Unity game engine begins to catch up to improvements in .NET

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So what is Unity you ask? Unity is a game engine originally developed around the year 2005 for Mac OS X, it has since been extended to over 20 platforms including iOS, Android and Windows as well as the web. The engine is built using C++ and leverages C# for scripting.

Microsoft has been slowly but surely improving .NET over the course of the last five years. These efforts have not gone unnoticed by the development team over at Unity. However keeping up with the latest release and features of .NET has not been happening, but that’s about to begin to change, according to a thread on the Unity forums:

Unity’s fork of Mono is about two years behind the latest upstream code.

So this effort pulls in many bug fixes from upstream Mono.
It also improves the managed debugger.
It will allow Mono to run in 32-bit floating point mode, improving floating point performance.
It brings in more .NET Core class library implementation, including many changes to the way the class library code interacts with platform-specific code.

Josh Peterson, Unity Technologies

Some of the notable changes include added support for .NET Standard 2.1, C# 8 support and soon after C# 9 support as well.

.NET 6 support further away on the horizon. This addition is a huge step forward, however it is a breaking change. The Unity team does not have a firm idea of when it will be delivered, but once implemented it will pave the way to being able to quickly bring on new features and fixes.

At the end of the day these changes mean improved performance, stability and ease of use. This progress is great news for .NET developers, as Microsoft evolves .NET its great to see partners like Unity keeping up with these changes. Chances are some of the video games you’ve played in the last 15 years have been powered by Unity, so these benefits will undoubtedly mean better games for all of us to enjoy.

Head over to Unity’s forum for more information and to follow the conversation around these upcoming updates and more.