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Build your next hit with Unity Gaming Services

April 1, 2022 in Games | 8 min. read
Unity Gaming Services
Unity Gaming Services

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Are you currently using GameSparks?  

In 2021, Amazon announced the deprecation of the GameSparks service, and from March 30, 2022, new game launches will not be supported. 

This means that you have until September 30, 2022 to manually transition your game to a new service and minimize the amount of disruption to your players. 

If you are on the lookout for an alternative, Unity Gaming Services has the battle-tested solutions you need to build, manage, and grow your game.

What do Unity Gaming Services include?

Unity Gaming Services virtual city building

Building your next multiplayer hit

Powering online play has always been a challenge, and it can be difficult to strike the balance between speed, performance, and features. 

If you’re working on your next multiplayer hit, we’ve got you covered:

  • You can run a resilient multi-cloud hybrid server hosting and matchmaking solution without having to build and maintain your own infrastructure with Unity’s Multiplay
  • With Matchmaker (currently in closed beta) integrated, you can match the right players, at the right speed, in the right place – with out-of-the-box Multiplay integration for our Enterprise customers.
  • Our tools can help you connect your players, wherever they are. Unity’s Relay (beta) service allows you to connect your players and provide great multiplayer gaming experiences without the need for a costly dedicated game server. 
  • Lobby (beta) lets players create public or private lobbies using simple game attributes which other players can then search, discover, and join. It also supports simple player-led matchmaking.
  • With Netcode (beta) you can build a reliable foundation for your game by using Netcode for GameObjects, a networking library built for the Unity game engine. You can also use Netcode for Entities, Unity’s experimental high-performance, multithreaded Data-Oriented Technology Stack (DOTS), which allows you to take full advantage of multicore processors.
  • If you’re looking for an alternative multiplayer chat tool, look no further than Vivox voice and text comms, one of the most popular and feature-rich comms technologies in the gaming industry.
Unity Gaming Services virtual shop

Designing a sustainable in-game economy

Unity’s Economy (beta) service can help you create, manage, and publish your in-game economy and it makes it easy to define in-game currencies and store players’ balances. 

You can even manage your economy in real time without updating the game client.

Here’s what the service includes: 

  • Currencies, which allow users to have a balance of one or more denominations in your game.
  • Inventory items, which represent a definition of a resource that is created as part of the configuration. Players can own instances of inventory items (for example, swords, shields, or hats) and, unlike currencies, each instance can have its own properties.
  • Purchases are when a player can buy in-game currencies and items with those same in-game currencies or items (i.e. virtual purchases), or by using real money via a digital storefront.
  • Economy (beta) is managed from a dedicated configuration panel on the Unity Dashboard. This centralized repository oversees the management and publication of your game’s resources, and also allows you to add custom data.
  • Once you’ve designed your economy and defined its parameters, you can publish it to your game by transferring the configuration and allowing your players to interact with it instantly.
Unity Gaming Services Events

Managing the challenges of live operations

Often one of the most difficult parts of launching a game is managing live ops, so it helps to have the right tools in your arsenal to

Here’s how Unity Gaming Services can help: 

  • Analytics (beta) equips studios with the ability to easily understand game performance and player behaviors through predefined dashboards, Data Explorer, and more.
  • With Unity’s Remote Config, you can launch new features, test functionality, or make general modifications without requiring app updates or code changes.
  • Game Overrides allows you to reconfigure game settings for your store, environment, and content deployments. With fresh in-game experiences, you can reduce churn, re-engage lapsed players, and delight loyal fans.
  • Cloud Content Delivery (CCD) allows you to effortlessly build and release game updates with powerful asset management and content delivery via the cloud. Plus, CCD users can now deliver assets to the right players, at the right time by targeting and scheduling changes to designated content using Game Overrides.
Unity Gaming Services Backend

Setting up your game’s backend infrastructure

Finally, if you had been using GameSparks to power your game’s backend, Unity’s Game Backend solutions offer a collection of tools and cloud services that host and run content for your game on managed infrastructure. 

Here are some of the ways you can use our Game Backend tools:

If you want to get started with Game Backend tools and other Unity Gaming Services, check out our collection of Game Operations samples.

  • With Cloud Code (beta), you can change game logic whenever you want without releasing a new version of your game, and link together multiple backend services with custom logic. 
  • Cloud Save (beta) allows you to track and store player data including player abilities, statistics, and more – enabling cross-device accounts for your players.
  • Authentication (beta) allows you to assign an account to players coming in, and attach all the data generated by the backend products to each player.
  • If you had been using GameSparks to store player accounts, you can instead combine Unity’s Cloud Save (beta) and Authentication (beta) services to save a player’s progress automatically and link it to their account.

How can I get started? 

As a developer, you need to pick the right set of services to grow your game, but they also need to be affordable and not add extra work to an already busy schedule. With UGS products, you can start for free, test out the tool to see if it is right for you, and only pay as you scale your game.

If you want to try out these tools now, check out our main page for a breakdown on each specific service and how it could work for you.

Also, the UGS products currently in beta will officially be graduating out of open beta this June. At the same time, we will be releasing a whole new set of tools in beta to provide further support for developers seeking stronger ways to grow and manage their game.

If you want to stay in the loop on all our updates, follow our new Unity Gaming Services channels on Twitter and Facebook or visit our new Unity Gaming Services Forums.

April 1, 2022 in Games | 8 min. read

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