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Game Dev Digest Issue #31 - Improving Performance, Developer Tools, Asset Sales, and Plenty More

by Mike Marrone on 02/14/20 10:23:00 am

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.

 

*This post was originally published on GameDevDigest.com

Issue #31 - Improving Performance, Developer Tools, Asset Sales, and Plenty More

This week's digest brings you more great optimization articles. Tune your performance to 11!

There are also some great developer tips including both coding and tools. Check out the videos for some inspiration, and follow that up with some sweet deals on assets below.

Enjoy!


Unity Performance: CPU Slicing Secrets - The common wisdom says "profile, optimize, repeat". Let me warn you: this won't always work. Optimizing low-hanging fruits can gain you a whole millisecond in a day. But when those are gone, speeds of 0.1 milliseconds gains per week can become normal. When that happens, you need other tools such as the Unity CPU Slicing technique.
The Gamedev Guru

How on-demand rendering can improve mobile performance - It’s not always desirable to render a project at the highest frame rate possible, for a variety of reasons, especially on mobile platforms. Historically, Unity developers have used Application.targetFrameRate or Vsync count to throttle the rendering speed of Unity. This approach impacts not just rendering but the frequency at which every part of Unity runs. The new on-demand rendering API allows you to decouple the rendering frequency from the player loop frequency.
Unity

Instancing and Material Property Blocks - By default objects with different materials cannot be instanced together and switching drawcalls is one of the main performance sinks of rendering. Material property blocks (MPBs) allow us a way around that which we can use to change properties on a per object basis.
Ronja Böhringer

Making our Unity Analyzers Open-Source - Here at the Visual Studio Tools for Unity team our mission is to improve the productivity of Unity developers. In Visual Studio 2019 we’ve introduced our Unity Analyzers, a collection of Unity specific code diagnostics and code fixes. Today we’re excited to make our Unity Analyzers Open-Source.
Microsoft

Achieve beautiful, scalable, and performant graphics with the Universal Render Pipeline - Universal Render Pipeline is a powerful, ready-to-use solution with a full suite of artist tools for content creation. You should use this rendering pipeline if you want to make a game that has full Unity platform reach with best-in-class visual quality and performance. We covered the benefits of the Universal Render pipeline in this blog post. In this blog post, we’ll dive into how the Universal Render Pipeline was used to create the vertical slice Boat Attack demo.
Unity

I made an operating system UI within Unity. Thoughts? - About Project Glass: Glass is a simulated operating system user interface (UI) project and it is being made with Unity 2018.4. It is not a real OS, although everything in the package is functional and can be changed easily. Read more on the Reddit and Hacker News threads.
michsky

Porting to Shadergraph - Finally ported my old particles to HDRP shadergraph! Recompile VFX uses 4 different shaders. Here's how we made them (thread).
Phi Compile

Perfect Water Shaders - 1.4.0 Caustics and Foam Update - Now Perfect Water Shaders can really be called PERFECT! This update gives you beautiful caustics, which can be projected on any solid geometry in your water surface. It does not use Projector component, all this stuff is a part of the shader. And also, finally, the thing, everyone were waiting for - water foam! It generates automatically close to the solid objects in the water.
Stanislav Maramygin

Temp Memory Reuse - Temp memory is backed by a fixed size block that’s cleared by Unity every frame. Allocations on subsequent frames return pointers to this same block. The allocated memory therefore isn’t unique. How much of a problem is this? Today we’ll do some experiments to find out!
JacksonDunstan.com

What experts expect from enterprise augmented reality and virtual reality in 2020 - Industry experts and analysts anticipate 2020 will be a breakthrough year for AR and VR in the enterprise sector. Wonder why? We invited 15 AR/VR leaders to share their perspectives and insights in our new report “Top 2020 Trends: Enterprise AR & VR.”
Unity

Reference Image Viewer Editor Window - If you are working on a single monitor, and/or need to have some reference images in view. Here’s a small editor plugin to show a texture on a window.
unitycoder.com

ReadOnlyAttribute.cs - I wrote a custom property to mark variables as ReadOnly! You can get if from here.
Juan Francisco Mora Palomino

Conditional Attributes - Conditional attributes that can be used to show/hide script variables in editor based on some other variable values.
Stefan Sincak

Using Implicit Operators For Serialization - Want to create save files? Need a way to serialize #unity base types? Write small classes to help you with this. Check out this example for Vector3. It uses implicit operators to convert data to objects and vice versa.
Binary Impact

How to make a Developer Console in Unity - Let's create a Developer Console in Unity so that we can easily automate repetitive actions such as giving items to the player or changing scene.
Dapper Dino

Unity Console Clear Shortcut - Are you compulsively spamming that “Clear” button on the console after every message? Well, then I have great news for you! Copy the following script, paste it anywhere you like and you will be able to compulsively spam CTRL+Q!
Anton Semchenko

Interactive Butterfly Flocking - Our butterfly system in Unity is finished! Read up on how we accomplished it!
Sebastian Shearer

Unity 2020.1.0 Alpha 23 - Version 2020.1.0a23 has been released.
Unity

Videos

Coding Adventure: Portals
Coding Adventure: Portals - Experimenting with portals, for science.
Sebastian Lague

Unity 2019.3 — New Features for Programmers - Unity 2019.3 was released on January 27, 2020, and it's packed with a ton of great new features. In this video, I'll share some of my favorite ones for programmers.
Infallible Code

Realtime Animation and Lighting in Unity! (Tutorial) - Want to learn how to optimize lighting for high quality visuals in realtime animation? Let's check out how Unity Technologies did it in our animation Sherman!
Unity

How to make a HEALTH BAR in Unity! - Let's create a simple health bar using the Unity UI-system!
Brackeys

Simple Tower Defense AI in Unity (Place Towers, Fire Projectiles) - Let's make some simple Tower Defense AI. Place towers and Fire Projectiles at Enemies in range. Upgrade Tower Range and Damage.
Code Monkey

Unity Shader Graph - Fire Wings Effect Tutorial - Fire Wings, or any kind of Magic Wing effect, is an VFX that has been used in many games, as something that is part of a Character, as an ability or as a way of transforming or evolving a personage into something majestic and really powerful.
Gabriel Aguiar Prod.

TextureLab -- Free & Open Source Texture Tool - TextureLab is a free and open source procedural texture generation tool, clearly inspired by Substance Designer. Featuring direct Unity material output, you can quickly and easily generate PBR textures in TextureLab.
Gamefromscratch

Assets

Big Music Bundle (Adventure, Epic, Orchestral)
Big Music Bundle (Adventure, Epic, Orchestral) - 76% OFF SALE!

Great library of high quality powerful, epic, cinematic action and adventure tracks! Promote your projects, games or videos with this HQ music!

Part of the Mega Game Music Collection which is also at 33% off right now.
Muz Station Productions Affiliate

Asset Store: 2D Sale - Through February 16, 2020, customers can save 30% on select 2D asset store purchases. Start building your 2D game with powerful assets!
Unity Affiliate

Multi-Scene Loader - Adds a new multi-scene loading system for Edit or Runtime use cases. Unity provides the ability to work with multiple additively loaded scenes at a single time, however there is no 'out of the box' system for handling the loading / unloading of the various scene configurations. This makes working on a multi-user project more complicated than necessary, and most teams end up implementing something similar.
Mike Wuetherick Open Source

Humble Best Of Polygon Game Dev Bundle - Create a polygonal style game in Unity or Unreal engine with this bundle of low poly asset packs! Each pack features heaps of 3D assets including characters, vehicles, buildings, props, environments, and FX to create computer, console, mobile or VR/AR games.

$391 WORTH OF AWESOME STUFF
Humble Bundle Affiliate

Smart Lighting 2D - Winner of the Best Development Tool in the Unity Awards 2019. Smart Lighting 2D is a lightweight and powerful tool to setup lighting for 2D scene very easily. Currently 30% off!
FunkyCode Affiliate

Spotlight

Core Decay
Core Decay - Core Decay is an upcoming retro FPS for mobile and PC. Explore derelict facilities, uncover a vast conspiracy, install cybernetic upgrades as you gain levels, and find a ton of unique weapons and powerups in an old-school shooter inspired by classics such as Doom, Quake and Descent.

Visit their site for links to their devblog, sub-reddit, discord and more to follow along with development.
coredecay.com


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