Unity 6 Preview Available with New XR Experiences

The latest features include mixed reality, hand and eye input, and improved visual fidelity

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Published: May 3, 2024

James Stephen

Unity 6 Preview is now available and includes new XR features like mixed, hand and eye input, and enhanced visual fidelity.

The game and interactive experience creation engine, Unity 6, reportedly supports most popular XR platforms, such as ARKit, ARCore, Meta Quest, visionOS, Windows Mixed Reality, Playstation VR, and more.

Unity 6 was first announced at Unite 2023, an annual conference for game developers, in which reams of new features for Unity 6 were introduced by Unity’s Chief Executive, Jim Whitehurst, who took over from John Riccitiello following a row over pricing structure.

In a blog post by Unity, it explains how Unity 6 can ‘bring the physical world into your game’ by supporting augmented reality (AR) integrations:

“Whether you want to expand your existing game with mixed reality or you’re making something entirely new, AR Foundation helps you incorporate the physical world into players’ experience in a cross-platform way.

“In Unity 6 Preview, we’ve added support for image stabilisation on ARCore, as well as improved support for mixed reality platforms like Meta Quest, including features like meshing and bounding boxes.”

Latest XR Updates

Unity 6 has made major improvements to its XR Toolkit 3.0 (XRI) to include a new interactor the ‘Near-Far Interactor’, allowing for more flexibility and modularity when it comes to programming the interactor behaviours.

New Input Readers will also refine the way inputs are handled in XRI, streamlining the process and simplifying coding across various input types.

Finally, a new virtual keyboard sample will be available, allowing users to create their own in-game keyboards in a cross-platform approach.

According to Unity, more platforms are now supporting  the use of hands to interact with content.

Its XR Hands package allows you to incorporate custom hand gestures, including thumbs up, thumbs down, pointing, plus common OpenXR hand gestures.

Tools are also available to help create, fine-tune, and debug hand shapes and gestures to make content more accessible to the most amount of people.

The visual fidelity of games can be enhanced by using the Composition Layers feature, which is available as an experimental package.

Composition Layers renders text, UI, video, and images at a greater quality through native support for the runtime’s composition layers. This allows for sharper outlines, clearer text, and an improved appearance with greatly reduced artifacts.

Key Benefits of Unity 6

Unity’s website outlines some of the key benefits of Unity 6, including boosting rendering performance to help users render larger and more complex worlds with GPU Resident Drawer and Render Graph. Spatial Temporal Post-Processing (STP) lets you upscale your lower-resolution frames without losing fidelity.

Lighting workflows can be enhanced with scenario blending, sky occlusion, stable lightmap, probe baking, and more.

Simplify multiplayer creation using end-to-end solution to connect players and quick-start your multiplayer game creation. Multiplayer Play mode enable you to test your game, the Multiplayer Center recommends services and tools, and Game Server Hosting and Relay can help to streamline testing, development, and deployment.

Further benefits of Unity 6 are expanding multiplatform reach with web run times,

dynamic AI experiences with its Unity Senti neural engine, and upgraded productivity tools and features for greater productivity and functionality.

In November last year, Unity began its Unity for Humanity campaign to promote the development of creatives using the company’s world-leading technologies.

 

 

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