definition Render Pipeline_Terrain tools_Unity 2022 LTS
The Terrain system works with the Cloud Layer Volume component override.

From sparkling water to beautiful landscapes: A whole new Terrain section covers texturing and detailing, trees and vegetation, including how to work with SpeedTree, the Terrain tools package, painting terrain, ray tracing for terrain, and a look at the HDRP Terrain demo.

Shaders and materials

Unity_High Definition Render Pipeline_Material Variants_Unity 2022 LTS
An example of Material Variants

We also cover HDRP materials in detail in the new edition, with a section explaining material samples, variants, and properties; subsurface scattering; translucency; decals; HDRP Master Stack; Full Screen Shader Graph, and Volumetric Shader Graph fog.


Unity_High Definition Render Pipeline_Clouds_Unity 2022 LTS
Cloud layers with a Physically Based Sky override

The section on creating clouds is expanded to include steps for atmospheric and sun-based lighting and blending between two distinct cloud systems.

Other key topics covered in the HDRP guide include:

HDRP topics

You can  find all of the advanced e-books from Unity in the best practices hub and best practices page in the Unity Manual.

April 18, 2024 in Engine & platform | 7 min. read

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