Search Unity

  1. Improved Prefab workflow (includes Nested Prefabs!), 2D isometric Tilemap and more! Get the 2018.3 Beta now.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. The Unity Pro & Visual Studio Professional Bundle gives you the tools you need to develop faster & collaborate more efficiently. Learn more.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Let us know a bit about your interests, and if you'd like to become more directly involved. Take our survey!
    Dismiss Notice
  4. Improve your Unity skills with a certified instructor in a private, interactive classroom. Watch the overview now.
    Dismiss Notice
  5. Want to see the most recent patch releases? Take a peek at the patch release page.
    Dismiss Notice

Best way for a 2D Unity user to learn Unity 3D concepts?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by appymedia, Oct 11, 2018 at 10:58 AM.

  1. appymedia

    appymedia

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    Posts:
    19
    Hi All,

    I have been playing with Unity in 2D which feels mostly fine now. I'm happy setting up 2D projects, 2D assets, working with components, C# scripting, scenes, creating builds for desktop, mobile and the editor in general. I have a coding background which helped a lot to be honest, no expert but I used C# some years ago so it made life a lot easier.

    I'd like to take that up a gear and start doing some 3D work now. Its an area I have 0 experience with though (as in 3D). Are there any paid or unpaid learning resources that will help me in that respect? I don't mind if they take you zero etc and explain some parts of Unity I already know and so on.

    What I'm after is something that takes me through properly what a material is, shaders, lighting, using the editor to lay things out in 3D, animations etc and any workflows that fit in with the concepts.

    For example I installed ProBuilder to play with and already I'm hitting things I don't really have a clue about like UV mapping, lighting and baking lighting and so on. I want to understand those concepts instead of making a hash of stuff which I feel I will if I carry on.

    I see the 'official' learning resources here...

    https://unity3d.com/learn/tutorials

    ...which look pretty good to be honest, what about the paid stuff here...

    https://unity3d.com/swordsandshovels

    ...anybody have any opinions on that for what I'm trying to learn? Lots of very piecemeal (but good info) bits out there on the web as well. Just be nice to have something with a consistent flow. Any suggestions welcome.

    Look forward to any info or help anyone has.

    Many thanks.
     
  2. BoogieD

    BoogieD

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Posts:
    178
    For a lack of a better description, shaders are how Unity renders the textures. They may need to be different for different device capabilities, surface details and/or performance. Some are very efficient but flat looking and others have specular, bump and transparency mapping etc. which obviously takes more processing. You can create your own custom shaders too.

    Baked lighting is when you pre 'bake' the lighting and shadows into the terrain artwork and static objects rather than having Unity do it dynamically at run time. Set stationary objects as 'static' so they will be included in the baking. It takes a long time to process and most people hate waiting for it to finish.

    UV mapping is how 2D texture artwork is mapped to the tris of the object meshes. Some call it 'wrapping'. Every mesh has a UV array that has the texture coordinates U and V for each 3D vertice in the mesh (X and Y are already used to refer to the 3D vertices). This is how each horizontal line is drawn within the tri face from the 2D texture artwork.

    Surface normals is an array of vectors, each or several from every 3D vertice so the lighting system knows which way the surface is facing for efficient lighting rendering. They can be shared by the tris so the edges render smooth (one for each vertice) or non shared so they can render faceted (a larger array with a separate vector for each tri corner).
    You don't need to bother with these mesh arrays unless creating your own meshes with code or modifying already made ones etc.
    Look up Unity's 'Mesh' object in the online reference.

    There are tons of YouTube tutorials and online references and $15 video courses at Udemy etc. Go Google!
    There is so much to learn but you can't swim unless you jump in the water first. Making a hash of some things is just a part of the learning curve.
    Core code and game mechanics are mainly what I'm doing at the moment. I have some OK lighting and shaders for now but not going to fuss with them until the final stages. I hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018 at 6:57 PM
    Cucci_A and appymedia like this.
  3. appymedia

    appymedia

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    Posts:
    19
    Many thanks for the reply @BoogieD and detailing out of the concepts I tripped on, really enjoying learning about 3D game dev.

    An yes, I've been googling around, watching some Brackeys stuff on lighting and things like that, very good indeed. I'm sure with enough time I can start to piece together concepts of 3D and the workflows etc with just YouTube vids alone but I was hoping there might be a nice course or something that does that it in a structured way.

    I did pick up a uDemy course a while ago for Unity when I was learning it right from scratch but found it a little missing of real solid foundation info at times. Lots of projects like shooters and platformers though which is great to be honest and still great value IMO.

    I've ended up trying out the PluralSight official unity stuff as its got a pretty comprehensive fundamentals track. Hoping that will set me up to start to do other things.

    Nice to hear about your approach on dev as well and your right, need to jump in and learn by doing, just a little happier doing that with a good source of info to help, as well as quite frankly a huge (and helpful) community.

    Thanks again for you time, appreciated.
     
  4. BoogieD

    BoogieD

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Posts:
    178
    The problem is that an extensive course covering everything in Unity, you will probably grow a long grey beard before finishing it. LOL I find too much info at once can be overwhelming on the grey matter and my head may explode. Focus on each subject separately in due course for a more thorough understanding. When I get bored doing the same after much time I welcome a new aspect to study or master and hack out some basic code for a quicker start later when it's the thing to be done. :)
     
    appymedia likes this.
  5. appymedia

    appymedia

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    Posts:
    19
    Good advice indeed and I agree, I'm only looking to complete the fundamental track of the PluralSight course for now (21 hours, something I can cover off across a week).

    At the same time I'm just jumping in and doing stuff as well. As I run into the million other things I'll need to learn I'll pick them off at the time I need them. That's the plan anyway ;)

    An yes, I know what you mean about the head exploding, Unity is a hole that just gets deeper and deeper the more you look hahah Thanks again for your replies, nice to hear others views and advice on this.
     
  6. appymedia

    appymedia

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    Posts:
    19
    Just finished a first round of videos that whirlwind you through some Unity basics and the 3D export and import process.

    The Unity UI I was fine with, project management etc was all good, scene stuff was actually really useful but HOLY cow guys, seeing Maya and 3DS Max with a real production model in and seeing how its exported and so on made me realise this is a whole new level. Happy just playing with boxes and spheres for now! :)

    Will go through some material and lighting stuff tomorrow as I'm reaching learning meltdown level for today. Need to actually get into Unity and start playing now, got a simple idea to start with.

    I wanted to leave this here in case any other 3D n00bs drop in and are feeling veerrrryyyyyyyy small, your not alone :)