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Windows Web Player beta

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by David-Helgason, Mar 13, 2006.

  1. David-Helgason

    David-Helgason

    Unity Technologies

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    (Post edited for clarity)

    Also note: there is one further interesting event: there is now a Windows Internet Explorer Web Player plugin!.

    We are very excited about this.

    The Windows web player you can download here:
    www.otee.dk/unity_beta/UnityWebPlayer.exe

    The web player will stay in beta beyond Unity 1.2.2; it'll be relased to coincide with the next big Unity release, expected in beta shortly after 1.2.2.


    Both Unity Pro and Unity Indie can publish Web Players for Windows. However games made with Unity Indie will display a small Unity watermark. Obviously Unity Pro does not do this.

    Auto updating and automatic plugin installation of the Windows Web Plugin has been disabled until we release the final. If you find any bugs, please use Report Bug.app to report them as soon as possible. Always attach the .unityweb file to the bug.

    All web player data files that were built with Unity 1.1 or later can be loaded in the Windows Web Player. However the HTML template created by Unity 1.2.1 or before didn't support the IE plugin. The Unity 1.2.2 beta has the correct template.

    If you simply want to see one of your already published web players work on Windows, you can use the HTML template that's attached to this post (simply replace UNITY_WEB_PATH with the path to the unityweb file.)
     

    Attached Files:

  2. jeremyace

    jeremyace

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    I was under the impression (assumption ), that we would publish our web players as usual and the windows plugin would be able to read and use the .unityweb format. I didn't think it would be a seperate publishing task. Seems to me that this would work much better if this was a universal data format, and the end-user plugins themselves are responsable for platform-specific stuff, the .unityweb file just containing the data.

    I understand cutting off full windows standalone publishing to only the Pro version, but why the watermark on the web? It seems weird to me to allow full Mac web publishing, and just watermarked windows web publishing. It seems to be all in the same. Web is web and it should be as universal as possible. (IMO)

    Another quick question, how small is the watermark? I can't DL the beta, so I can't see for myself right now.

    What version is the windows web player going to be added to as this is just a feature preview? 1.2.3? 1.3? 6.5? ;)

    Thanks guys,
    -Jeremy
     
  3. Aras

    Aras

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    Yes it is the same publishing (just hit "publish for the web"). The only thing is that the old generated HTML template did not include tags required for IE to render the content.
    In other words: you can just take the html template attached, install beta IE plugin on windows and your old web players should Just Work.
     
  4. David-Helgason

    David-Helgason

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    Okay, this could have been explained better :)

    1) Since the .unityweb data format is the same for Mac and Windows, it follows that from now on all Unitys will be able to make Windows web builds.

    2) However, the Windows Plugin will be in beta until the next big release of Unity, which is going into beta soon after 1.2.2. That the Windows Plugin is in beta means that it doesn't autoinstall or autoupdate (because we need to avoid mass distribution of beta-quality software).

    3) Why there isn't a watermark in the Mac web-player? The answer here is that we find it rude to add a watermark where there wasn't one previously (of course, you can make your own watermark if you so wish: it's really simple using a GUITexture).

    I'll edit the original post to clarify it a little...

    d.
     
  5. jeremyace

    jeremyace

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    Great, thanks for the info guys.

    The part I don't understand is why there is a watermark at all. If there is not a watermark on the mac web plugin, why should there magically be one on the windows web plugin? Also when it loads the plugin it displays the Unity loading data splash anyway doesn't it? It isn't that big a deal, it's just a watermark, but it really doesn't make that much sense.

    And also my previous question, what size/style is the watermark going to be?

    All-in-all great work guys, I really didn't think you would have this much done already.

    Thanks guys,
    -Jeremy
     
  6. marty

    marty

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    When will the Mozilla-based (i.e. Firefox) Windows plug-in be ready for testing?
     
  7. antenna-tree

    antenna-tree

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    I'm sure you guys have thought this out a little bit, but this seems a little extreme and almost shooting yourselves in the foot as far as getting the word out about Unity. I myself will not put out a Windows page that has a watermark on it, it compleyely ruins whatever aesthetic I'm going for. Admittedly I haven't seen this watermark yet and it might be very small, but I've never seen one that isn't obnoxious (that's their purpose). If your purpose is to advertise Unity with the Watermark then the "loading" screen seems to be a good place.

    If you have to do this then you might want to consider a new License... "Indie Web Developer" or something and charge us another $100 for the Windows plug-in publisher with no watermark.

    Is your fear that people will use the Windows Web Plug-in to publish full games on CD that just play through the Plug-in? Maybe limit the file size that the Plug-in will allow for the Indie license? I don't know, it's a pickle :wink:
     
  8. marty

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    I've seen tthe watermark already and clearly the Unity folks don't intend for you to publish with it, as it all but obscures part of the lower righthand screen.

    I think they are just trying to give Indie owners a chance to preview the Windows web-player's functionality before the (expensive) upgrade to Pro. Personally, I'm grateful for it. I fully plan to upgrade to Pro, but not until I can see for myself that the Windows web-player works and I've had a chance to play with it a bit. If that's what you're after, the watermark shouldn't get in the way, so to speak.

    While it might seem to be a bit lopsided now to have a watermark on one web-player and not the other, I just read this as a reflection of the fact that all Mac deployment on Unity comes at the Indie price point, as part of the Unity cost model. This model also affords that Unity developers seeking Windows deployment as well pay a higher price, presumably to offset the added R&D costs associated with producing Windows export.
     
  9. dacloo

    dacloo

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    Am I wrong or does my project run faster on this new version? (FPS)
     
  10. socksy

    socksy

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    Your project worked on this one? 0.o

    >_< Windows >_<

    Well, atleast I've sent a bug report...
     
  11. tsphillips

    tsphillips

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    Some strangeness with the file sizes (compare windows to universal binary sizes), but otherwise It's working well -- my happiness factor has gone up immensely. :D
     
  12. marty

    marty

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    I've posted under Support on a problem with the web plug-in not working with the new MacBooks.
     
  13. Samantha

    Samantha

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    Question: When the windows web player is officially released, will indie license owners will be able to publish to it, even with the watermark intact?
     
  14. antenna-tree

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    I might be looking at this the wrong way, but to me the mac/windows web plug-in should be universally accessible by all licenses of Unity. Like I said earlier the problem is someone could publish an entire game into the plug-in and thus circumnavigate the pro license. So OTEE is looking into the near future when all games are available on-line with our fat broadband pipes? So I could sell my game to both platforms without shelling out for the pro license. I understand this view for game publishing/selling, but there's another completely different market of on-line content that has little to do with games but very much to do with 3D web interfaces and small interactive widgets (for lack of a better terminology). Shockwave 3D has all but died out and I'm excited about Unity succeeding where Shockwave 3D failed. What happens if/when Unity is ported to Windows? Does this subject become moot? Would Windows users of Unity have to go pro to publish to Mac? Of course not. It's a lop-sided deal... "if you want to access the other 95% of computer users then pay the price". I agree 110% about pro users only being able to publish a Windows executable game for sale, but web publishing is a little bit of a grey area. Again, I'd be more than happy to pay an extra fee (Indie Web Developers License) to be able to get to show my stuff to the rest of the computing world. I'm not complaining really, I know this is a complicated situation and I respect OTEE's position... and if I had the money available I'd buy Unity Pro in a second.
     
  15. taumel

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    Hi,

    great news! A windows-web-player. Like marty i'm looking forward when it's running on mozilla so to have a look at it.


    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  16. Joachim_Ante

    Joachim_Ante

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    Yes. When the final version of the web player is released, indie users will be able to publish to it, albeit with a watermark.
     
  17. Bampf

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    Just wanted to express my own opinion here, that the watermark solution is a reasonable compromise. It's been a given all along that the Indie version does not let you deploy to Windows. Being able to do so via a browser was never promised, and could possibly invite abuse of the system. (For instance I could see someone deploying a Windows build consisting of an HTML file that runs the player.)

    Sure, I'd love to be able to demo my projects for friends with PCs, but I can see OTEE's point of view on this one.
     
  18. jeremyace

    jeremyace

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    I do see OTEE's point of view on this issue. It is dificult to secure something like this. But magically having a watermark when the same game is played on a windows browser, but not on a Mac browser doesn't seem fair at all.

    Internet is internet and there shouldn't be any difference between windows web and mac web. It should be all in the same. I would understand if they already had a watermark in the mac version, but they don't. I will not put out a game with a watermark, and I won't pay the price of pro just to get that feature.

    OTEE already has a huge, loud "Unity Loading Data" screen on the web players, so I really don't think they need a watermark for advertising. It seems like it was just a quick fix to keep people from publishing to windows standalone with a web page. I think limiting the file size of an indie-built player to what you would normally use on the web is a better solution. Anyone making a standalone game for windows is going to want more than that.

    I simply won't make a game with a watermark, and I think adding them now is a bad idea.

    -Jeremy
     
  19. marty

    marty

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    I think that's the whole idea. No one would want to make (sell) a game with a watermark, but you can test it with one.
     
  20. Samantha

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    I'm extremely happy to hear that. Thanks for giving indie license owners some method of viewing our content on PC. I'm very appreciative.
     
  21. SupaPuerco

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    From the way I understand it you won't have a choice. If you build for the web, Windows people will see the watermark, Mac people won't. Seems fair to me, they are giving you more bang for your buck in a free upgrade. A free upgrade to allow (limited) Windows support is good news for me! The web player does not exactly seem like a good environment for a full game anyway.
     
  22. socksy

    socksy

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    You tell that to the NewGrounds people.
     
  23. David-Helgason

    David-Helgason

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    Couldn't agree more.

    With Web Player games being able to go full-screen, I could see only ever playing games in the browser as being realistic: the performance cost is low (and minimal in full-screen) and there's no need to install anything.

    I think a lot of non-AAA game distribution is headed this way.

    d.
     
  24. jeremyace

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    Don't get me wrong guys, I really like what OTEE gives us (and I do mean gives) us with Unity. I think the packages they provide are fair and well balanced. It is also really cool that they are allowing us to preview this new feature.

    What does bother me, is basically seperating the web. Ok, on Mac web you can publish your game to the Mac Web and it will not have a watermark, but if someone from Windows Web takes a look at the same game it will have a watermark. It really doesn't seem fair to me to allow Publish To Web Player in indie and then telling us that it is for Mac Web only, and if you want to get the same result if someone from Windows looks at the same game, you'll have to pay a large chunk of $$$ for pro. Publish to Web should be publish to web. Not publish to web for macs only, and we'll add a watermark if it is viewed on PC. That's what bothers me. I have no problem what so ever with OTEE only allowing PC standalones in pro. That is completely fair. It is just that the internet should be universal.

    I also understand that OTEE probably added this to prevent people from using the web player for full standalone (I doubt it is advertising...look at the large Unity Loading Data page at the start). I really understand that, I am just saying I don't think it's the best solution.

    Just my opinion.
    -Jeremy
     
  25. freyr

    freyr

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    It has taken OTEE a lot of resources and work enabling windows browser to play that same data file. You are confused by the fact that the game data are the same. Loading the data from the web won't magically make the porting effort any less hard than a standalone port. It still requires a ported game engine and a plug in to run.
     
  26. guategeek_legacy

    guategeek_legacy

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    So yah maybe it takes a lot of porting work to get it on the PC. But Web is its own medium and I agree its retarded to make it different on a Mac and a PC viewing the same thing. You think the viewers are going to understand? Corse there not, all they are going to do is be unhappy and feel deeked out. I vote against the watermark. Web is its own platform, and should be 100% platform independent, just think if Flash for Mac had a watermark and for PC it didn't for the exact web site, that would be retarded. Jeff
     
  27. taumel

    taumel

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    Hi,

    first can someone post a screenshot of how such a watermark looks like? I haven't seen it yet and i've just imagined that it must be pretty awful, okay?! :O)

    When i think about it then i feel that publishing to web should be just publishing to web, no matter if i'm running on mac,pc or whatever.

    It feels wrong that i do have watermarks here and not there because the only ones who will experience this will be those who download the content. And i guess they don't know about how it came to this.

    I understand your need to say: This costed us a large amount of research/investment/... but that's not the point for the customers and endusers. This is an investment you'll have to make to get it running. And if great content is spread you will also benefit from this as more users will be aware of this tool. I also guess this is the main reason for you to allow a watermarked web for pc at all as without this most of the people won't see unity-web-productions...

    A traditional way would be to distinguish the product more in other fields and allow less and more features between different unity-versions in the graphics/physics engine and filesize.

    Also always keeping a unity splash screen when publishing with indie could be an option whilst i have to say that i'm definately no friend of such things as i think what i built with my work should look like my work. Never witnessed a case where a splash screen showed up and told me. "Welcome user! Don't panic as this tool has been compiled with M$ Visual Studio..."

    Another way would be to differ if you pay for what you want to publish for. Mac standalone goes for x€. If you wanna publish to web it adds x€ and if you want it all it costs x€.

    Just some thoughts...and i'm aware that each solution keeps someone unhappy...


    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  28. taumel

    taumel

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    It would be nice if i could delete a post i did. Otherwise if i wrongly selected quote instead of edit i can't get rid of it...
     
  29. socksy

    socksy

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    I don't have a PC to hand, so no screenie, but this should run with a watermark if you have a PC, I tried it yesterday (see the bottom right hand corner):

    http://www.zen22638.zen.co.uk/ben/movies.html

    I think it looks quite smart, better than I expected. Though, in some scenes the halo gets in the way.
     
  30. taumel

    taumel

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    Thanks,

    but i can't look at it as i don't use the Internet Explorer at all and so no plugin...


    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  31. socksy

    socksy

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    Me neither, I had to search my computer for it :)

    You have to click on allow active x content or whatever, for it to work on it, and hence more work would have to be done to get it on firefox :(

    I use FireFox all the time and it is slightly annoying not being able to use it, but I don't want to demand too much of otee, since many potential users don't bother with firefox.

    And in the switch to Vista, people are likely not going to use Firefox for a long while whilst checking out the new cooler pukable Aero Internet Explorer.
     
  32. Joachim_Ante

    Joachim_Ante

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    We are working on a Firefox version at the moment.
    In any case, it would be good if those who care about the web plugin on windows started testing now instead of waiting for the Firefox plugin.

    So far we either have zero bugs in our Web Plugin or no one is really stress testing it. ;-)
     
  33. taumel

    taumel

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    Well,

    i for sure won't touch any Internet Explorer 6.x on my dev-machine here. IE7 is a different thing as it seems that this could be a really good browser. We'll see in a few months...but i'm sure otee also does some reasonable qa-testing on it's own, right?! ;O)


    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  34. Joachim_Ante

    Joachim_Ante

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    You are doing web development and you don't test with Internet Explorer? Wow.

    Yes we do a lot of internal testing. But the reason we are putting out betas is so that more people can find different weird corner cases and it won't break on the end-user machine.
     
  35. taumel

    taumel

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    >>>You are doing web development and you don't test with Internet Explorer? Wow.<<<

    a) I don't do html...
    b) I do have an old computer here on which the Internet Explorer is installed for testing purposes if i need it but this is no cute 3d machine.

    >>>Yes we do a lot of internal testing. But the reason we are putting out betas is so that more people can find different weird corner cases and it won't break on the end-user machine.<<<

    Sure, i was kidding... ;O)


    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  36. vineeee

    vineeee

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    here ya go

     
  37. taumel

    taumel

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    Ahh okay, thanks for the post! I will have to zoom this a bit... :O)

    Greetings,

    taumel
     
  38. vineeee

    vineeee

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    Sorry, it got shrunk a bit when I stuck it on my isp's free webspace. You can see the size of the logo though.
     
  39. jeremyace

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    Outcast already answered this, but I shall add a comment here.

    First of all,
    I am well aware of the rewriting and effort required to make software made on Mac work on PC and so on. That is obvious and it seems a little bit rude to me to imply that I am an idiot. I am sure that wasn't your intention though so it's cool. Just wanted to mention it.

    But as it was said, the web medium is the same no matter what computer you are viewing on. That's why the W3C exsists. To maintain a set of web standards. So yeah, you have to do a lot of work/research/etc to put out a windows web plugin, but doing so is a great investment on your part as more and more people will look at Unity now that it can (will) publish to PC web.

    Adding a watermark on just the indie published games on windows UNLESS you pay over $700 to upgrade or the full retail price is going to turn a lot of those people away and annoy the users you already have. Does it also mean we will have to spend more money for "publish to firefox web"?

    Another thing that bothers me is you guys advertised publish to web player in the indie section of the otee:store:
    So you told us we could publish to web player. Not that publish as web player meant it will run clean without a watermark on mac, but when someone from the PC world views the same game, it will have a watermark unless you pay another $700 (or whatever). Not good.

    -Jeremy
     
  40. Marble

    Marble

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    Philosophically I agree with jeremyace's points. It's been a long battle to standardize access to web-based media, and it's a shame to have roads pointing away from that in new development.

    Not that I want this personally, but on principle I would rather have OTEE add a watermark to indie web games viewed on the Macintosh than keep it just as a crutch for Windows users. Maybe a compromise could be made so that they make the mark smaller than it is now and add it to both.
     
  41. aaronsullivan

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    vineeee: For future reference, you can attach pictures to your post. They'll be hosted on the forum. :)

    From my point of view, I'm interested in creating standalone games, not web players. It's a no brainer to me. I'd barely mind if there was a watermark on the mac version of the web player. In fact, most of the arguments here about standardizing and making it the same everywhere lead me to the conclusion that the watermark should be on BOTH platforms for the web versions.

    The problem here is the difference in goals. I like the web feature for sharing progress and making an easy access demo version. Having a watermark on those doesn't bother me. If I want to make a more prominent game on a web page to draw people to bigger standalone games, then I'd find it justifiable to get the pro version.

    If you are looking at Unity for an interactive web tool, it's a different story. I don't see how the guys could offer a non-watermark version, right now.

    Maybe there should be a web publishing only version? It could have no watermark, but you couldn't publish to an app. Yes, you could distribute it with the html file being the launcher, but then you'd lose the nice resolution choices and input choices.

    If it cost the same as Indie would anyone here choose that over what Indie is now? Would you consider losing the ability to make a standalone player to get the web version without a watermark?

    Of course, no one wants watermarks. I'd also like all the Pro features in Indie as well... but, then, who pays the Unity guys for their work? As much as we all love Unity and otee it's not exactly Macromedia and Flash used to be a lot more expensive, remember? I think eventually, after some real success, it will be an easier decision. Eventually, there could be a different split in features between Indie and Pro and the Indie version could ditch the watermarks.
     
  42. yellowlabrador

    yellowlabrador

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    I agree with aaronsullivan.

    I might publish on web just for testing or a little demo.
    putting a watermark on both platform is fine with me.

    Can I put a watermark of my own?

    Can the watermark be transparent so at least it's not too visible.
    Maybe that will be acceptable with the indie licensee.

    just my 2 cents.

    Ray
     
  43. antenna-tree

    antenna-tree

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    Actually Flash used to be half the price it is now. I bought in at 3.0 and it was $299. And Flash was dual platform with the Flash/SWF Player (online or offline)... So dual platform "standalone" was kind of built in from the beginning. But of course the priorities were flipped. The importance of Flash was small file sizes for web distribution and the off-line standalone player was maybe an afterthought for uses such as interactive documentation, kiosks, etc.

    My position is starting to lean towards pro only for no watermark though. Everything is indeed moving towards on-line distribution and OTEE needs to draw a difinitive line in the sand between the 2 licenses. But I still re-iterate the fact that if the Unity developer app is ever ported to Windows then this watermark will have to disappear.
     
  44. aaronsullivan

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    Maybe I was thinking relatively about the price of Flash. I used to be a lot more broke than I am now. :D
     
  45. antenna-tree

    antenna-tree

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    The only reason I remember that price is because it was the first piece of software I ever bought... and GoLive for $99 :wink:
     
  46. joacoerazo_legacy

    joacoerazo_legacy

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    Hi,

    When will be released the final intenet explorer plug-in?

    Thank you in advance
     
  47. Joachim_Ante

    Joachim_Ante

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    We are planning to release the IE/Firefox Web Player final along with our next major release in May.

    A beta featuring the windows firefox web player will be released soon.
     
  48. joacoerazo_legacy

    joacoerazo_legacy

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    Thank you Joachim,

    Next Mayor release? Unity 1.2.3 or Unity 2?

    Thank you in advance
     
  49. joacoerazo_legacy

    joacoerazo_legacy

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    That will support intel besed Macs?

    Thank you in advance
     
  50. Joachim_Ante

    Joachim_Ante

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    Unity 1.5.
     
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