Hello to all game developers who are frustrated with the performance of their games. Making a game is relatively easier these days, but making a game that moves, looks and feels fluid is not. I've spent a lot of time developing games, and it can get frustrating when they lag or aren't performing optimally.

Game development using the Unity engine has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its user-friendly interface, a wide range of tools, and powerful features. However, developing high-performance games can be challenging, especially for large and complex games. Here are some tips and tricks to improve your game's performance in the Unity game engine.

1. Optimising Game Scenes

Optimising game scenes in Unity is essential to achieve high performance in a game. This is achieved by reducing the number of objects in the scene, using optimised textures and models, and using a Level of Detail (LOD) system to control the level of detail of objects as they move further away from the camera.

It's also important to ensure your scene is properly composed and your objects are positioned and scaled correctly. Another important aspect of scene optimisation is to reduce the number of dynamic objects and instead use static objects whenever possible. This is because rendering is much more efficient.

Additionally, it is important to ensure that the scene is well-optimised for occlusion and that objects are culled properly to minimise the number of objects rendered at any given time. Following these tips, you can optimise your game scene to run smoothly on different devices.

2. Using Unity Profiler

The Unity Profiler is a useful tool to optimise your game and enhance its performance. This tool provides detailed information on CPU and GPU usage, memory consumption, and more, allowing you to identify performance issues and optimise your code.

To use the Unity Profiler, run your game in the Unity Editor and open the Profiler window, which displays a breakdown of resources being utilised. This information can be utilised to reduce the number of resources being used, optimise your code, and minimise calls to non-essential functions.

The Unity Profiler can also profile different devices and platforms, ensuring your game runs optimally on various systems. With this tool, you can improve the performance of your game, leading to a smoother and more enjoyable player experience.

3. Using Lightmap UVs

Lightmap UVs play a vital role in optimising the performance of Unity games. They are precalculated maps that store lighting and shadow information, significantly improving performance by reducing the number of real-time lighting calculations. Lightmap UVs allow for the utilisation of baked lighting, which is much more efficient than real-time lighting.

To use lightmap UVs, the UVs of the objects must be properly unwrapped, followed by baking the lighting information into a lightmap. This lightmap is then used to light the objects in the game, greatly reducing the impact of lighting on performance. Lightmap UVs also allow for control over the quality of shadows, enhancing the game's overall appearance.

By utilising lightmap UVs, you can ensure that your game runs smoothly and efficiently on a wide range of devices, all while creating high-quality lighting and shadows without sacrificing performance.

4. Avoiding Unnecessary Calls

Optimising game performance in Unity by avoiding unnecessary function calls is essential for smooth gameplay. Overuse of functions can slow down the game and cause stuttering, so it's crucial to be mindful of how you use them in your code.

One way to minimise the number of calls is through cache variables, which store the result of a function and reuse it instead of calling it repeatedly. This can significantly improve performance by reducing the number of function calls.

Another method is to decrease the frequency of function calls by using co-routines to break up processing into smaller chunks executed over multiple frames or calling functions less frequently.

Avoiding calls to functions that return the same result is important. This is often seen when repeatedly calling GetComponent to access a component that hasn't changed. In such cases, storing the reference in a variable is better than calling the function repeatedly.

By implementing these techniques, you can significantly reduce the number of unnecessary calls in your game, resulting in improved performance and a better player experience.

5. Using a Job System

The Unity Job System is an effective optimisation tool for the Unity game engine. It utilises multi-threading to increase game performance by executing multiple tasks simultaneously. The system assigns work to worker threads, reducing the load on the main thread and enhancing performance, especially for games with heavy computation like physics or AI. The system allows for writing simple parallel jobs, which can be scheduled, synchronised, and combined for optimisation.

Additionally, it offers automatic memory management, making memory management easier when working with worker threads. However, not all tasks can be parallelised; some may rely on previous task results. To optimise, analyse your game and identify tasks that can be parallelised. The Unity Job System can significantly improve performance, creating a smoother player experience and more efficient use of device resources.

By following these tips, you may optimise the performance of your games even as growing them in a cohesive game engine. Don't forget to frequently test and profile your sport to perceive and fix overall performance bottlenecks and optimise your code and assets as your game grows and evolves.

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