Game development is one of the biggest industries right now. With hundreds of games being developed every year from big AAA title to amazing indie games, it is a good time to become a game developer and explore your career in the field.
So you have decided to become a game developer and are confused on which game engine to get started with? Don’t worry as we will cover two major players in the game engine market; Unity and Unreal. We will also cover the comparison of Unity Vs. Unreal from the perspective of game developers who are looking to pick the best game engine for their next game.
Unity vs. Unreal
When it comes to choosing a game engine for game development, there are multiple factors that may affect your decision making. Both game engines are great but there is a different perspective that we need to look into, and everyone will say a different thing when it comes to making a choice.
For example, shieldgenerator7 from the US is currently working on Building Pacman in Unity C#. The project is part of our new “Premium Projects,” and hence it is completely structured and easy to follow.
What do you want to create?
The choice of game engine heavily depends on your project. Many questions need to be answered before you finally choose one game engine. For example, do you want to create a 2D or 3D game? Or you are trying to create those amazing 2.5D games?
Another important question that needs to be addressed is; for which platform are you creating your game? Mobile, console or multi-platform? You also need to look at the potential of the game on the said market that you are targeting.
Once you have figured out answers to the above questions, then you are ready to choose your game engine.
Choose Unity if you are creating a 2D game or developing the game for the mobile platform.
Select Unreal if you are interested in creating a 3D game with graphics as a priority. Unreal is also an excellent choice for creating games for other platforms such as Windows, Console, etc. It should be noted that both game engines are equally capable of developing games at any level. However, one performs better than other when it comes to certain scenarios. For example, Unity is a great choice for developing 2D mobile games as it comes with all the tools that are required to develop and deploy the game successfully.
Community plays a major role in the success of a game engine. Without an active community, it becomes harder for developers to get help when needed. An active community also means progressive improvement in the game engine as there are more chances of bugs reported. Also, bigger community means that new feature sets are requested more and implemented often.
Check out, “How to create Flappy Bird in Unity3D using C#” by RedIronLabs. He is using Unity3D to create the game. Moreover, if you are interested in learning more, you can check out the next course in the series, “How to create a Multiplayer Space Game in C#” using Unity 3D.
Unity has a larger community compared to Unreal. This can mean a lot of things for someone who is interested in picking up a new game engine. If you are using Unity and get stuck during development, you are just one Google query away from finding the solution. The same is not true when it comes to using the Unreal game engine. The community is big, but you may find yourself in scenarios where you have not found anything on Google related to your problem. In that case, you need to troubleshoot all by yourself and find a solution. If you are confident in your skills, then Unreal can be a good choice. However, if you are learning game development for the first time, then it is advisable to choose Unity instead of Unreal.
Ease of Use
When it comes to ease of use, it is better to go with Unity game engine. Unity offers better and intuitive interface to follow and learn from. It also provides better learning material and can be learned faster compared to the Unreal. Unreal, on the other hand, has a sophisticated interface and doesn’t facilitate ease of use.
Ease of use heavily depends on the experience of the individual. If you are not sure which one to choose, it is better to try both of them and decide according to your experience.
If you are serious about publishing games, then you need to look at the prices too. For learners, pricing can be easily ignored as they can try out the free version of the game engines. Unity offers an entirely free version, which can let you experiment to your heart’s content. But it gets costly as you pick up the PRO version. PRO version starts from $125/month for professional. Serious developers can also benefit from the PLUS version, which is available for only $35/month. If you are thinking of buying the full license for the Unity, you are out of luck as they have stopped one-time license purchases. To know more, check their pricing page.
Unreal engine is also available for free. However, if you start earning, you need to pay 5% royalty to Unreal. That’s a unique way to approach the market and it enables young developers to work at their best as nothing is locked in the free version. Yup, you get everything, including regular updates, sample projects, source code, etc.
If you are learning game development and you don’t have money to spare, then the Unreal engine can be your best choice. However, if you want to look at overall learning experience, Unity can be a better option at $35/month.
Read more (LiveEdu Unity tutorial): Starting with Unity Game Engine for Beginners
BluePrint Vs. Unity Scripting
When it comes to working with the game engines, one thing is common among all of them, i.e., scripting. Both game engines (Unity and Unreal) offer useful scripting features. If you have to choose one, then it would be Unreal, thanks to its own Blueprint visual scripting. The scripting is node-based and it is very easy to use. It enables developers to create prototypes quickly. The power of BluePrint technique can also be understood by the fact that developers can create full games with the only Blueprint.
Unity, in comparison, offers good Unity C# (Visual Scripting), which is a good alternative but not close to the Unreal Blueprint.
Graphics play a crucial role in the success of a game. With powerful gaming machines becoming more mainstream, developers can take advantage of the powerful game engines.
If you are looking for pure graphics capabilities, Unreal is the king. It is a next-gen game engine that offers advanced graphics capabilities, such as complex partition system and dynamic lighting. Unity 5 is capable of producing graphics heavy environments. You can check a good comparison article by not-lonely.com where he shows a side-by-side comparison of Unity vs. Unreal.
Unity vs. Unreal – which one are you going to choose? If you take all the points into consideration, both are a good choice.
Choosing one game engine depends a lot on your project and the purpose for which you are picking up the game engine. For example, if you are a learner, you can easily get started with Unity and learn most of the basic stuff before buying the cheap monthly subscription. There are plenty of Unity learning materials that you can follow. The best way to get started is to check the Unity learn page.
Unreal is an excellent choice too. If you have a team of experienced developers and want to reduce development time drastically, then don’t look at anything other than the Unreal game engine. Personal choice and subjective view also play a crucial role in choosing a game engine. So, don’t shy away from making a decision contrary to popular belief. In the end, it is always better to pick up a game engine for long-term use.
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