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Unity Updates, reviews and tutorials from a Microsoft Unity MVP

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Unity Profiles

Around Ludum Dare #38, I came across two great portfolio tools: Unity Connect and Itch.IO. The combination of the two can help your Unity portfolio grow overnight.  The general idea, is that Itch.io has a great system for uploading and sharing WebGL games (and other downloadable forms), and that Unity Connect has a great system for sharing projects over all.
 


itchio-black.png                       lqsfea52djsx.png
(links)
 
We'll start with the basics.  You need WebGL Samples of your unity work.  try looking through any old sample that shows something.  It doesn't need to be complete.  You can take a failed game idea that successfully shows working with changing gravity, and cut everything but that gravity feature away.  
 
Then build to WebGL and upload to Itch.io.  (its uploaded in private mode so you can test before releasing)
 
2 key instructions:  1) set Itch's project type to HTML to get the WebGL option later in the page and 2) upload a zip of the WebGL Build folder created from your Unity project.  It will figure out the zip structure.    
 
2017-05-25_8-19-23.png
 

Next, with the game live and playable, add a new project in Unity Connect.  Add a thumbnail, and have a separate thumbnail for the WebGL playable.  (I.e. something that says 'play now' or similar on it.)  Add any other content, and be sure to describe it for what it is.  Was it a Proof of Concept, where you are focused on one key element?  Was it a starter test project?  Is it actually released somewhere?  Is this just level 1 of a larger pay project?  Is this part of Steam Greenlight?

The more items you have on Unity Connect, the more your profile will stand out.  Keep it up.

You are welcome to connect to me on Connect or Itch.io.

So I've had the chance to try out Unity Hub for a while, and had ups where I completely switched to it, and then downs where I finally got rid of it.  :( 

image5-7.png

When you start Unity, you get the project selection screen.  (Unless you chose to have it auto start on your previous project) Hub is a separate application to replace that screen.  It adds new features, like

  • Multiple versions of Unity
  • Assigning projects to start with specific install versions
  • Right clicking on an install version and having it add a new build target (without all the UI's to monitor)

It worked great initially.  So much so that I uninstalled Unity from the machine (because bug #1, it doesn't recognize existing Unity installations.  it seems like they *have* to be under a specific path/format.  It says you can select existing ones, but it never recognized the version I have) an let it install Unity for me.  Next I also installed the Beta, because it was easy.  It seems far faster to install through Hub, than via download/direct install.

I loved this feature. 

But then some problems started in...

  • Some of the features like Android install, I could not get to work after.  It took a lot of extra steps to resolve, steps I don't recall having to go through on my normal version.  For instance, it could not pick up the JDK install path on its own.  
  • It can't install older versions, like 5.6.  Which seems a huge reason for supporting this.  There where huge transformational changes between 5.6 and 2017.  Some projects just needed 5.6.  It seemed like this was the key reason to have Hub, so I could go back easily.
  • I already had Visual Studio Enterprise installed on my system, and it couldn't register it.  Well not during the install anyway.  I had to go in, and find it by path, but then it didn't have any of the Unity properties installed for Visual Studio.  :(

Ultimately, I ended up uninstalling it, and going back to the base installation of 2017.Latest and VS Enterprise Latest to get everything happy again.  I intend to try Unity Hub again, but will wait until its out of beta.

Check it out / download it here: https://blogs.unity3d.com/2018/01/24/streamline-your-workflow-introducing-unity-hub-beta/

If your needs don't step on those issues, like android or needing to jump back to 5.6, I think its a great product.  

Unity SOLID

 

I gave a presentation at Unity's Unite 2017 Austin conference.  This is actually the first well recorded presentation I gave.  (Everytime I presented in the past, something would fail)
 

"... it was fantastic. The examples and level of depth are probably one of my favorites to date for SOLID. I think it was highly accessible and I've got some of the interns at the Unity Brighton office watching this feverishly. :) Thanks Dan!" - Markus Dugdale

Even if you have no interest in Unity, the SOLID aspects of this are a great for an introduction.  I spent a long time trying to come up with a way to explain it in an easier way.  Complex explanations that only make sense if you already understand it seem to be common place.  Check out Wikipedia's opening statement on "L" (Liskov's Substitution Principle):
 

"... a principle in object-oriented programming stating that, in a computer program, if S is a subtype of T, then objects of type T may be replaced with objects of type S (i.e. an object of type T may be substituted with any object of a subtype S) without altering any of the desirable properties of T (correctness, task performed, etc.)

 Then I get into a Dependency Injection Framework and Unity Unit Testing from within Visual Studio, as can be found here

 

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