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Member Spotlight Unity Technologies
Growth of the Games Industry
The games market has exploded in the past seven years. In 2009 mobile games barely made a dent in the overall games market. Today mobile is one of the fastest growing segment. Advances in the graphics quality and player engagement have opened up mobile to a growing mid-core audience. The PC is experiencing renewed growth thanks to expansion of the overall player base that includes a wider demographic and broader geographic reach. In the future, new growth will also be supported by emerging opportunities in virtual reality/augmented reality and eSports. Ultimately, today's games cross an array of platforms that includes mobile, PC and consoles.
The latest data from the Open Gaming Alliance shows the total global games market for 2015 is estimated at $76 billion and is expected to reach over $100 billion by 2019. While all segments will see growth over the next four years, mobile and PC gaming will continue to grow significantly. The mobile games market is projected to reach $35 billion by 2019, while the PC games market is estimated to reach $36 billion.
This growth has proved to be the backdrop for major shifts in game development itself. Once accessible to only a handful of companies, game development is no longer dependent on large team with multi-million dollar budgets. Game development has expanded to include an increasingly wide range of companies - from the small studios to the medium and large studios.
A snapshot of these studios shows that 20% have over twenty-five people and currently make up the bulk of overall revenue, as outlined in research from M2 Research. These mid-to-large studios are looking for time-saving techniques and easy deployment options across multiple platforms. Start-ups and smaller studios have generally been in business less than eighteen months but make up 62% of all game studios. These companies need support and access to solutions and tools.
This shift in development has been in large part due to accessible tools. Unity has become an important tool set for independent developers and larger publishers alike who are looking for a flexible game engine, deep toolkit and an active developer community.
Unity - The Catalyst for Growth
Unity Technologies has been redefining the global games market since 2005 and has become the hallmark of game development. Used by the largest publishers down to the smallest studios, independent developers and students, Unity has redefined the landscape of game development for millions. In just three years Unity has gone from 250,000 users in 2012, to close to four million registered users in 2015.
Spanning across multiple markets, Unity is used by leading consumer brands, and entertainment companies including: Cartoon Network, Coca-Cola, Disney, Electronic Arts, LEGO, Nexon, Nickelodeon, Square, Ubisoft, Warner Bros., and Microsoft.
Unity also supports broader applications where games are currently being used for applications in education, neurogaming, architecture, engineering, construction, and visual simulation.
According to M2 Research developers list the following factors as the most important for development and tool support, in order of importance:
- Ease of use
- Multi-platform support
With the launch of Unity 5 back in March, Unity continues to provide features to help developers create and build games and interactive solutions. The Unity 5 Professional Edition has a number of key features:
- A new toolset for creating advanced lighting and visual effects
- Flexible 64-bit Editor with new audio mixer and animations
- Physically-Based Standard Shader, Enlighten Real-Time Global Illumination and PhysX 3.3 physics
- WebGL support
- Improved support for iOS Metal rendering
Unity Professional Edition includes several new services and benefits:
- Game Performance Reporting - Helps monitor your game, starting with a preview of Exception logging
- Unity Cloud Build Pro - Automates the creation and distribution of builds
- Asset Store Level 11 - Added discounts and benefits
- Unity Analytics Pro - In Beta, Unity Analytics provides deep-dive insights into your players' behavior.
- Team License - Free access to Cache Server and version control tools for the same monthly price you pay today, effective immediately.
- Unity's Asset Store remains an important and active community for any developer building products and looking for resources to support their work
- Support for leading virtual reality platforms including Oculus, Samsung Gear VR, Sony Morpheus and Microsoft Hololens.
The Future of Game Development
Game development has quickly moved into a new phase of expansion as platform vendors such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, Sony look to expand their individual ecosystems. As a result developers must innovate for each platform and build games that take advantage of each platform's strengths while maintaining a broad multi-platform strategy.
Competition to reach consumers has never been more prevalent and developers must work harder to find creative and innovative techniques that grab the consumer's attention. Discovery is imperative as crowded platforms require developers to continue to iterate and innovate. At the same time challenges continue as developers must effectively monetize games through a multi-platforms strategy.
The growing interest in virtual reality and augmented reality will have an instrumental impact on the industry over the next twelve to twenty-four months as the first hardware solutions launch and the first commercial immersive content appears. Virtual reality and immersive experiences provide developers with additional opportunities that extend beyond games into immersive entertainment, education, training, medical and communication applications.
Tomorrow's games and interactive experiences will expand the markets well beyond today's confined definitions. The entertainment and digital experiences of the future will be fostered by with a mix of innovation, imagination and inspiration.
We’re honored to be elected to the Open Gaming Alliance Board of Directors, said Min-Liang Tan, CEO, Razer. There is so much synergy between Razer’s core DNA – an essence of pure commitment to improving the PC gaming experience with state-of-the-art peripherals – and this organization’s drive to establish high standards and quality guidelines for the evolving industry at large. Both Razer and the Open Gaming Alliance are dedicated to addressing the needs of a maturing category and its largely sophisticated audience.