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Why we’re upgrading from Collaborate to Unity Plastic SCM

December 13, 2021 in Games | 8 min. read
Plastic SCM
Plastic SCM
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Find out all you need to know about the move to Plastic SCM, Unity’s version control system (VCS) built for game development.

Creators using Unity Teams are about to start working with a new and more powerful version control system. That’s why we put together this extensive guide for project owners and users like you to get going with Plastic SCM – and make the most of its key features.

To learn more about this upgrade and receive personalized support, be sure to attend our live webinar on January 19, 2022. Sign up here to save your spot.

Plastic SCM upgrade with Unity versions

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In December 2021, we first began upgrading the version control component from Collaborate to Plastic SCM for select Teams plans. Plastic SCM is Unity’s feature-rich version control system, made for teams of all sizes to tackle projects of any complexity.

This upgrade will occur gradually in cohorts over the coming months, beginning with users whose projects are already on Editor versions supported by Plastic SCM:

  • 2019.4.32f1 or later

  • 2020.3.20f1 or later

  • 2021.1.25f1 or later

  • 2021.2.0b16 or later

  • 2022.1.0a12 or later

Following the upgrade, local Collaborate projects on supported versions will be converted automatically into Plastic SCM workspaces, so you can keep on creating with minimal interruption. If you don’t want to wait for the automated upgrade to reach your cohort, and would rather get going with Plastic SCM immediately, you can get started with the Collaborate migration tool.

How to upgrade your projects from Collaborate to Plastic SCM

For owners and administrators

While the upgrade will be triggered automatically, project owners can always migrate sooner using the Migration Wizard. 

To migrate manually:

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  1. In your project, go to the Unity Dashboard, locate the notification titled Migrating projects from Collaborate to Plastic SCM is now available, then click Learn More.

  2. This leads you to the Collaborate Migration Wizard site. Click on Get Started to run through the process of migrating your Collaborate projects in a Unity org.

  3. Reopen the same Collaborate project in Unity.

  4. If you are on a supported Unity version (see above) the Migration guide will pop up and lead you through the process of converting the local instance of your Collaborate project into a local instance for the Plastic workspace.

  5. Once it finishes, use the Plastic SCM window to continue working on your project and checking in changes.

How to add team members:

To invite team members working on your project, click on the Options menu and select Invite Members to Workspace. The video below walks you through this process for Unity Plastic SCM.

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How to connect Cloud Build to Plastic SCM:

If you’re using Cloud Build with Collaborate, you will need to actively reconnect Cloud Build with Plastic SCM.

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How to set up notifications in Plastic SCM:

Go to the Plastic SCM Cloud Dashboard and set up notifications via Triggers. A trigger allows you to send notifications to Discord, Slack, or through a webhook.

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For users

Local workspace migration:

Check out the video below for step-by-step instructions on how to access a game project stored locally on your machine.

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How to access remote projects:

If you are on one of the supported versions of Plastic SCM for Unity, use the Unity Hub to access your project. The video below shows you how to open a remote project.

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Getting started:

Watch this short video tutorial to learn how to work in the Unity Editor and replicate some of your previous tasks from Collaborate in Unity Plastic SCM.

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Here are some useful notes to facilitate your migration:

  • The Collaborate icon will be replaced by a Plastic SCM icon in the Unity Editor.

  • Use the Pending Changes tab to complete what is known as the Publish action in Collaborate. In Plastic SCM, this is called Checkin Changes.

  • Check the Changesets tab to view your project history. Any changes previously done in Collaborate will still be available via Plastic SCM.

  • You can go back to previous revisions, even if they were done using Collaborate prior to the Plastic SCM upgrade.

  • The Plastic SCM icon turns yellow when new changes are available for your project. You will then be able to see who made the changes, along with further details on those changes, and any other relevant information. Please update your workspace in-Editor to ensure that you’re using the latest version.

  • To access more advanced features of Plastic SCM like the Branch Explorer, you must manually download the client, which you can do via an in-Editor prompt. Stay tuned, however, as Unity will be introducing the ability to create and switch branches directly in-Editor (more on that below).

If you have any questions regarding this setup, please contact our Support team. We’re ready to help.

Benefits of Unity Plastic SCM vs Collaborate

Conveniently revert changes

Conveniently revert changes

With Plastic SCM, you can now view the full history of changes made to your file. To do this, simply right-click and select View file history. Once there, you can even revert to a specific revision as needed.

This is a critical advantage over Collaborate, where you can only view changes made to overarching projects rather than the history of individual files within them; a less than ideal situation when working with multiple teammates. That said, Unity Collaborate monitors the pending changes made by other team members by displaying an “In-Progress” badge on the asset. Plastic SCM does not contain this feature.

Get ready for in-Editor branching

The latest version of the Unity plug-in for Plastic SCM now offers branch creation, which will allow you to create and switch branches directly in-Editor. Branching is one of the greatest benefits of Plastic and can vastly improve collaboration across teams of all sizes – even large teams in the hundreds – through a workflow that fits everyone’s needs.

 in-Editor branching
 in-Editor branching
 In-Editor branching

Scale with speed

Smoothly scale according to both team and file size. Plastic SCM handles massive files and repos at an unprecedented speed. It’s no wonder that it’s more reliable than other version control systems.

Keep working in-Editor while performing updates

In-editor performing updates

With Unity Collaborate, performing an update would regularly lock you out of the Editor due to a box that would pop up, as in the image above. This means that, while Collaborate checked for changes, you couldn’t do any work until the box finally disappeared, which could take awhile.

With Plastic SCM, on the other hand, you no longer have to wait around while performing updates. That’s because it doesn’t lock your Editor – nor does it prompt you to reload impacted scenes until the update is complete – so you can stay focused and keep up the good work.

Long-term support and roadmap

Unity is committed to crafting DevOps and version control solutions for an inclusive collaborative environment that accommodates all team members, regardless of their role and technical expertise.

To get a better idea of what’s been released, what’s in progress, and what’s on the horizon, take a look at our product roadmap page.

Frequently asked questions

Why is Plastic SCM a stronger version control system?

Plastic SCM offers robust collaboration and source control capabilities that empower all team members to work securely and responsively, at scale. Unlike Collaborate, Plastic SCM has the capacity for branching, merging, and locking, which allows each teammate to work on the same code without the fear of lost work or other related conflicts.

As projects grow, so do file sizes. That’s why Plastic SCM is purpose-built to remain quick and responsive, even while working on massive files. It’s also the only version control system that features visual branching. This makes it approachable for users with diverse professional backgrounds.

For more information on how Plastic SCM supports your whole team, read this blog or watch the video below.

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Do I need to pay extra to start using Plastic SCM?

No, you will not pay anything extra to get started with Plastic SCM. 

Once upgraded, Unity Teams Basic Users will receive three (3) seats of Plastic and 5 GB of storage.

Unity Teams Advanced Users will receive three (3) seats of Plastic and 25 GB of complimentary storage. You will not pay more after the upgrade than you did before the upgrade for the same amount of usage.

Why is Unity providing this complimentary upgrade?

Next year, Unity Teams and Collaborate will no longer exist. While we’re still working out the exact timelines, we will remain in close communication with you and share a precise date.

Plastic SCM will be Unity’s version control offering moving forward, which is why we’re upgrading you as soon as possible. As part of this upgrade, we will be migrating your unarchived Collaborate projects over to Plastic. If you have unarchived projects stored in Collaborate, you must extract your data prior to February 28, 2022 before these projects are permanently deleted.

We will also be launching a standalone version of Cloud Build toward the end of 2021, with new pay-as-you-go pricing. This will ensure that you can still use Cloud Build once Teams Advanced goes away.

What will happen to my unarchived projects on older versions of Unity?

If you have unarchived projects on a Unity version that isn’t compatible with Plastic SCM, you will still be upgraded from Collaborate. However, you won’t be able to use Plastic SCM for Unity in the Editor. Unless you upgrade to a version supported by Plastic SCM for Unity, you will only be able to use the Plastic client GUI.

More learning resources

Check out our Quick Start Guide for more details on Plastic SCM.

For further information, you can also peruse the following:

December 13, 2021 in Games | 8 min. read