Unity Game Development is a popular topic among gaming enthusiasts. Read this complete Unity game development guidelines to if you you ever wondered about how your favorite VR game was created? Or how two brothers, Chad & Jared Moldenhauer, built a hit indie title like Cuphead that sold more than one million copies globally within two weeks of release? Well, they were built using Unity Game Engine

According to Unity’s statistics, 50%+ of all mobile, PC, and console games are made using Unity. So, if you’re looking to build a game, Unity development is the right option! According to Grand View Research, Unity 3D Game Development is a large part of a ~$200 Billion Game Industry. Also, Unity’s 2021 Gaming Report shows that Unity is the game engine of choice for over 60% of game developers. 

Keeping these stats in mind, Unity Game Development is a hot topic these days. With the rising importance of Virtual Reality (VR), Unity has shot to the forefront of this VR revolution. Unity development powers over 60% of all AR / VR content. So, this article will address all your questions and provide information about Unity Development and how to make a Unity game. 

By reading this Unity game development tutorial, you will have a good idea about Unity’s history, advantages, the cost of developing games, and other background information. Then, the article will elaborate on the guidelines on how to make a Unity game. Let’s begin.

Unity Game Development Summary

Before diving into the detailed Unity Game Development Tutorial, you might find a summary of the important information on Unity Development useful. So, I have compiled a list of basic facts in the following summary table. As a result, you can get an overview of the crucial aspects of Unity Development to understand how to make a unity game.

Game Types2D, 3D, AR, VR, XR
Game GenresAction, Fighting, Shooter, Survival, Battle Royale, Action-adventure, Stealth, Survival, Horror, Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing, Simulation, Sports, Strategy
Game PlatformsiOS, Android, Windows, Linux, macOS, Facebook, Instagram, Universal Windows Platform (UWP), tvOS, Android TV
Game DevicesDesktop, Smartphone, Console, Tablet, VR Headset, TV
Unity Development CostThe Cost for a Basic Unity Game Starts at around $20,000.
Table 001: Unity Game Development Summary

What is Game Development?

Game Development is the process of building a video game from inception to deployment. The first step is idea generation. It is important to explain your vision for the game to everyone involved. So, the game experts can bring your dream to life.

First, a game designer sketches and animates the game elements like characters, objects, and the environment. Next, the game developer programs the game to include the logical progression of the story. In the early days of game development, developers wrote their code from scratch. Soon, however, game engines like Unity were released to facilitate development.

After the game has been designed and built, it is playable. However, it is beneficial to perform testing of the written code to iron out bugs and issues. So, a game tester conducts detailed testing processes to find and eliminate problems in the code. 

Once the game has been tested, it is ready for deployment. Your audience can now play your game on supported devices. So, this article aims to address your questions on how to make a Unity game.

What is a Game Engine?

Game Engines are special software that helps game developers create video games easily. These engines, also called frameworks, provide graphics, physics, audio, video, and animation functionality.  

Game developers can reuse the game engine functionalities to reduce game development time. Popular game engines include:

  • Unity
  • Unreal Engine
  • CryEngine
  • Cocos2d
  • Godot 
  • Lumberyard

The primary use of a game engine is to build games. However, game engines are now powerful enough for other functionality, like 3D visualizations for building digital twins. 

Digital Twins are virtual representations of material objects and processes. Companies across various industries can build digital twins for added insights and innovation.

What is Unity Game Development?

Unity is a real-time, cross-platform game engine for building 2D, 3D, AR, and VR games. It is the ideal platform for artists, designers, developers, and testers to collaborate on a single project. 

The Unity game engine is free for individuals for school and personal projects. However, teams can choose Plus, Pro, and Enterprise plans for better functionalities and support.

Unity has a very involved community. Thus, answers to problems are easy to come by. Also, the Unity Asset Store has a large collection of assets and plug-ins to be bought and sold. 

Unity game development involves using Unity’s robust ecosystem to build games for 25+ platforms across desktop, mobile, console, VR, AR, TV, and the web. 

History of Unity Game Engine

Unity’s developers launched the game engine at 2005’s Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) event. Their goal was to democratize game development by making Unity easily accessible to developers. 

Initially, they released Unity exclusively for Mac OS X. Later, Unity added support for Windows and Browsers. So, let’s look at the major versions of Unity and what they added to Unity game development. 

  • Unity 2.0 – launched in 2007 with 50 new features. Support for the Apple App Store added.
  • Unity 3.0 – launched in 2010 with support for consoles, PC, and Android for Unity 3D game development. Becomes the top game engine for mobile platforms.
  • Unity 4.0 – launched in 2012 with DirectX 11 and Adobe Flash support. Mecanim animation support added.
  • Unity 5.0 – launched in 2015 with native support for Nintendo Switch, Google Daydream, Facebook Gameroom, and the Vulkan graphics API.
  • Unity 2017-present – from 2017 onwards, Unity releases that year’s version (i.e., for 2022, the version is called Unity 2022). New features include Virtual Reality Development support. 

Now that we know the history of Unity game development let’s explore some of the features available in Unity.

Features of Unity Game Engine

Unity is a preferred tool for game developers because it provides a full set of features for creating, launching, and monetizing games and experiences. 

2D and 3D Graphics

Unity is widely used for both 2D and 3D game development. 2D games use flat graphics with no camera perspectives. However, a 2D game can include 3D graphics for style and depth. 

3D games use Unity’s camera to add perspective. As a result, objects near the camera appear larger. Also, the objects use 3D geometry to give them three dimensions. Thus, 3D objects appear solid with textures and materials. Also, using 3D, developers can build Unity VR game development solutions.

Physics

Unity has an in-built physics engine to handle the physical interactions of objects with the environment. So, using the physics engine, the game developer can adjust object collisions, accelerations, gravity, and other natural forces. 

By default, Unity enables the object-oriented physics engine. These experiences run on a single core and thread. Recently, Unity has added a data-oriented technology stack for faster, lighter, and optimized multi-threading. 

Scripting

A Unity game developer writes code to control the operation of the game. In Unity, this is called scripting. For example, the developer writes C# code to handle the object hierarchy and order of events in-game. 

Unity scripts can create graphical effects. Also, the Unity game programmer can control object behavior and the AI system for the characters to get an interactive experience. 

Audio and Video

Unity offers advanced support for audio and video integration into gameplay. A Unity expert can produce audio and video outside Unity using tools like Apple Logic Pro.

Unity supports 3D sound with tools for mixing and mastering sound. In addition, developers can add advanced properties like Ambient Occlusion and Spatial Blend. Finally, Unity game developers can integrate video into the gameplay as cut-scenes.

Animation

The Unity animation system helps developers easily animate objects and characters. Humanoid animation is made easy for artists and animators with Unity. 

A character is animated by applying code via script. These scripts are reusable so that you can apply the same script to different characters. As a result, the animation process is quicker with Unity. 

Unity’s navigation system helps game developers build characters that intelligently move around the game world. Navigation meshes are automatically created from the scene geometry. 

The off-mesh links help with actions like jumping off a ledge or opening a door. Also, dynamic obstacles trigger Unity’s runtime character navigation scripts.

Benefits of Unity Game Development

We have seen what Unity is and the various features it provides. So, you might have the question, what are the benefits of using Unity for game development? 

According to Game Developer, 47.3% of all games are made using the Unity game engine. Unity is most popular for game development among hobbyists and indie developers. 

So, before you learn how to make a Unity game, you should know about the benefits of the engine. Unity development provides the following advantages and benefits for building games: 

Free to Start

The Unity game engine is free for individuals to get started with Unity 2D and 3D development. Users get all major features in the free version. 

A large group of developers can subscribe to the pro versions for high-end features like 3D composition booster, sound channels, and feature playback. 

Unity game development lets developers make full version games without raking up high costs. 

Extensive Platform Support

Unity has extensive platform support for game development. Developers can build Unity games on Windows, macOS, and Linux machines. Also, Unity development is supported on the following platforms: 

  • Mobile Platforms – iOS, Android
  • TV Platforms – tvOS, Android TV
  • Desktop Platforms – Windows, Mac, Linux, Universal Windows Platform (UWP)
  • Console Platforms – PlayStation (PS4, PS5), Xbox (Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S), Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia
  • Web Platforms – WebGL
  • Virtual Reality / Extended Reality Platforms – Oculus Quest, PlayStation VR, Apple’s ARKit, Google’s ARCore, Magic Leap, Windows Mixed Reality (HoloLens), and via Unity XR SDK Steam VR, Google Cardboard.

Due to Unity’s support for multiple platforms, an app built for one platform can be easily ported to other platforms by the developer. As a result, the process of building cross-platform games is faster and more efficient.

Built-in IDE and Third-Party Support

An Integrated Development Environment (IDE) allows the developer to have a one-stop shop for writing code. Unity’s built-in IDE supports multiple programming languages like C# and C++ for scripting. 

Unity’s IDE is a graphical user interface (GUI) that contains a code editor, compiler, and debugger for complete scripting support. Thus, the developer can work within Unity to build their games from scratch. 

However, for game developers preferring to use third-party IDEs, Unity has you covered! Unity development is supported for the following IDEs for Windows, macOS, and Linux: 

  • Visual Studio
  • Visual Studio Code
  • JetBrains Rider

Support for High-end Graphics

Develop 2D and 3D games with Unity’s high-end graphics features. Creative artists can leverage Unity and third-party software like Blender and Maya to create optimized and stunning graphics. 

Unity 3D game development supports graphics features like: 

  • Render Pipelines – for HD graphics
  • Cameras – orthographic, perspective, physical
  • Post-Processing – to improve the appearance 
  • Lighting Section – for realistic scene lighting
  • Meshes, Materials, Textures, and Shaders – improve realism
  • Particle Systems – for dynamic objects
  • Creating Environments – for world-building
  • Sky – makes scenes appear larger  
  • Optimizing Graphics Performance – helps games run smoother

Supportive Community 

Developing your game with Unity is beneficial due to a large and supportive community of users. As a result, the game engine is constantly updated for Unity 3D game development. 

Due to the Unity development community, users get access to informative posts, forums, and blogs. In addition, the Unity engine gets frequent updates for better rendering, physics, sounds, and controls.

Analytics Support

Data Analytics is an important part of any business today, including game development. Unity development is supported by an Analytics product for end-to-end data analytics. 

You can use analytics to delve into game performance and player behavior. As a result, Unity’s Analytics solution provides real-time insights into your game and audience. Some of the metrics you can view from Unity Analytics are:

  • Days Played Last 7 Days
  • Total Days Played
  • Number of Total Sessions Played
  • Total Real Currency Spent
  • Platforms Played Last 7 Days

Real-Time Gameplay Testing with “Play Mode”

Rapidly test your Unity VR game development implementation or 3D experience with interactive editing. Play Mode is one of Unity’s core features, allowing developers to check the gameplay instantly. As a result, the Unity development professionals can test and review the game as they build it. For example, for Augmented Reality Development, developers can use the play mode to check their game in real-time.

Access to the Unity Asset Store

Unity’s Asset Store holds thousands of assets that help game developers build games faster. The Asset Store is a library of free and paid resources made by Unity and the community. 

Using the Asset Store means developers do not need to build game elements from scratch. Included in the Asset Store are: 

  • 3D Assets – vehicles, props, characters, vegetation and animations
  • 2D Assets – textures, fonts, characters, environments, materials, and UI elements
  • Audio – sound effects, ambient music, and genre-based music
  • Templates – starter packs to get a base game to build upon
  • Tools – for adding useful features like AI and Advanced Physics.
  • VFX – enhance visual effects with shaders and particle effects

A game developer can get these assets from the store to quickly build many aspects of the game. As a result, the Unity game developer does not need to be an expert in every field like audio or VFX.

Unity vs. Other Game Engines Comparison

This Unity game development tutorial has given an introduction to what Unity is. However, before diving into how to make a Unity game, you might wonder if Unity is the right game engine for you. 

The only real competition to Unity for game development is the Unreal Engine by Epic Games. So, how does Unity development compare to Unreal game development? Let’s find out. 

A Brief Summary of Unreal Engine

Unreal Engine is a game engine that supports game development for desktop, console, mobile, and VR platforms. The latest generation, Unreal Engine 5, has raised the bar for high-quality graphics with technologies such as Nanite for advanced geometry. Also, Lumen helps developers with next-gen global illumination. 

Unity vs. Unreal Head-to-Head Comparison Table

I have compiled the head-to-head comparison in table form to make this comparison easier. The following table presents several criteria to compare Unity and Unreal Engine against.

UnityUnreal Engine
Ease of UseSimple to learnHarder to learn
Graphics QualityGood for AAA gamesMore advanced than Unity
Asset StoreMore assetsFewer assets
Scripting LanguageC#C++
PricingFreeFree
CommunityLargestLarge
Official SupportExcellentExcellent
RoyaltiesNo royalties5% after the first $1 million
Target AudienceIndie, 2D, and VR developersAAA-game studios
Table 002: Unity vs Unreal Comparison

As you can see from the Unity vs. Unreal comparison table, both game engines are good at what they do. However, Unity is easier to learn as it is targeted toward indie developers looking to learn how to make a Unity game. As a result, Unity offers a large asset store and charges no royalties.

On the other hand, Unreal Engine is harder to learn but is extremely powerful for AAA graphics. As a result, large studios looking to create next-gen games can use Unreal for their development. However, Unreal Engine charges royalties, so you will have to give Epic Games a share of your profits over $1 million.

Who is a Unity Game Developer?

A Unity Game Developer is an expert who leverages the Unity game engine to build a game. Unity is a very diverse tool for creating various mobile, web, desktop, console, and more projects. As a result, a Unity game developer needs to be skilled in many topics. 

Common Skills of a Unity Game Developer:

  • Scripting with C# to write clear, maintainable, and testable code.
  • Working with Unity Game Assets like meshes, materials, and animations. 
  • 3rd Party 3D design, modeling, and animation tools like Maya and Blender. 
  • Collaborate with other Unity artists, designers, developers, and testers to create a full-fledged game.
  • Conduct comprehensive testing of Unity’s C# code to debug, optimize, and solve issues. 
  • The developer needs to understand Mixed Reality Development and have a working knowledge of VR SDKs from Google, Meta, and other major VR providers for Unity VR development.

A Unity game developer can build 2D, 3D, and XR games for multiple platforms using the skills above. In addition, Unity provides many learning resources, blogs, and documentation, so a Unity VR game development expert can always get help for any issues.

How to Hire a Unity Game Developer

Do you have a Unity game idea in mind? Then, you may want to hire a Unity game developer to bring your vision to life. So, how exactly do you hire a Unity game developer? There are three main options to choose Unity game developers from:

  • Freelance websites like Upwork, Fiverr, Turing, and Toptal. 
  • Game development communities from Reddit, Facebook, and Discord. 
  • Recruitment agencies that can source Unity developers for you.

Before approaching any of these channels, you should know what you want. Also, it would help if you narrowed down factors such as your timeline, budget, and expertise needed. Thus, you can find the exact developer(s) to fit your needs.

Unity Game Development Genres

Understanding the genre of the game you want to build will help you in many ways. Chief among those is the overall theme. For example, an action game will have a faster pace while a horror game will be suspenseful. 

Your game sounds will also depend on the game genre to evoke the right emotions in your gamers. So, let’s see some of the major game genres for Unity 2D and 3D game development.

  • Action – like Fighters, Beat ’em ups, or Shooters. Action games are typically challenging, focusing on hand-eye coordination and reaction time.
  • Adventure – games with storytelling, exploration, and puzzle-solving. 
  • Racing – a racing competition where players aim to finish first. The racing can be a simulation, arcade, kart, or futuristic. 
  • Sports – simulates the playing of various sports like football (soccer), basketball, and skateboarding.
  • Simulation – simulates real-world activities like farming, construction, vehicles, and sports. They are used for training and entertainment.
  • Casino – games typically in a casino, such as Slots, Blackjack, Poker, and Bingo. 
  • Battle-Royale – an online multiplayer game with the goal of being the last player or team standing. 
  • Strategy – a strategy video game focuses on thinking and planning to achieve victory. These include high-level strategy, logistics and resource management.
  • Role-Playing – players control one or more characters based on a well-defined world. The characters undergo development by leveling up as the story progresses. 
  • Horror – these games are designed to scare the gamer. The horror game can be survival, psychological, action, or jump-scare. 

A Unity game developer can build a game based on these genres to reach interested gamers. Furthermore, Unity provides the tools to shake up the industry. For example, you can build a 2D strategy game or a 3D simulation of a popular sport. In addition, the immersiveness of horror games can be amplified with the addition of Virtual Reality (VR). Unity supports them all.

Top Games Built with Unity

The creators of the Unity game engine released the first version in 2005 to make games for Mac OS. Over time, Unity has evolved into a cross-platform game engine, supporting desktop, mobile, AR, VR, console, and other platforms. 

Large companies and indie developers alike use Unity’s wide support for building their games. For example, here at Riseup Labs, we used Unity 3D to build Meena Game and Meena Game 2 for UNICEF. As a result, we now have over 3 million downloads combined in the App and Play Stores!

Unity has built up a large library of successful and popular games. So, let’s explore some of the top games built with Unity.

Cuphead took the gaming community by storm when it was released in 2017. The developers leveraged the power of Unity to build a 2D, hand-drawn game based on cartoons of the 1930s and 1940s. Subsequently, Cuphead proved to be an instant hit, selling 6 million copies to date. 

Ori: Will of the Wisps is a 2D game that uses 2D art and 3D animation to create a gripping story that awed gamers globally. The Unity game engine helped the developers target multiple platforms, reaching the top of Mobile, Desktop, and console charts with over 2 million total sales.

Escape From Tarkov is a thrilling story-based 3D game built with Unity. Furthermore, the game offers a multiplayer mode for cooperative and competitive experience. As a result, this game reached up to 200,000 concurrent players at its peak. 

Subnautica provides gamers with an in-depth underwater world with oceans to explore. The game was built using Unity 3D game development and was released on five platforms. As a result, Subnautica reached immense popularity among gamers, with 6 million copies selling globally!

Unity is the go-to development engine for Artificial and Virtual Reality creators due to its support for all major VR headsets. As a result, some of the most popular AR / VR games were built in Unity! 

Pokémon Go united the gaming world during the summer of 2016 with a trending AR mobile game. Players used their smartphones to locate, capture, train, and battle Pokémons alongside other players in their area. Due to its immense popularity, Pokémon Go reached over a billion downloads globally! 

Coco VR brings the Land of the Dead from the Coco Film to life using Virtual Reality (VR). Players get to wander the vibrant world from Coco and have mini-experiences. As a result, this game showcases the vast capabilities of VR in gaming, with Unity VR leading the way.

The 7 Major Stages of Unity Game Development

The Unity game engine is a comprehensive tool covering 2D, 3D, AR, VR, and XR game development. As a result, Unity provides immense scope to developers for experimentation and innovation in game development. 

It is estimated that the Unity Engine has over 2 Billion monthly active users as of 2021! As such, you may want to get yourself a piece of the pie and join the ever-growing number of Unity game developers!

You need to follow a common process to get started with Unity game development, either yourself or with a professional. Thus, I have listed the major stages of developing games with Unity. So, let’s explore these steps in detail:

Analysis of Game Requirements

When you first decide on building a game, you need to analyze the game requirements. For example, will the game be 2D, 3D, VR, or something else? What platforms am I targeting? What is my budget? These are important questions to answer when embarking on Unity game development.

The analysis stage also identifies potential risks and business requirements. Thus, analysis is essentially a feasibility study of the Unity game project. As a result, you can assess the viability of your game by understanding the advantages and disadvantages. 

Planning the Game

Now that you have a complete idea of the game requirements, you can begin planning. The planning stage covers many aspects like: 

  • Design and Art Style – characters, environment, special items
  • Story and Plot – the game world, character interactions
  • Gameplay – levels, maps, missions
  • Marketing – target audience, competitor analysis, special events
  • Monetization Model – Unity provides a built-in Ads platform 

Conducting a detailed plan before game development will make the development process faster in Unity. 

Designing the Game

Game design is an integral part of your Unity game. A pleasing design will compel gamers to try out your game. Also, your game design sets you apart from other game titles in the market. 

You can apply two main design processes to Unity development; High-Level Design (HLD) and Low-Level Design (LLD)

High-Level Design (HLD) is the initial stage of designing your game. It is described from a generalized point of view. As a result, it is a high-level overview of the design. 

On the other hand, Low-Level Design (LLD) takes the concepts in the HLD and goes in-depth for the technical details.

The game designer can create designs outside Unity using 3rd party tools like Blender and Maya. Conversely, the Unity Asset Store has community-built 2D and 3D designs that can be imported directly into Unity to build your game design. 

Developing the Game on Unity

At this stage, you have the plan and design of the game completed. Thus, you can build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for your game in Unity. 

The MVP is a stripped-down version of your game intended to test your core idea. For example, you can build an MVP to determine if your users find your game mechanics engaging. 

If you get negative feedback, you can go back to the drawing board to fix the elements of your game that require a fix. Or, if you get positive feedback, you can begin building the full game on Unity. 

Game development in Unity uses C# scripting to animate and give life to the game designs. Also, you have to develop the following solutions in Unity:

  • Level Design 
  • Audio Effects
  • Visual Effects
  • Physics and Mechanics 
  • Animation 
  • Rendering 
  • Multiplayer Features (if applicable)
  • AR / VR Integration (if applicable)
  • Payment Gateway Integrations 

The development of games in Unity is accelerated due to the tight integration of the pipeline. Also, games built in Unity are compatible with major platforms. As a result, you can develop your game entirely within Unity. 

Game backends can be immensely complex. Thus, Unity offers many tools and services to simplify the development and management of backends. For example, you can host your game on Unity’s Cloud Code. Also, Unity Economy helps you design and tune your game economy. 

Testing the Game on Unity

Testing is an integral part of the game development process. Unity provides a Test Framework to run automated tests during game development. As a result, you can identify game issues, bugs, and inefficiencies before they can reach the gamers. 

The major testing methodologies that you can follow are: 

  • Functional Testing
  • Unit Testing
  • Multiplayer Testing
  • Load Testing
  • Regression Testing
  • Alpha, Beta, & Gold Testing
  • Payment Gateway Testing

Unity also supports 3rd party code editors like Visual Studio and JetBrains Rider, so you can use their debuggers to debug the C# code.

Deploying the Game with Unity

A stable version of the game is now complete! As a result, you can launch the game on its release platforms like Steam, Google Play Store, and Apple App Store. 

Developers can publish their builds easily on Unity. Also, the game engine does the process on its own. So, you can publish your game build to a variety of platforms. 

The first release of your game is often called Early Access or Alpha Access. Gamers can get your game early to debug or provide feedback and suggestions. Also, they are rewarded for that with special in-game items like weapons and skins. As a result, you can fix some of the issues not found during the game’s initial testing. 

Using the suggestions and feedback from the Early Access gamers, you can fix any lingering bugs in Unity before the final release. As a result, your users will get a bug-free version of the game.

Maintenance and Post-Launch Game Support

There’s work to do once your game is out in the wild! Gamers will want expansions (called DLCs) for added content in your game. Also, your game will need maintenance for any slowdowns or bugs. 

According to Unity’s reports, multiplayer and post-launch content engages gaming audiences further. Thus, constantly adding content to your Unity game will help keep gamers happy. 

If your current game is single-player, you can add an online multiplayer component in Unity. In addition, Unity provides useful tools and services to build multiplayer games faster.

The popularity of gaming has been on the rise for the past few years. Moreover, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated this growth. According to Unity’s 2021 Gaming Report, the number of players gaming during the pandemic rose by 38% in 2020. In addition, the spike in revenues due to the pandemic was 30%. 

So, what are the trends in Unity Game Development? Unity’s 2022 Gaming Report provides us with some insight. Here are the top trends, in no particular order: 

Games made with Unity increased by 93% in 2021. From these, hyper-casual games lead the way, with an increase of 137% over the previous year. 

Other game genres like casual games have risen by 53, while mid-core and hardcore genres grew by 54% and 55%, respectively.

Clearly, Unity game development is growing by the year. Therefore, the time to get into Unity game development has never been better.

Unity has made it easier for developers to build games for multiple platforms. As a result, the number of games released for cross-platforms has doubled compared to five years ago. 

Gamers can now enjoy a game on their home console, then pick up where they left off on their mobile devices on the go. Thus, Unity has helped creators build multiplatform games that help keep gamers from switching games. 

Unity Mobile Gaming Goes from Strength to Strength 

Mobile gaming continues to grow, with an estimated 8% increase in mobile ad revenue. Also, first-day microtransaction purchases have risen by more than 50% year over year. 

Mobile game development with Unity is easier than ever, with indie developers building and publishing iOS and Android games every day. For example, the number of new creators in Unity increased by 31%

Gamers Want Multiplayer Games

The amount of time spent by gamers playing multiplayer games has increased steadily. As a result, Unity has released several products aimed at helping developers with multiplayer game development. 

Gamers also want more content for their games. Having added content to multiplayer games increases user retention. As a result, live games are more popular than ever. 

Many popular games are built as services with regular content updates such as new maps, challenges, game modes, and storylines. So, Unity game development is straying more towards multiplayer, live games.

Unity Development Solutions Besides Games

The Unity platform is commonly thought of as just a game engine. Initially, Unity gained popularity due to its amazing features for game development. However, these days, Unity is used for diverse industries such as Engineering, Retail, and Architecture. 

Let’s explore the many use cases of Unity in industries. 

Training Simulations

Unity’s powerful Virtual Reality (VR) capabilities can be leveraged by companies looking to train their employees. Businesses in healthcare, manufacturing, engineering, and education benefit from fully-immersive training environments

Training in VR has several benefits:

  • Have a lower risk of injury due to heavy machinery or tools. 
  • Safe training of medical professionals on 3D versions of patients.
  • Get hands-on experience with otherwise inaccessible hardware like expensive robots and rare chemicals.

With immersive VR training programs, businesses have higher worker satisfaction, better workplace safety, and lowered incident costs. Thus, Unity VR game development can help with training simulations to aid businesses in improving their workforce capacity.

Digital Twins

A digital twin is the digital or virtual representation of a physical object in 3D. Unity’s 3D visualization tools help businesses in Manufacturing, Architecture, and Automotive industries build real-time, immersive, and interactive digital experiences. 

The main uses of digital twins in the industry are:

  • Monitor and manage operations of physical systems using real-time data from the digital twin. 
  • Use real-time data to identify potential issues and anticipate future operations such as IoT predictive maintenance.
  • Design and build new solutions in the digital twin to assess its viability before building the physical product.

The digital twin empowers businesses to save costs on maintenance, development of new solutions, and training. Thus, the Unity game engine is a powerful tool for businesses to increase operational efficiencies.

Product Configurators

You may be thinking, what is a product configurator? It is a tool that helps customers customize their product’s features and components virtually. As a result, the final product is exactly according to the customer’s expectations. 

Want an example of a product configurator? 

A retail business can offer its clothing items in a virtual 3D environment. Thus, their customers can try different colors, sizes, and variations. Furthermore, the business can enhance its product configurator by offering it in Augmented Reality (AR). As a result, the customer can ensure they get a perfectly fitting garment. 

Unity offers a powerful tool called Unity Forma to create real-time and interactive 3D product configurators. So, businesses can offer custom products to their customers virtually.

Film and Animation

Ever seen a sports broadcast with a virtual set? Then, you have witnessed the power of real-time rendering. Unity is the king of real-time production. 

Filmmakers can leverage the full potential of Unity to build pre-visualizations of their movies. Thus, they can visualize what their final shot will look like to make changes before shooting. 

Animators wanting to create VR experiences can build them with Unity. As a result, their animations will be fluid, thanks to real-time rendering.

Unity Game Development Cost

Unity is one of the more popular game engines for prototyping and developing games. This popularity is mainly due to Unity’s advanced features and functionalities for 2D, 3D, and XR game development. As a result, many indie developers and big businesses use Unity to create cutting-edge games. Unity VR game development is the future of gaming.

So, what is the cost of Unity Game Development? The average cost of building a Unity game is $20,000. The cost depends on various factors such as: 

Cost of Unity Game Engine

Unity is free for individuals and companies to start with. However, there are several pricing tiers for different-sized businesses to choose from. The pricing plans are: 

  • Personal ($0, Free) – for businesses with revenue or funding less than $100K in the last 12 months. 
  • Plus ($399 / yr per seat) – for large businesses with revenue or funding less than $200K in the last 12 months.
  • Pro ($1800 / yr per seat) – for larger businesses with revenue or funding greater than $200K in the last 12 months.
  • Enterprise ($4000 / yr per 20 seats) – for enterprise-level businesses with revenue or funding greater than $200K in the last 12 months.

There may be a monthly/yearly cost to use Unity’s services, depending on your business requirements. However, you get better features and support from Unity with the more advanced plans.

Targeted Platforms for the Game

The platform(s) you publish your game to will also factor into the cost. Launching for multiple platforms takes more time. Thus, you need to factor in the developer salaries for this extra period. 

Mobile games targeted for Android are cheaper to build compared to iOS. As a result, you need to consider whether you want the extra cost (hint: you do). iOS games provide a better gaming experience than Android. 

Complexity of Unity Game Development

The cost of game development also depends on what level of development needs to be done. For example, it will cost more to build a game from scratch. 

You will need to pay for experts in: 

  • Game Design – ~$40 / hour
  • Unity Developer – ~42 / hour
  • Animation – ~$32 / hour
  • Game Testing – ~$31 / hour
  • Sound Designer – ~26 / hour

You need to think about any other experts you need to build your game in Unity. Thus, the cost increases as you have a game with more complexity. In addition, using advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Machine Learning (ML) can cause costs to skyrocket. So Unity VR game development will cost your business more.

Experts in these advanced technologies command a higher fee. The reason is that these experts typically have a higher education background than an average developer. For example, an AI developer earns on average $60 / hour, according to ZipRecruiter.

What is the Future of Unity Game Development?

I have established in the article why Unity is an extremely popular game engine today. So, you may be wondering, what is the future of Unity game development? Thus, let’s explore some of the growing technologies for the Unity game engine. 

The Next-Big Thing: AR, VR, and the Metaverse

You may have heard of the term Metaverse on the news lately. Meta’s Zuckerburg has claimed that the “Metaverse is the next chapter for the internet.” So, what is the Metaverse, and how does it relate to Unity?

The Metaverse uses Augmented (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) to create a virtual world used for gaming, socializing, and education. As a result, Unity will play a big role in making the Metaverse a reality. 

Unity is a global leader for AR and VR development, with a full suite of tools geared towards easy development. So, you can expect a lot of the future Metaverse Development to be done with Unity VR game development tools.

Blockchain Games will Become Mainstream

Blockchain came to prominence due to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. However, it has a promising future in gaming too. And Unity is set to play a big role in it. 

A Blockchain game has two components, the normal game and the Blockchain integration. So, game developers can start with their Blockchain game using Unity’s easy-to-use engine. Then, the developer can integrate the Blockchain into the game using a Blockchain SDK. 

Using Blockchain in gaming presents many benefits. For one, game data like player score, friends, in-game items, and achievements can all be stored in the secure platform Blockchain. As a result, regardless of its platform, every game can securely access the data. 

Rise of Gamification in Industry

Have you ever heard of the term gamification? Gamification uses game elements and mechanics in a non-game setting, such as education and training. Unity’s powerful features can be used by businesses to create interesting gamification solutions. As a result, they can engage their employees better. 

Gamification is set to gain traction in diverse industries due to the popularity of casual gaming. These games make eLearning more exciting for users, leading to better retention of information. For example, having a fun mobile AR experience can encourage employees to take their training seriously. 

Other potential uses of gamification include building Unity VR Game Development solutions for an immersive and accurate experience in many industries. For example, you can imagine how an auto mechanic can benefit from fixing cars in VR without any costly mistakes. Furthermore, adding game elements like leaderboards and trophies can make the experience fun!

Career as a Unity Game Developer

You’ve heard about Unity 3D game development, its features, and the stages. Now, you might be interested in becoming a Unity game developer! So, I am providing some information about choosing Unity game development as a career.

Unity is an incredibly popular game engine. As such, game companies are constantly looking for talented Unity experts. The average salary of a Unity 3D game developer in the US is $88,606 / yr, according to Glassdoor. So, if you become a Unity professional, you get a large pay! 

To become a Unity game developer, you need first to learn Unity! Unity’s website has many helpful tutorials to help a beginner get started. And the best way to learn Unity is by doing small projects. For example, if you want to be a Unity VR developer, completing Unity VR game development projects will look good on your resume. 

What does a Unity developer do? A Unity 3D game development job requires: 

  • C# Scripting to transform the game design into functional games. 
  • Troubleshooting problems in the C# code for current and previous games.
  • Collaborating with other teams like Game Designers, Sound Experts, Animators, Directors, etc. 
  • Test game functionality with in-depth manual and automated testing. 
  • Be proficient in Extended Reality Development tools that are compatible with Unity.

Sounds good? If you are passionate about gaming and this seems like a good career for you, get started today! Learning a skill takes time, and you should build as many projects as possible.

Conclusion

Developing games with Unity is more popular than ever. Businesses and individuals can create incredible experiences using Unity VR game development. So, in this article, I have described:

  • What is game development?
  • What is Unity?
  • Features and Benefits of Unity 3D game development.
  • Step-by-step guide on Unity 3D game development.
  • Cost of Unity 3D game development. 
  • Future of Unity 3D game development.

Now that you have an idea of these topics, you or your business can make an informed decision about your next game. For example, are you going to use Unity? Or, are you interested in a Unity game development career?

I hope you learned something about Unity and game development. Now, look at some commonly asked questions about Unity game development.

Unity Game Development FAQs

I have compiled some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Unity Game Development. Please feel free to comment below if you have any further queries. I will answer any questions on Unity development.

Is learning Unity game development easy?

Unity is a beginner-friendly game engine due to its simple interface. What’s more, Unity provides many tutorials to guide beginners in getting started with Unity game development. Also, Unity’s forum and blog posts give answers to common issues.

Do I have to pay royalties to Unity if my game makes money?

No. Unity is a royalty-free platform. So, you can make your game and enjoy 100% of the profits.

Is Unity good for VR?

Yes, it is. You can get Unity VR development solutions for mobile due to its large user base.

How should I get started with Unity VR game development?

Unity’s own Create with VR guide helps learn Unity VR game development. Oculus and OpenXR are the supported VR platforms on Unity.

Do I need programming for Unity game development?

Yes, you do. The code is required for the game logic. Unity code is written in the C# programming language. However, you do not need to know code before starting Unity game development. Instead, you can learn to program as you learn Unity.

Is Unity better than Unreal Engine?

There is no definitive answer to that. Both game engines have their pros and cons. For example, Unreal Engine is better for AAA high-quality graphics. However, it is harder to learn Unreal Engine. 

On the other hand, Unity is easier to learn and better for AR and Unity VR game development. So, the choice is yours.

Do I need a graphics card for Unity Game Development?

You do not need a dedicated graphics card to run Unity on your computer. For example, your integrated GPU should be enough for simple games, like 2D or a basic mobile game.
 
However, you require a more powerful graphics card for demanding Unity 3D game development or Unity VR game development.

How long will it take to develop games with Unity?

You can build a basic Unity 2D game in less than a month. However, as the complexity increases, the Unity 3D game development time rises too. For example, a AAA game from a big studio can take 2-3 years of development time. In addition, Unity VR game development adds more complexity, thus, taking more development time.

Can I publish my game on Unity for free?

Yes. Build Unity 3D games and sell them using the free version of Unity. They will not charge royalties or any revenue share.

This page was last edited on 27 June 2022, at 11:58 am