Unity 2.5: Unity For Windows!

By: Brandon McCartin (BMcC)

On: March 19th, 2009

Unity Logo: TIGS-Flavoured

Good news everyone! Unity, the rapid cross-platform game development tool used by the likes of Flashbang Studios and Infinite Ammo to create wonderful, technically advanced independent games has just been updated to version 2.5! Along with a slew of new features and improvements, the big news is that it is now available for Windows (being previously Mac-exclusive).

Unity features one-click deployment for Windows, Mac, Wii, Web, and iPhone, a great interface, full physics simulation, networking, and pretty much anything else you might need to painlessly make a full fledged, seemingly big budget 3D game. You can freely download a one month free trial of Unity from their website. For free!

Full Version 2.5 feature list here.
Alec’s thoughts on Unity here.

  • http://www.b-mcc.com/ BMcC

    I made the mistake of downloading Unity _the day_ I got my Mac, missing my chance to use the free trial. Hopefully this will give me a second chance…

    Three cheers for Team Unity!

  • Radnom

    What’s the difference between the Unity Indie and the Unity Pro licenses available? There doesn’t seem to be a comparison feature list anywhere.

  • KniteBlargh

    Radnom, here’s a link to a feature comparison list for ya: http://unity3d.com/unity/licenses

  • Peevish

    Unity seems mostly geared towards 3D games. Is 2D doable without rewriting a ton of crap?

  • http://blurst.com Matthew

    Off the top of my head, Pro has:

    – No Unity branding (indie web content has watermark and indie standalone has splash screen).

    – Asset Bundle streaming (download models/animations/etc dynamically)

    – Realtime shadows

    – Render Textures (needed for refract, glow, other post processing)

    – Video

    – Asset Server (their source control–additional license, but needs Pro as base)

    – C++ plugins (I literally don’t know of any project using plugins–you get the full .NET class library with Mono. I guess custom hardware or VR people use thsi?)

    Of these features we really only make use of Render Textures and the Asset Server.

    @Peevish: 2D is quite dooable. Alec is mostly doing 2D with it and seems quite happy. I know he’s made some of his own tools, although not sure exactly what and why.

  • Peevish

    Hella. Looks like I’ve got my next 30 days planned.

  • Mischief Maker

    So does this mean new games made with unity will be non-browser games?

  • Alec

    Unity could always make executables for PC or Mac. (even when the editor was Mac only)

    Some people don’t seem to realize this!

  • captain_duck

    So does this require coding? It probably does by the looks of it.

  • Alec

    In terms of 2D, we didn’t have to write too many tools.

    The default editor works pretty well, and the new editor in 2.5 has some nice new features that should make it even easier.

    Unity does let you write custom editor scripts that help reduce annoying tasks to a single click.

    One of the annoyances of 2D is layering. If you use alpha blended sprites, it won’t depth sort them in the way you expect all the time. There are a number of ways around this, however.

    The other thing we wrote was an animation system that basically uses a texture that you provide with all the frames of animation, and manages setting the texture coordinates so that it looks like its changing frames.

  • http://blurst.com Matthew

    @Mischief Maker:

    For us, no. We plan to keep making web games. As Alec mentioned Unity could always spit out standalone builds (any of our games work in standalone, too, Blurst login/achievements/etc and all). It’s quite literally a radio button on build options.

  • Derek

    I’ve been playing around with Unity and doing some 2d stuff. Here’s a 2d animation script that I’ve been using:


    Does the job! I may start a thread on TIGForums for useful Unity scripts like this to help people get started.

  • Derek

    Also, yay Brandon! <3

  • http://0xdeadc0de.org/ Eclipse

    uhm i think i may use it for a small game :) great stuff

  • http://www.mawsoft.com/blog Impossible

    C++ plugins (I literally don’t know of any project using plugins–you get the full .NET class library with Mono. I guess custom hardware or VR people use thsi?)

    I can think of a few reasons that are much simpler than custom hardware :). Things like custom physics (use Havok or Bullet instead of PhysX…) or audio (FMOD, WWise, XACT) plugins, procedural texture or geometry generation, custom networking, etc.

    The amount of code written in CC++ dwarfs the .NET framework. The “custom C++ plugin” functionality is basically .NET DLLImport, btw.

  • http://lumberingdream.com/ !CE-9

    Torque looked daunting enough all right. Now Unity looks the closest to a REALLY good reason to learn something that has the looks of a new programming language at first glance.

    Futurama reference FTW BTW.

  • http://www.b-mcc.com/ BMcC

    Hehe, the wifey and I have been watching the Futurama movies the last couple nights. :P

  • anuto

    Unity isn’t cross-plattform. It only runs on Windows and Mac.

  • http://www.b-mcc.com/ BMcC

    You use it to create games across multiple platforms. Don’t get smart with me.

  • anuto

    When I say cross-plattform I mean you can run it on ANY platform that has the needed performance and tools (compiler etc.). Most web pages, JavaScript and so on are cross-plattform, many rich-web applications (e.g. Flash Player) are not.

  • http://blurst.com Matthew


    Oh hush. Let’s quote Wikipedia and move on: “A cross-platform application may run on as many as all existing platforms, or on as few as two platforms.”

    And let’s be honest. You’re likely defining “cross-platform” as “Linux”. So here you go: http://tirania.org/blog/archive/2008/Nov-14.html

  • pnutz

    anuto’s beef is obviously that it doesn’t run on linux. If it doesn’t cross that platform, then it isn’t cross platform.

  • anuto

    Not really. Flash runs on Linux

  • anuto

    And it’s still not really cross-platform. Ever seen a flash player run on the iPhone?

  • http://www.mawsoft.com/blog Impossible

    Cross platform means runs on two or more platforms, Unity is cross platform. Nothing runs on every platform that has ever existed, and there is no guarantee that any software will run on future platforms.

  • Snow

    Exactly like Impossible said, nothing runs on every platform that ever existed, but I hope Unity can run on an Intelevision II. :P

    I hope 2D is not too daunting. I want to use UNITY for 2d apps and also 2.5d apps/games/animations.

    I’m sure it’s going to take me more than a year to learn before I can make an app of some kind lol.

  • falsion

    How much coding knowledge do you need to know to use this effectively?

    It looks like from the site, you can make a game without having to code at all. Is that correct or am I mistaken?

    The site isn’t really very clear about this other than the fact that C++/Python/C# can be used for “scripting.”

  • falsion

    er, actually forget what I said. I followed the links in the fine print and read more about it from Blurst’s tech blog.

    So you can set up all the graphical and design stuff without having to code it in. The finer details like the ingame behaviors and such can be scripted in. The “Mono” scripting language they have set up looks pretty straight forward too.

    Looks pretty cool. Maybe I’ll give it a try, but I don’t want to download it and not be able to use it thus wasting a perfectly good trial period.

  • http://iterationgames.com jph

    yes,. that is what I did, installed it to have a quick look, not realising that it is a time limited demo,. . I am still plugging away at my Cockpit entry,. so lossing a week of demoing,. . :(

  • Random

    I’m not a fan of the fact that nowhere easily that I could find outlines the differences between Indie and Pro.