Is it worth learning when Unity when everything is outdated?

Guys, I’m dealing with paralysis by analysis. I need a push to make sense of the direction I’m heading.

Is it worth learning Unity when features keep getting deprecated so frequently?

Not only that, I’m getting the consensus that each unity update comes with it a feeling of doom and gloom of breaking everything.

Would anything I put hours into learning still be available a year from now? Or everything gets deprecated and replaced with new stuff?

When is unity going to be stable enough to just improve existing features instead of replacing with new features?

This is the biggest reason I’m stuck learning Unity. Each time I start learning, realities of my life calls, I pause to tend to it, when I come back everything I learned seem to be deprecated. Tutorial projects broken, errors everywhere, the works.

I’m stuck starting, pausing, restarting my journey for the last 5 years without making any real progress. Never progressing enough to the point I can make a playable game.

Should I just hop on to another engine? How are you staying motivated to stick to an engine that keeps breaking everything on each update?

It all depends on what are your goals. Why do you even want to learn Unity/GameDev? If its a hobby (and I guess it is) than forcing yourself into doing that is probably not the best thing to do, as with hobby you will always find time limited. So what you want is fun - you need to find fun in what you are doing.

I am on simmilar position - I tried to hit Unity several times, and am getting a little deeper every time. But after a year of break you think you forgot all of it. Its not true - some things stay, even if you dont realise this at the beginning. While it is true, that only constant practice can make you master, its not the only way for the hobbyst. But keeping motivated is hard for someone, who has no real goal (like deadline), so there are some ways of self-motivation. I am not going to write too much about it now, but what I found very interesting is rule of “no zero days”, which means you cannot have a single day while you dont touch your project (or learning materials). You just need to do anything related - be it programming, following tutorial, reading article about Quaternions or maybe designing a part of level or mechanics on a piece of paper if you cannot access your computer.

I personally am not sure what do you mean with features getting deprecated. Its true, that sometimes things go south when you try to open old project on new version. But you can open it with old version of Unity and it should work just fine. Another thing is that you see some new feature and think “Heey, I wish I had that for my game, but damn, it wasn’t here where I started”! So you try to update and everything fails. Dont. You dont need new features on beginner level. I know how it feels. I do. But just forget about it. Go with what you have.
Breaking updates are common in a lot of places now. I had some experience with Oculus Quest for Unity, and that was terrible. Oculus update did break my project twice during 6 months.

Modern Unity looks a little bit lost with plethora of strange paths to take (for example rendering pipelines - how many are now available? 5? Or the new vs Old Input systems), but I think you might have got a little too much of Unity forums or Reddit, where they sometimes complain just a bit too much. I personally don’t like that approach either. But hey… On my level I dont really need that. Stick with one rendering pipeline (I chose URP) and dont care about anythig else. If it gets deprecated and entirely removed in Unity 2024? Who cares honestly? There is going to be something very simmilar, and with small project you and I are able to make as solo-devs its not such a big deal.

Remember to think small. Small games. Not mini-games. Micro games. Find a simple idea for your game. Than reduce it. Than reduce it again to single mechanics. Than simplify it and you will have your first game done and closed. And this step will take you closer to another project. And it will be rewarding if you manage to complete something, even small.

For example like 2 weeks ago I did a little shader in ShaderGraph, that simulates wind on my low-poly trees I made in Blender. Is it optimal shader? I highly doubt it… Is it something really difficult? Its not. Will I ever use it in game? Maybe… Maybe not. Was I happy, that I was able to overcome this issue? Hell yeah. Did I learn something during the process? For sure.

Learning Unity or Game Dev is a process, sometimes harder and tedious, sometimes easier and more rewarding. Remember, that learning something new is always worth it, no matter what it is. Things that you can learn with Unity will apply to other game engines too! Among others there are design patterns, programming patterns, game design skills and knowledge that is exactly the same between all game engines and sometimes even board games. It might seem that nothing overlaps, but its only at early beginner stages. Obviously practice with particular engine will make you better, faster etc in it.

What I can agree, Unreal looks more stable now and maybe even more promising for the future. But for single-indie devs it still might be too much. If you really feel disgusted with Unity, try something else, it wont hurt for sure. I personally dont think its the solution, but well… I can be wrong. Maybe it will click for you with Unreal?

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That’s programming in general.

If you’re not the kind of person who cannot deal with change, you might find that programming isn’t for you. It’s going to continually happen.

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It’s not that. It’s not about the programming side but the engine features like the animation system, etc.

I have been following Godot’s progress, and it’s looking promising. The community doesn’t sound elitist, and features seem to be improved and not replaced. There are still shader latency, physics, and graphic optimization improvements needed to get it up to speed. However, generally, it doesn’t seem as corporate, lifeless, and mechanical as Unity and its community.

I’m tempted to jump ship. but Unity is the industry standard. As a freelancer, I want to be able to monetize any new skill I learn. If I switch to Godot, it’ll solely be for hobby and indie game dev. That’s why I’m looking to others for advice if Unity is worth sticking with.

Hi
Based on my own experience it has been worth learning Unity.
For me, learning Unity is a hobby, and my goals are:
• Learn stuff
• Have fun
• Make and share, some small, simple games.
I’ve been using Unity for about three years now, and have tried maybe about five different versions. I’ve not come across any major issues upgrading between versions. However I can easily imagine that if I was using unity professionally, and working on large projects then it would be a different story.
In my day job I’m developer for a large corporation where I work on business systems. There any upgrade to a system does come with a feeling trepidation about breaking things, which is why every upgrade is accompanied by a major testing program. That does appear to be a fact of life in IT. As far as I can tell Unity is no worse in that regard than anything else I’ve worked on. Although I’ve not tried any other game engines, so I can’t comment on what they are like.
It’s a similar story the new features Unity adds. I learn about the ones I’m interested in, and accept that I won’t know everything. If Unity didn’t add new features, then I think there’d be lots of complaints about them not developing the product and it being stuck in the past.
I hope this helps you a little.

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I understood what you meant.

The issues you’re having is common in virtually all forms of programming. The only times it isn’t is when it’s a dead language/framework/engine. When things stop changing, it’s already dead. There’s always a race to do more with less. As others design new and better ways, competitors steal those ideas.

If you can’t live with a constantly changing environment, don’t program… at least not in a language/framework that’s good.

Look, do what you think is best. I’m just saying, embrace change or you’re going to be unhappy if you stay programming/gamesdev in anything that’s current or relevent.

Of course, I don’t plan on making AAA games. As long as games don’t completely break every time with recent updates I’m fine with it. However, going by consensus of users from reddit and YouTube, it’s painting a grim picture. So, I’m trying to find motivation.

Sure? I don’t think you did.

It’s irksome you keep going on about programming when I already made it clear it’s not programming that’s the issue. In fact, I come from a programming background.

I’m talking about engine features such as animation systems, render pipeline, physics, and the like, not programming.

I’m sure you think you are probably coming off affable, but nothing can be further from it. You come off as elitist and I even hinted it in my last reply, but you doubled down.

If you can’t live with a constantly changing environment, don’t programat least not in a language/framework that’s good.

Ignoring the concern and blindly saying to the effect, “You are the problem.” is not the way to go about this. Why go out of your way to do that? This misguided elitist attitude of the community is exactly what’s turning me away from it.

I’ve made many websites in JS & React, and stuff I made years back still works on an updated environment. JS and React are by no means dead language/framework.

I may be new to C# and Unity libraries as I only made game prototypes in Game Maker back when it was open-source, but I’m not new to programming.

This is not a programming concern.

I’ll re-iterate my concern, but please don’t bother replying if you are just going to double down yet again.

I get the consensus from Reddit and YouTube that whole systems keep getting replaced instead of updated every year and we would have to go in and essentially re-make the game. My only experience with such is tutorial that was working well where I left off completely broken the following year when I decide to pick up Unity again. So, on the surface, as someone who is still learning, the sentiments ring true.

Moreover, the Unity tutorials by gamedev.tv themselves, a lot of reviews keep saying it’s outdated and none of it works anymore.

So, I’m looking for clarity if this is actually true and how to stay motivated if I have to keep re-making the game every year.

I can’t help with your decision. I jumped ships before the pandemic, from Unity to Unreal. I had always hated the Unity shaders and the light system, and Unreal is way better from my point of view. I have never regret doing that.

What I am trying to say is, if you aren’t comfortable in Unity (for x or y reason), I would try another game-engine (be Godot, Unreal or any other). I can say that Unreal has changed a lot in the last updated, but I have found it easier to work with the new features. I really don’t know Godot, so I can’t say anything about that.

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Mate, you need a reality check and a thicker skin.

Are you doubling down again? Don’t be like that. :sweat_smile:

You are still unwilling to admit (to yourself) none of your replies address anything to my concern regarding Unity nor anything I’m dealing with. It’s just general cookie-cutter elitist babble I seen time and time again that added zero value to the post except to stroke your ego even if you were not consciously aware that’s what was happening.

You posted stuff unrelated to the concern and I called you out only because you doubled down after saying you got what I meant when you clearly didn’t. Simple as that. Out of the four people, I only had to call you out, none of the others. That says more about you than me because I had zero issue with other’s responses. They actually read the post and didn’t resort to dishing out general “wisdom” nor taken an elitist stance suggesting I don’t try to program in good language/frameworks.

If you want, you are welcome to actually address the concern I pointed out multiple times.

This was my concern, nothing else:

I get the consensus from Reddit and YouTube that whole systems keep getting replaced instead of updated every year and we would have to go in and essentially re-make the game. My only experience with such is tutorial that was working well where I left off completely broken the following year when I decide to pick up Unity again. So, on the surface, as someone who is still learning, the sentiments ring true. So, I’m looking for clarity if this is actually true and how to stay motivated if I have to keep re-making the game every year.

This came up on my checks and rather than delete some posts i thought it would be better to leave this thread as is and address some of the points and issues raised here.

Firstly being confrontational even if your point is valid is not a good way to get your point across and often comes across as condescending and even insulting in some respects. We dont approve of that sort of reply as it is often unhelpful to the student asking the question.

Equally replying to such comments with hostility and confrontation is also just as unhelpful not only to yourselves but also to the community in general.

To address the original question and the points made here…

Updates and changes are the nature of the beast when coding with an engine.
It does not matter the engine you use it will happen eventually and in phases to every single engine that you try.
I’ve used Unity, Unreal, Godot, Construct and seen gamemaker and playmaker all of which have had major changes an updates and regularly bug fix things.

So with this in mind, What do we do about?
Well the answer very much depends on what you are currently doing…

  1. Following a course
    Use the version that the course is using, You are still learning and you dont need to be bogged down by bugs that are not of your own making.
    Our courses we tend to use the most up to date version to keep our courses as current for longer at the time of recording. Usually before release i have reviewed the content using that version (Or a slightly later version) and bugs are picked up at that stage so you should be relatively okay to use the version that closely matches the one in the course.

  2. Making your own project
    In this case pick a version of the game engine that is a LTS version (Long Term Support) and stick to it.
    Unless there is an absolute need to update to a later version because you need a feature that has been introduced to continue your project then dont update stick with the same version for that entire project.
    This is true for game studios and their process as well.
    (Think Kerbal Space Program as they didnt update until the physics got changed in later versions of unity)

As a side note i will highlight your point on reviews stating that courses are out of date and no longer works although we do state in the courses to use the version that we do and the coding that is taught will still apply.
I believe we are working on a document/have a document on converting to the new input systems being added to courses.
One of the other issues is that Unity decided not to support Visual Studio Code but i believe that is not an issue until you hit 2022 and above.
There is still a way to use it but its a bit of a pain in the backside and i am working with the production manager to get the installation video adjusted so that it includes the process to keep it working.

I’ve highlighted your mention of the reviews on courses to our team to look into.

I hope this helps with answering your initial question.

Marc Carlyon
GameDev.tv Support Leader

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Started learning unity in 2020, having stopped developing for a period of time due to real life constraints - I cant say that what I learned in 2020 no longer works. Sure, there are new features, and sometimes new ways of doing things, or things have changed slightly - but the majority is basically the same.

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This was the issue. Moreover, it was made worse by snide remarks on top of not actually addressing my concern and doubling down. It’s only valid in a general sense even ignoring the snide remarks.

I’m from a programming background. Of course, I’m not a senior-level programmer even though I have senior-level experience, programming is a borrowed skill for me, but I know enough to know technologies change, and it’s part of the game. JavsScript and React are one of the fastest evolving languages and apps I made a few years back still work on an updated environment. It’s not a dead language/framework just because nothing breaks constantly. It means it’s grown enough that nothing has to break constantly on updates.

I was asking about the Unity Ecosystem in specific and to help (from people actually using Unity) to dissipate fearmongering pessimism from social media before I dedicate the next several months of my life on Unity.

I’m at a stage where I’m deciding between Unity and Godot (Godot 4 got released recently). I would’ve gone for Godot without asking but I already bought GameDev.tv Unity courses so was wondering if it’s really “that bad,” as people in social media were suggesting.

So, I needed to know about unity ecosystem, from people actually using Unity, and general stuff like “programming constantly changes” wouldn’t help me as a student to decide if I should dedicate my time to Unity or not as it’s irrelevant to the concern raised.

Yes, agree, but I only called them out on it because they doubled down and added I shouldn’t program in a good language/framework. Granted, I should’ve just flagged it instead of calling them out on it. My apologies.

Yes. I got input from others that clarifies Unity updates are not as bad as social media makes it out to be. I’ll follow your advice and use the same version as the tutorial for learning.

Yes. I got input from others that clarifies Unity updates are not as bad as social media makes it out to be. I’ll follow your advice and use the same version as the tutorial for learning.

I am currently going through some courses with the course using an older version of the engine… 2019 (iirc) not entirely sure, but I have managed to follow no issues on the 2022 tech version. So its not REALLY needed, but if you are completely new to unity, then going with the same version as the course would be beneficial.

I’ve not done unity for a while as i have been reviewing content in the art courses for the better part of 6 months whilst coding got prototyped.
I’m back reviewing an upcoming unity course at the moment thats just got to our lifetime members and so far only a couple of major things have come up that have slowed me down in using 2022.2.10

  1. Visual Studio Code and Omnisharp (Autocomplete) use older versions of .net and unity are stopping support for these versions and they are not likely to catch up.
    This creates issues with not only getting unity to work with VS Code but also the autocomplete and even the fix i have found has to be applied each time you open unity.
    Its not perfect but it works and i hope it will be added to the course videos.
    For information purposes the solution i found is below

  2. Ensure you install the 4.7.1 developer pack if you dont install microsoft visual studio.

  3. Ensure you have both Visual Studio Editor AND Visual Studio Code Editor in the unity registry package manager installed

  4. Set Visual Studio Code in the External Editor each time you open Unity (If its not there reinstall the packages)

  5. Check the workspace is set to the project name.sln using Control Shift + P then select Omnisharp and select the projectname.sln

Some parts of this may only be an issue if you did not install the microsoft visual studio community when you installed unity but for the most part 2-4 will probably be the case.

  1. The Input System
    Now you can still use the older input system it does work but the newer input system reminds me more of the unreal system in that you create an asset to hold or your binded controls, you create a C# class that does all the behind the scenes stuff so you can access it in your PlayerController script.
    Making this in a new course is not too bad however converting it is no mean feat (There are you tube video on it and in parts i believe its something around 5 hours? Don’t quote me on that!)

Other than that minor things crop up like the animation window by default doesnt display the sample rate of the animation and its in seconds rather than frames of the timeline, Things like these are fairly easy to solve by looking in three dot menu or a quick question to our TA’s or if you feel lucky a google search :wink:

Its always best when learning to use the course version as previously mentioned :slight_smile:

Hope this helps and if you do get stuck dont be worried about reaching out in the ASK sections assigned to the lecture as we have teaching assistants assigned to everyone course (If its a newer course it may even be me :wink: )

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