New 2D dev tools come to Unity

New 2D dev tools come to Unity
Craig Chapple

By Craig Chapple

August 28th 2013 at 6:00PM

Open source C++ Box2D physics engine integrated into development platform

Unity has unveiled a new set of 2D tools for its Unity engine and editor.

Currently in beta, the tools were developed in response to growing demand for a specific feature-set to create 2D games.

Improvements to the workflow have been introduced, which included a dedicated scene view for specialised 2D scene manipulation tools.

The open source C++ Box2D physics engine has also been integrated into Unity, which the middleware firm said would provide better performance, more stable simulation and smaller game builds.

Other new features include a new sprite texture importer type, automated atlasing, a dedicated 2D rendering component. The Unity animation editor has also been upgraded with ‘dope sheet’ functionality and visual sprite animation editing.

The first iteration of the new tools will be released in Unity 4.3.

“We want to be relentless in the improvement of Unity and its usefulness to all developers,” said Unity CEO David Helgason.

“Unity can and has been used for the development of many amazing 2D projects, but we knew that it could be better. So we are taking a leap forward by introducing fundamental tools to make Unity a truly great 2D engine.”

Unity CTO Joachim Ante added: “Unity is already a great tool for making 3D games, and we wanted to make sure the same was true for 2D. But the ability to mix and match 2D and 3D easily makes Unity a uniquely powerful tool for game developers.”