Just like that, cross-platform video game engine Unity now supports Windows Phone 8, BlackBerry 10, Windows 8 and Windows RT.
Version 4.2 of Unity, launched today, now covers all of the major mobile gaming platforms, including industry heavyweights iOS and Android. The update should make it considerably easier for both high-profile and emerging developers to quickly release their titles across a multitude of portable devices.
This will please gamers who are often disgruntled with the fact that games take considerably longer to appear in the Windows Phone Store or BlackBerry World app store – or simply never at all, more often than not.
Microsoft and BlackBerry are in desperate need of some high-profile video games to bolster the reputation of their respective platforms, so Unity 4.2 could help to change the frequency and quality of releases. This in turn boosts device sales and the interest in their respective mobile operating systems, encouraging other developers to port their titles.
For developers, the updated version should accelerate the speed and ease at which they can distribute their work on multiple platforms. Perhaps more importantly, it will also increase their revenues due to additional exposure and a much wider pool of potential players – and customers, depending on their monetization model.
Still free for indies
Unity made its mobile tools free for small and independent studios in May, removing all costs associated with distributing their work on iOS and Android. This carries over into Unity 4.2, although the company will continue to earn money from its Pro versions for large studios and “incorporated entities.”
To coincide with today’s release, Unity has also brought a trio of Pro features to the free version: real-time shadows, NavMesh baking and text-based serializations of materials, prefabs and scenes, among other assets.
Unity also supports other gaming platforms such as Windows, Mac, Linux, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii U. Unity is already working on expanding its tools for the PlayStation 4, PS Vita and PlayStation Mobile, as well as Microsoft’s upcoming Xbox One console.
For interested developers, it’s worth diving into Unity’s blog post and checking out some of the more incremental changes released today in version 4.2.
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