Unity 2021.2 Beta Released

Unity have just released a new Beta of their flagship game engine, Unity 2021.2 Beta. The previous Unity 2021.1 beta release was more heavily focused on stability and performance, while Unity 2021.2 beta is more heavy in the features category.

Improvements to the Unity Editor include:

  • Editor: Scene View tool overlays, quality-of-life improvements, Editor performance optimizations, a beta of the Apple Silicon Editor, the AI Navigation experimental package, feature sets
  • Scripting: Performance improvements, Asset Import and Scriptable Build Pipeline optimizations
  • Profiling: Better connectivity, platform, and Scriptable Render Pipeline (SRP) support in the Profiler, Experimental System Metrics Mali Package
  • Platforms: Chrome OS support, Android ABB support, Android and WebGL improvements, Adaptive Performance updates, UDP improvements

While the game engine and renderers gained several new features as well:

  • High Definition Render Pipeline (HDRP): Volumetric clouds, Terrain details, Streaming Virtual Texturing, Nvidia DLSS, improvements to Path tracing and Decals UX 
  • Universal Render Pipeline (URP): Scene Debug View Modes, Reflection Probe blending and Box Projection support, URP Deferred Renderer, decal system, Depth prepass, Light Layers, Light Cookies, SSAO performance improvements, new samples, and more
  • SRP: Lens Flare system, Light Anchor, GPU Lightmapper Lightmap Space Tiling, Enlighten Realtime GI, SRP settings improvements
  • Authoring tools: Terrain tools updates, SpeedTree 8 vegetation, Shader Graph improvements, UI Toolkit runtime, better VFX graph and ShaderGraph integration, improved URP support, and more 
  • 2D tools: 2D Renderer improvements, 2D Lights in Light Explorer, Custom Lighting node for Shader Graph, VFX support, new 2D URP template, Sprite Atlas v2 new APIs and folders, updates to 2D Animation, 2D Tilemaps, and 2D Physics
  • Cinematics: Experimental package Sequences, updates to Recorder, Alembic, and Python, Cinemachine simplified impulse, Unity Virtual Camera and Face capture in beta

You can learn more about this release on the Unity blog or by watching the video linked below. As always, the Beta release is available in the Unity Hub and the standard disclaimer applies… this is not a production ready version!

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