Unity Collaborate Beta – What You Need To Know

kristielAll Topics, Game Design & Development Tools, Tutorial, Unity Game Development

Unity-Collaborate-Blog

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Almost a year ago, I wrote a blog post about setting up Unity to work with GitHub. After Unity got rid of their built-in Asset Server for version control, developers have had to turn to Git or SVN for their version control needs. However, Unity is adding another version control tool to your arsenal; Unity Collaborate.

What is Unity Collaborate?

Collaborate is basically a built-in version control system that utilizes Git. With Unity Collaborate, all the version control tools you need are accessible from within the Unity Editor. Collaborate keeps track of every change you make within Unity and allows you to push those changes. Likewise, you can pull changes your other team members have made to the project. Merge conflicts are monitored. Plus, Collaborate has tools to sort the merge conflicts and easily choose between the changes to keep and to discard.

How Do I Use Collaborate?

Collaborate is currently in closed beta. You can sign up by going to this page and clicking the “Sign Up” link. You need to have a Unity account to sign in with. Fill out the information and submit your application. My acceptance came within 2 days of submitting my application. Once you get approved, you will have to download the current Beta of Unity.

Instructions to Create a New Project with Collaborate:

  • First of all, install the Unity Beta
  • Open the Unity Beta
  • Create a new project like you normally would
  • When the project opens, you’ll notice a “Services” list in your inspector area like so:

Test Unity Collaborate

  • Click the “Collaborate” section and you’ll be brought to a Collaborate Service Window. Choose to turn Collaborate On:

Unity Collaborate Configuration

  • This enables Collaborate on your project. Notice near the top-right of the Unity Editor that there is a “Collab” toolbar with an arrow on it. This arrow indicates that you have changes to push to the cloud. Click on the “Collab” toolbar and you’ll see something like this:

Unity Collaborate project

At this point, if I create a new file, you’ll notice the icon for the new file has a + icon on it, like this:

Unity Collaborate + icon

 

 

 

The + icon indicates that this file is new and will be included in the next push you do.
If you make changes to a file after it’s been pushed to a cloud, you’ll see a different icon, like this:

Unity Collaborate Cloud icon

 

 

 

Conclusion

That’s about all there is to Unity Collaborate. In my experience, it’s much simpler to use compared to Git or SVN on their own. It may not be a good solution for everybody, but it’s another tool that’s available if you need it. The project I’m working on contains a large number of assets purchased from the asset store. Something to be aware of – the cloud informed me that I could only upload 5,000 files per commit. You can add additional files, but you need to do so in another commit.

Seems like as far as the beta goes, those accepted get 15 GB of space on the cloud for the beta. After the beta ends, users who participated in the beta will be allowed to keep the 15 GB of space at no extra cost. Although it isn’t clear how Unity will be implementing the full release of Collaborate, it sounds like it will cost money to utilize. However, Unity has not delivered specifics on the pricing for Collaborate. Most of all, it’s worth taking advantage of now for the free 15 GB and the incredibly user-friendly, version-control solution.

If you are looking for the Unity Professional edition, education discounts are available for students and faculty at Studica. Post-secondary schools can take advantage of a variety of Unity Education Suites and Bundles.

Blogger: Mark Philipp, Application Engineer at Studica

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