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2020.2.0

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Released July 23rd, 2020

2D package improvements

2D
Package
  • Streamlined menus: 2D menu items are now displayed in dedicated top-level menus for object and asset creation, including menus for more recent features.
  • Improved 2D Default Assets: Default assets for 2D now include a set of basic shapes as well as Tile Palettes and Sprite Shape Profiles.
  • 2D Animation now includes 2D Inverse Kinematics (IK): 2D IK has been integrated into the 2D Animation package as of version 5.0. along with hideable gizmos and better visualization of IK handles.

Adaptive Performance 2.0

Mobile
Package

The Adaptive Performance package allows you to get feedback about the thermal and power state of your mobile device and react appropriately.

Apple Silicon Support

Desktop

Addition of support for Mac hardware with "Apple Silicon" CPU/GPU.

ARCore Support

Package
xR

ARCore package updates to enable the following features:

  • Adding support for ARRaycast trackables. To learn more about the underlying ARCore API see Google's ARCore Docs.
  • Adding Depth option to ARCoreSettings. This indicates whether or not ARCore Depth API support is required for a specific application. See the ARCore Depth API Docs for more details.
  • Improved multi-threaded rendering.
  • Enhanced camera configuration.

ARKit Support

Package
xR

ARKit package updates to enable the following features:

  • Adding support for tracked (i.e. persistent) raycasts.
  • Enabling additional possible ARKit configurations by allowing developers to specify which camera to use. Previously, the appropriate camera was inferred based on other configuration parameters.
  • Adding ARKit Camera Grain exposure support for iOS 13 and above.
  • Adding support for ARKit environment depth through the AR Foundation AROcclusionManager.
  • Adding support for scene mesh generation through ARMeshManager.

C# 8 Support

Scripting

Unity support for C# 8, minus default interface methods (Unity will emit a friendly error message if you use default interface methods).

You can find out more about C# 8 features here.

Consistency check for asset importers

Asset Management

Consistency check functionality to verify that asset importers produce deterministic results from a given input and set of dependencies.

The consistency check can be activated either by manually reimporting an asset or via the “-consistencyCheck” or “-consistencyCheckSourceMode” command line arguments.

Hierarchy View Improvements

Editor
  • Can set a game object as “default parent” in the hierarchy; newly created or dragged into the scene objects will get parented under that.
  • “Create Empty Parent” context menu item on game objects; wraps selection into a new empty parent object.
  • Newly created objects go into “rename” mode by default. This can be turned off via hierarchy window settings menu.
  • Version control integration (Perforce) can display VCS status overlays for prefabs in hierarchy.
  • More intuitive shift-click behaviour to select items (extends selection from previous click, not from first click).

Import pipeline for 2DArray & 3D textures

Graphics
Importers

“Flipbook” layout images (a grid of columns/rows with individual images) can now be imported as 2DArray or 3D textures.

Improve IL2CPP Iteration Time

Performance
Scripting
  • 0-Change rebuilds in IL2CPP platforms: IL2CPP conversion from .NET assemblies to C++ is skipped when making changes to assets that don’t involve code changes, for example to materials, shaders or prefabs. This improves artist workflows and speeds up iteration.
  • IL2CPP player build time improvement: the process of converting .NET assemblies into C++ files has historically been single-threaded. In Unity 2020.2, the application that processes the conversion (il2cpp.exe) takes advantage of modern multi-core processors, dramatically decreasing the overall IL2CPP player build times.

Inspector Improvements

Editor
  • Array and List variables use reorderable list UI control by default. Can use [NonReorderable] attribute on C# variables to fallback to the old non-reorderable control.
  • Mesh inspector can visualize blend shapes when they are present, and can also pan/zoom into the viewed mesh.
  • Player settings Scripting Defines UI improvements - no longer just a single text field, but a full array control for easier editing.
  • When multiple game objects are selected, the total selected count is displayed near the GameObject name field.
  • TextAsset inspector performance improvement for large files.
  • Game Object Layers 3, 6 and 7 were marked as “reserved for Unity” previously; now they can be freely edited and used.
  • Improved UI of Editor Layouts menus/dialogs.
  • Build Settings window is dockable now.
  • Numbers with “f” suffix can be pasted into numeric inspector fields now, e.g. “1.5f”.

Mobile Notifications 1.3

Mobile
Package

Major refactor to the Mobile Notifications package with bug fixes and improvements.

Package Manager: Scoped Registries Management UX

Package Manager

Editor UI for providing context and management for external package registries. This provides better clarity on package provenance when you use the scoped registries functionality to configure your own registries for private package hosting.

Progressive Lightmapper Improvements

Graphics
Lighting
  • Increasing the bounce limit for both GPU and CPU Lightmappers.
  • Adding Blue Noise Sampling to improve the quality of lightmaps.
  • Reducing memory usage in the GPU Lightmapper. When baking large lightmaps progressive updates will be disabled when memory runs low. Additionally, the Lightmapper will automatically throttle memory usage internally. This enables the GPU Lightmapper to bake larger projects.

Project View Improvements

Editor

Making asset rename & move operations undoable.

Recorder 2.5

Package
Video

Unity Recorder is now a fully Released package as of version 2.5.

Use the Unity Recorder package to capture and save data during play mode. For example, you can capture gameplay or a cinematic and save it as an mp4 file.

You can set up the following types of Recorder:

  • Animation Clip Recorder: generates an animation clip in .anim format.
  • Movie Recorder: generates a video in .mp4 or .webm format.
  • Image Sequence Recorder: generates a sequence of image files in .jpeg, .png, or .exr (OpenEXR) format.
  • GIF Animation Recorder: generates an animated .gif file.
  • Audio Recorder: generates an audio clip in .wav format.

Safe Mode

Asset Management

Safe Mode is a feature to guide you through the process of fixing script compilation errors that can come about from upgrading a project created in an earlier version of Unity.

In Safe Mode, non-script assets don't get imported until all script compilation errors have been fixed. This avoids the potential double-importing of assets that could trigger from invalidation of scripts after fixing compilation errors. Additionally, only a limited Unity assembly domain is loaded when Safe Mode is active: assemblies and package assemblies are not loaded. This allows you to concentrate on resolving script compilation issues first, before Unity exposes other issues that may need addressing, but that are not useful to report until script compilation is clean.

During Safe Mode, the UI is limited to providing the functionality that is relevant for fixing the script compilation errors. Game Hierarchy, Scene View, etc. are not available, for instance.

Scene View Improvements

Editor
  • Thicker Move/Rotate/Scale tool handles by default (thickness can be set in preferences). Additionally, improving their picking logic, particularly for cases when it was not intuitive before.
  • Multiple selected prefabs can be dragged into the scene view from the project view. Previously such operation was placing just one of the dragged prefabs.
  • “Shaded Wireframe” scene view mode now works with HDRP/URP.
  • Optimizing Gizmos rendering for large selections; up to 4x faster in some cases now.
  • Keyboard shortcut for scene camera placement copy/paste. By default, there’s no key assigned, but you can assign it in the shortcut manager.
  • Frame Selected (“F” shortcut) on an already framed object now zooms into its pivot point.
  • More intuitive ctrl/cmd-click behaviour to deselect already selected prefabs.

SRP10 - HDRP Updates

Graphics
  • IES Profiles and Light Cookies
  • Fabric, Hair, and Eye material samples: Use these materials as references and addition of new shader graph nodes dedicated to eye rendering.
  • Improved reflections: Screen-space reflections on transparent Materials, and planar reflection probe filtering closer to physical behavior.
  • Screen-space global illumination.
  • Physical depth of field: More expensive but more physical.
  • Graphics Compositor: combine multiple layers of rendering with different post-processing volumes and rendering settings. Can be used to composite video with real-time CG graphics.
  • Streaming Virtual Texturing out of preview.
  • Decal Layers + Angle fading: associate decals with specific meshes + tweak rendering depending on view angle
  • HDRI flowmap: Allows to fake movement of clouds on a static HDRI.
  • Histogram exposure: Advanced exposure control with histograms and associated metering debug views.
  • Improved Physical lights: Intuitively choose light values with new Icons for Fluorescent, Shade, Blue Sky added to the temperature slider, intensity presets and UX fixes. Addition of range attenuation to box-shaped spotlights to make the Light shine uniformly across its range.
  • Real-time Ray tracing: colored shadows, reflections on transparent, overall performance and quality improvement.
  • Path tracing (Subsurface Scattering, Depth Of Field, Fog): RTX only.
  • Performance and Memory optimizations.
  • Improved anti-aliasing: Alpha to mask (for materials with alpha + MSAA) + Improvements on Temporal and contact shadows anti-aliasing
  • New debug views and new volume explorer (HDRP debug window): draw new render passes (eg: light decomposition), light layers, quad overdraw & vertex density.
  • Offline recording: Addition of accumulation sampling, path tracing convergence, and custom render pass export API (Integration in Unity Recorder to follow).

SRP10 - ShaderGraph Updates

Graphics
Package
  • Master Stack and Stage Blocks: Replacing fixed-function master nodes with a flexible stack of shader features. Enables you to build graphs that work on URP & HDRP simultaneously.
  • Internal Inspector: Addition of a contextual inspector panel within the Shader Graph window, letting you better organize data in the graph and have improved layout of settings.
  • Material Inspector Override per-Graph: You can create your own Material Inspector and assign it to your graph.
  • Node Alignment: As you drag a node, it will snap to other nodes (on the X and Y axis) in your graph to allow cleaner layouts.
  • Redirect (Elbow) Node: A node allowing you to manually route edges to make graphs neat and readable. 
  • Source Control-friendly file format Improvements: allowing you to better view changes and resolve conflicts.

SRP10 - URP Updates

Graphics
Package
  • Adding support for Screen Space Ambient Occlusion.
  • Adding support for the Shadowmask Mixed Lighting Mode for Global Illumination.
  • Adding support for GPU instanced mesh particles on supported platforms. 
  • Adding support for additional surface inputs: Detail Map, Detail Normal Map, Height Map, Parallax Map.
  • Adding Clear Coat material support.
  • Improving shadow settings: Shadow Cascade Count (1,2, 3 or 4), Control By Distance, Shadow Distance Fade.
  • Improving Shader Stripping.
  • Adding Global Illumination support to SpeedTree.
  • Adding support for Normal Texture generation in a pre-pass.
  • Adding an option to enable/disable Adaptive Performance when the Adaptive Performance package is present in the project.

SRP10 - VFX Graph Updates

Graphics
Package
  • CPU Output Event: synchronize lights, sound, physical reactions, or gameplay (based on Spawn Events via a delegate interface in C#)
  • Per-particle Mesh LOD: optimize your effects by setting LOD meshes based on the screen size in the mesh output.
  • Multi-Mesh: use up to 4 meshes with the same mesh output to add per-particle variety to your effects.
  • Culling optimizations: culling is done with compute shaders to discard the rendering of inactive or off-screen particles efficiently.

Support reference assemblies in the compilation pipeline

Scripting

Unity will use Roslyn Reference Assemblies to skip compilation of references (to a modified asmdef assembly) by default if the public assembly metadata does not change. For example, if you modify only private methods or fields, only the modified assembly will be recompiled.

Version Control Improvements

VCS
  • Perforce integration better understands “exclusive checkout” file status now.
  • Asynchronous status queries VCS setting is on by default now.
  • “-vcsModeSession” command line argument for the Editor: sets VCS mode only for the launched editor session (mostly useful for CI).

2021.1.0

Download Beta

Beta in progress

2D Animation Improvements

2D
  • Multi-Character Workflow Improvements with Sprite Swap.
  • Simpler and more robust key-framing.
  • Improved character setup by adding skeletons that support reuse for variants of a main skeleton.

2D Graphics Improvements

2D
Graphics
  • Adding Camera Sorting Layer Texture. This can be accessed and manipulated in shaders. Applications for this include creating water or heat haze effects. It is similar to the Opaque Texture in URP.
  • Replacing Parametric Lights with a set of preconfigured Freeform Lights for typical shapes.
  • Adding a smoother falloff for Freeform Lights.
  • Improving performance for 2D Lights.

2D World-building Improvements

2D
World Building
  • Improving Sprite Shape height interpolation for smoother Sprite Shapes.
  • Tilemap Extras available as a pre-release package. This includes a selection of tools built on top of Tilemap, including Rule Tile, Animated Tiles, Group Brush, Random Brush and GameObject Brush.

Alembic 2.1

Animation
Package
Video

The Alembic package allows you to import (and export) Alembic files into your Unity Scenes, where you can playback and record animation directly in Unity. It brings in vertex cache data from 3D modelling software, such as facial animation (skinning) and cloth simulation (dynamics). When you play it back inside Unity, it looks exactly the same as it did in the 3D modelling software.

Version 2.1 adds:

  • Unity Recorder integration (compatible with Unity Recorder 2.2.0 or newer - see the forum for further information).
  • Performance improvements for importing Alembic files more efficiently.

Burst 1.5

Package
Scripting

Burst 1.5 brings lots of bugfixes and introduces:

  • Apple silicon support.
  • Adding support for calling Burst code directly from C# without using function pointers.
  • Adding support for creating profiler markers from Burst code.
  • Adding support for passing strings between methods.
  • Improved codegen.
  • Full support for ARMv7 and ARMv8-A Neon intrinsics (out of experimental).
  • Adding support for LLVM 11 to bring the latest and greatest code generation benefits to Burst.
  • Changes to inliner heuristics to improve build time and reduce executable size.
  • Adding support for exceptions thrown from Burst to contain a call stack.

Cinemachine 2.7

Cinematics
Package
  • Adding full support for physical cameras, so users who work with physical cameras can control all parameters from Cinemachine virtual cameras.
  • 2D camera confiner improvements, enabling confining of cameras using complex boundaries.
  • Moving the Cinemachine under the GameObject menu to align with other forms of object creation.

Device Simulator

Mobile

Integration of Device Simulator (which was previously available as a preview package) into the Unity core.

Device Simulator allows you to iterate fast in-Editor when developing for mobile by replacing game view with a mobile simulation.

Editor Search

Editor Core

Addition of the Quick Search package directly into the Editor with an updated UI for better integration.

This feature allows you to easily find anything in the Editor, reducing the tedious and difficult process of locating assets, game objects, settings, and even menu items for large projects. 

ETC2 runtime compression support

Mobile

Adding ETC2 support for Texture2D.Compress to enable runtime texture compression, including on mobile devices.

FBX Exporter 4.0

Exporters
Package

This becomes a Released package in 2021.1 and includes stability improvements. The package exports a scene reference for animation, allowing you to interoperate with popular DCCs (such as Maya and Max). It’s also possible to record animations in-Editor, which lets you export references to Maya and Max so that they can re-key animations.

Major update for Unity Purchasing (IAP) to include components previously delivered via Asset Store

Package
Services

Version 3 of com.unity.purchasing includes the Unity IAP components previously delivered via the Asset Store and the Service Window "Import" button. This provides a streamlined user experience for adding In-App Purchasing to new projects. Existing projects will require additional steps to ensure smooth integration.

Instructions are available on the Forum and package description.

Package Lifecycle Update

Package Manager

The new package lifecycle, which comes into effect with 2021.1, introduces more rigour to the way we publish packages but also revisits how we show and label them in the Package Manager UI. These changes are designed to provide you with a clearer and more consistent experience.

See the linked forum post for full details.

Precision Time API

Desktop

The current time API in Unity is represented by a float, which long-running games and servers are able to overflow/wraparound. This new API has double precision, thus provides ample additional heardroom.

Recorder 2.5

Package
Video

Unity Recorder is now a fully Released package as of version 2.5.

Use the Unity Recorder package to capture and save data during play mode. For example, you can capture gameplay or a cinematic and save it as an mp4 file.

You can set up the following types of Recorder:

  • Animation Clip Recorder: generates an animation clip in .anim format.
  • Movie Recorder: generates a video in .mp4 or .webm format.
  • Image Sequence Recorder: generates a sequence of image files in .jpeg, .png, or .exr (OpenEXR) format.
  • GIF Animation Recorder: generates an animated .gif file.
  • Audio Recorder: generates an audio clip in .wav format.

Texture Import Time Optimizations

Editor
Importers

Texture data usually account for the majority of game assets. 2021.1 brings significant optimizations to texture import times:

  • Generally, texture import is around 1.3x faster due to improved multi-threading, SIMD and data flow optimizations.
  • Mobile ETC format texture compression is 2.7x faster.
  • Mobile ASTC format texture compression is 2.6x faster.
  • Mobile PVRTC format texture compression is 1.1x faster.

On a 2GB testing project with 400 real-project textures with various settings, import times on a test PC:

  • Import for PC: down from 141sec to 111sec
  • Import for Android (ETC format): down from 720sec to 266sec (7 minutes saved)
  • Import for Android (ASTC format): down from 1568sec to 602sec (16 minutes saved)

Visual Scripting - Package Release

Package

Unity 2021.1 integrates visual scripting as part of its core functionality. Visual scripting helps all team members create scripting logic with visual, drag-and-drop graphs instead of writing code by hand. Artists and designers can now get more done in the Editor without requiring help from programmers, while programmers can quickly implement ideas for faster prototyping and iteration.

  • Integration as a core Unity capability: Visual scripting workflows have been adjusted for clarity and for unification with other Unity tools and some menus, windows, nodes, notions, or namespaces have been renamed for consistency.
  • Now available as a package: The Visual Scripting package can be revealed in the Package Manager by enabling “Pre-Release packages” during this beta, and it’s also available by default with new projects. Visual scripting preferences have been integrated into Unity Editor preferences and project settings.
  • Workflow optimizations and integrations: The visual scripting workflow has been optimized to maximize productivity. Graph editor, Blackboard and Graph Inspector have been consolidated into a single window, and units are generated automatically the first time the graph window is opened. Ahead-of-time (AOT) pre-compilation is automatic. Also, visual scripting now provides dedicated support for the new Input System. To get the new nodes, units need to be regenerated after you add the Input System package.