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Cinematic Studio Studio - Feedback

Discussion in 'Virtual Production' started by newguy123, Sep 19, 2021.

  1. newguy123

    newguy123

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    Hi Guys

    Thanks for this, which looks like a brilliant step in the right direction. I'd love to give it a go. However, whoever deciced it's only for 2020.3.....honestly?!?

    Typically we work with "cutting edge" and need featues and performance only available in newer versions. So we've moved on from 2020.3. We're on 2021.2 beta. No point in trying it if we have to move back to 202.3 and loose all the workflow we worked hard and painstakinly on to finally get a grip on for our purposes.

    Feels like this project will be another BOTD. Nice idea, but since it only works on *"old" versions, there's really no point for us to try it in our humble opinion.

    * I know 2020.3 is current LTS, but for purposes if this conversation and also for our workflow, 2020.3 is ancient

    * Apoligies for my tone in this thread, it's just that I'm very frustrated with Unity. It very much feels like just when we're getting somewhere, we're 1 step forward, 2 steps back.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2021
    marief_unity likes this.
  2. akent99

    akent99

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    Since Cinematic Studio (as I understand it) is just a collection of version of packages that work together (there is no new code in it), I assume your issue is it is using older versions of Timeline etc? (Timeline 1.61, Sequences 1.0.0-pre6, FBX Exporter 4.1.0-pre.2, Alembic 2.2.0, Cinemachine 2.8.0-pre.1, and Recorder 3.0.0.) I am using Cinematic Studio is Unity 2021.2.0b5 personally (without issue). I just decided to stick with their combo of packages that I assume are tested to work together.

    My issue is it means I cannot pick up bug fixes for any of those packages without basically giving up on Cinematic Studio. (They don't release new versions of Cinematic Studio when there are new versions of things it depends on.) It is more of a model of a "stable" (tested?) combo of things (without bug fixes). You can of course upgrade the packages individually yourself, but then why bother using Cinematic Studio?

    E.g. Package manager says Timeline 1.6.2 is recommended, Sequences 1.0.2 is released, FBX Exporter 4.1.1 is released, Alembic 2.2.2 is recommended, Cinemachine 2.8.0 is released, and Recorder 3.0.1 is released. Everything has newer releases (not pre-release), but because I decided to go with Cinematic Studio, I am stuck on older versions (pre-release versions in many cases).

    Note I went with several other "features" as well (Gameplay and Storytelling, 3D Characters and Animation). They have overlapping sets of packages to include. I assume they all need updating at the same time or else you will having conflicting sets of version numbers.

    Not sure if it the same problem as what you are having, but wanted to share that I am using it in 2021.2.beta, but I am not sure I am doing the right thing as a result (because I don't get bug fixes). I just did it on the hope that they test the combination of packages, and I am always scared of updating *some* packages and discovering new conflicts or bugs.
     
  3. newguy123

    newguy123

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    Ah thanks for your insight!

    I did not realise its only a "collection" of existing packages. I was under the impressions its a completely new set of tools together with a project that was custom tweaked, and therefore it only works on 2020.3. I did not atually try it, as I mentioned and I just saw "only works on 2020.3" and that gave me flashback to Book of the Dead
     
  4. akent99

    akent99

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    There was a demo project as well, had some sample files etc in it - maybe that required a newer version. But the thing in the package manager with that name is just a list of packages. I quite like the concept, but not being updated reduces the value a lot. Maybe they are waiting for the 2021.2 final release...
     
    newguy123 likes this.
  5. newguy123

    newguy123

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    Yes exactly. Well said.
     
  6. markvi

    markvi

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    Hi newguy123,

    Thanks for your feedback! All of the packages used by the Cinematic Studio sample are officially released, tested and supported in 2021.2, so you can just go to Package Manager and install the Cinematic Studio feature set (which automatically includes Recorder, Sequences, Alembic, FBX Exporter and Cinemachine).

    When we released the Cinematic Studio Sample in July, 2021.2 was still very much a moving target. In our experience (most of us have a film/tv/animation background), studios making linear content are pretty conservative about using new software, so we chose to test with the most stable version of Unity available: the most recent LTS release.

    We're working on getting the sample officially supported in 2021.2. Keep an eye on this forum, we'll post here when it's available. Until then, we recommend opening the sample in 2020.3 on Windows. That's the platform we tested on, so we're confident it runs well.

    Out of curiosity, what are the features that drove you to 2021.2?

    cheers,
    -Mark
     
  7. newguy123

    newguy123

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    Thanks for the info Mark

    And to answer your question about what drove us to 2021.2:
    Mainly the robustness of raytracing and the use of DLSS. I find raytracing is better and better in each version, and for what we do, 2021.2 suits as well.
     
  8. akent99

    akent99

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    I just wanted to check my understanding. I installed the Cinematic Studio feature, which installed all the packages, but old versions of them (see thread above). I assume a new version of the feature needs to be released with updated version numbers?
     
  9. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    I think the complication here is in a new-to-Unity term, Feature Set, which is being introduced to Unity in 2021.2.

    Feature Sets intend to solve a key complaint we hear from users: "there are so many packages! How do I know which one(s) I need to solve my problem?" Each feature set represents a group of features that collectively solves a common user problem. For example, there's a feature set that includes everything most users need to create a 2D game. There's another feature set for character animation. And there's one for creating a cinematic.

    So the "Cinematic Studio feature set" is in 2021.2 and allows you to install exactly the packages you get in the "Cinematic Studio sample" (what's in the Asset Store). The only differences are:
    • The versions of the packages are different (i.e., the Sample includes versions for 2020.3, while the Feature Set includes the correct versions for 2021.2
    • The sample includes the Mich-L sample content (the animation with the T-rex).
     
  10. akent99

    akent99

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    Thanks for the reply, but my question is slightly different. I understand there are the two things. I installed the "feature set" through the package manager.

    upload_2021-9-20_15-16-20.png

    I was confused that there is no version number listed on Cinematic Studio (just "release") in the package manager. I created the following dependency to load it into all projects I load (look for "com.unity.feature.*" - I specify a version number there of 1.0.0 for "cinematic".

    Code (csharp):
    1. {
    2.   "name": "tv.extra-ordinary.unity.common",
    3.   "displayName": "Extra Ordinary Common",
    4.   "version": "0.1.0",
    5.   "unity": "2020.2",
    6.   "description": "EO test1 package",
    7.   "dependencies": {
    8.     "com.unity.feature.cinematic": "1.0.0",
    9.     "com.unity.feature.characters-animation": "1.0.0",
    10.     "com.unity.feature.gameplay-storytelling": "1.0.0",
    11.     "com.unity.test-framework": "1.1.27",
    12.     "com.unity.mathematics": "1.2.1",
    13.     "com.unity.burst": "1.6.0-pre.2",
    14.     "com.unity.collections": "1.0.0-pre.3",
    15.     "com.unity.postprocessing": "3.1.1"
    16.   }
    17. }
    But re-reading, on https://docs.unity.cn/2021.2/Documentation/Manual/fs-details.html I just re-read this: "The label always appears because feature sets are always matched to a specific version of the Editor and contain released packages that are supported for that version."

    Does that mean feature sets pick up the "right" version of the package for the version of the editor I am using? Because I have not updated the beta level (2021.2.0b5) is why it my project has not picked up the latest release levels? Or do I need to wait for 2021.2 to be officially released and then it will update? This is the bit I did not understand. (I am slow to update the beta level in fear of breaking things, so I don't do all beta updates.)
     
  11. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    Yes, exactly.

    I'm not entirely certain how it's meant to behave between sub-versions (b5 vs, say, b11). I'm looking at b11 and I have the actual v1.0.0 of Sequences. I'm guessing that the fact that you're in b5 is indeed the reason why you're seeing 1.0.0-pre.6 (but, er, don't hold me to that).
     
  12. akent99

    akent99

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    I upgraded to b12 and the features seemed to have automatically upgraded to the latest versions. There are also little lock icons next to the packages from the "features". Cool! Will see how it goes.

    (Hit one problem that took me a while to fix. I had copied some files into a SHARED directory, then symlinked it into my project. But the original files were still in one of the projects with the symlink, so it renamed all the GUIDs in the shared symlinked directory, which messed all the other projects up until I worked out what was going on. But it is my hackery with symlinks, so not saying this is a Unity bug. Ultimately I should probably export my own package or similar to share files with other projects. The symlink just made that all automatic.)
     
  13. newguy123

    newguy123

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    So then can I safely upgrade the 2020.3 sample project with the t-rex from asset store to the latest 2021.2.0b12?
     
  14. akent99

    akent99

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    Probably...? I am not going to say "safely" ... been bitten enough times on that one! ;-)

    What I did: I created a new project with 2021.2b12, added the Cinematic Studio Sample (https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/templates/tutorials/cinematic-studio-sample-192852#content) from the Unity asset store (via Package Manager). It warned me about overwriting project settings - I let it do it.

    It looks like it adds specific package versions directly - the Cinematic Studio Sample as far as I can tell does NOT use the "Cinematic Studio" feature. So it is demoing the Sequences etc packages, not the "Cinematic Studio" feature.
     
  15. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    Correct. As I mentioned above, Feature Sets are new to 2021.2 and the Sample was designed for 2020 LTS. Yes, it will all ultimately work in 2021, but we're not validating that yet.

    As for a "safe" upgrade", again, not validating yet. The Sample's main use is to show you how these features can be used. If you're working in 2021.2, I'd recommend looking at the Sample in 2020 LTS and then adding the features via the Feature Set in 2021.2. I recognize that this is less-than-optimal, but there's a lot that's new in this combination (Feature Sets, Sequences, and the Sample itself). It'll take a little bit longer for these things to settle down into an easy-to-use landing pattern.
     
    newguy123 likes this.
  16. newguy123

    newguy123

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    I finally got some time to actually start going through the sample project and following along in Unity Learn...

    WOOOOOW!!!

    This is absolutely awesome stuff guys! Well Done!
     
    marc_tanenbaum likes this.