For something as complex and grandiose in scale as the concept of Game Development, it’s absolutely mind-blowing how simple it can all be when you break it down. When looking at a creating a video game, the last thing you want to say to yourself is, “Okay, time to make a whole video game!” It’s just overwhelming and makes it really hard to actually sit down and, say, make a cube as a placeholder for your character let alone “make a whole video game”.
Much like anything else, we endeavour to break down a large scale project into bits and pieces and figure out the steps for completing each bit until the project is, suddenly, complete. When did that happen?!
Let’s start with the simplest step there could possibly be. Install your new best friend in the journey to become an amazing game developer, Unity.
Step 1: If you’re just sitting down to start poking around by yourself to learn how to be awesome, you can head over to https://store.unity.com/download?ref=personal and get a FREE copy of the Unity editor. How is this free? Again, mind-blowing.
Step 2: Run the file you’ve just downloaded and install Unity as you would any other application.
Step 3: Make a whole video game!
I kid. Now you’ve got Unity Hub installed so let’s explore it a bit.
In the screen above, you can see my Unity Hub already has a metric ton of little projects I’ve started up and begun messing around in. If you just installed Unity Hub, yours is going to be blank. You can use the big blue “NEW” button to create a brand spankin’ new Unity project using the latest version of Unity you have installed. Before we do that, let’s dip briefly into the left-hand sidebar items.
Projects: This is going to be where all your Unity projects are listed and can be launched from. When you create a new project, or add an existing one that you’ve downloaded or pulled from somewhere else. It shows you the path to where the project is, the version of Unity that project was created in, the platform you’re creating for, and when it was last modified. You can also remove items from the list, open their path in your OS explorer/finder, or fiddle with Advanced Project Settings if you know what you’re doing. I don’t, so I leave that alone.
Learn: Unity provides a number of tutorial projects that can be downloaded and opened. I’ve messed around with a couple of them, but haven’t gone in depth into them yet. The projects have baked in tutorials that help you to navigate the interface of Unity and teach you core concepts in a fun and engaging way.
Community: Arguably the best part of working as a programmer is the people working towards similar goals. Unity has a number of different ways to engage with the huge community of programmers currently hacking away at the next Valheim. Ask questions, find answers, give solutions, make friends… It’s all here to help you make your way in this world.
Installs: This lists the different Unity versions you’ve got installed on your system. The Unity versions your projects are using are going to be very important. The version is going to dictate the tools and functionality available from Unity’s core programming to help you on your way.
Now that you’ve gotten a handle on Unity Hub, go ahead and click “NEW”. We’ll have a look at the Unity Editor in my next article.