AWS announces General Availability of the Amazon GameLift Plug-in for Unity with CloudFormation Templates
Today, we are excited to announce the general availability (GA) of the Amazon GameLift Plug-in for Unity on GitHub, making it easier to access GameLift resources and integrate GameLift into your Unity game. Amazon GameLift is an AWS managed service for deploying, operating, and scaling dedicated servers for multiplayer games. GameLift provides a full toolset for preparing your multiplayer games and custom game servers to run on the managed GameLift service. With this update, you can use the Amazon GameLift Plug-in for Unity to access GameLift APIs and deploy AWS CloudFormation templates for common gaming scenarios.
Historically, game developers’ first programmatic experience with GameLift starts with downloading and integrating the GameLift Server SDK. To ease game development, a majority of these developers utilize a game engine, with Unity as a popular choice. Because GameLift provides the Server SDK in source code form, this requires the developer to download the source code zip file and build the C# libraries in order to use with Unity, a manual and time intensive process. Even after overcoming this initial hurdle, developers then need to understand how to deploy to different infrastructure on AWS to run GameLift deployment, including supporting infrastructure like SNS, DynamoDB, and Lambda. This can be a complicated and time-consuming process for a customer unfamiliar with AWS.
The GameLift Plug-in for Unity provides everything a Unity developer needs to access GameLift APIs. After downloading and installing the plug-in package into their Unity development environment, developers can use the native plug-in UI to configure their plug-in settings, perform local testing of builds of their game server, and import and run a sample Unity game. The GameLift Plug-in for Unity also includes five pre-built CloudFormation sample scenarios that developers can customize for their game, making it easier to integrate GameLift with AWS. The five deployment scenarios include:
- Auth Only – this scenario create a game backend service that performs player authentication.
- Single-Region Fleet – this scenario creates a game backend service with a single GameLift fleet.
- Multi-Region Fleets with Queue and Custom Matchmaker – in this scenario, GameLift queues are used in conjunction with a customer matchmaker. The custom matchmaker forms matches by taking the oldest players in the waiting pool. When there are enough players for a match, the AWS Lambda handler starts a queue placement.
- SPOT Fleets with Queue and Custom Matchmaker – this scenario is the same as Multi-Region Fleets with Queue and Custom Matchmaker except it configures three fleets. Two fo the fleets are SPOT fleets containing nuanced instance types.
- FlexMatch – this scenario uses GameLift FlexMatch, a customizable matchmaking service for multiplayer games.
You can easily deploy these five scenarios from the GameLift Plug-in for Unity.
“We are excited to release the GameLift plug-in for Unity to make it easier for games to harness the power of GameLift dedicated servers. We have heard from game developers that integrating GameLift into their games can be time consuming. The GameLift plug-in for Unity provides a one click installation experience within the Unity editor that will have developers up an running with GameLift within hours. We look forward to engaging with the Unity game development community on our GitHub project.” Chris Lee, Director of AWS Game Tech
Getting started with GameLift
As a reminder, in 2020, customers wanted an option to use their existing tools without GameLift’s game server management layer. So, we enabled GameLift FleetIQ and GameLift FlexMatch to do just that, while still experiencing up to 70% cost-savings compared to existing on-premises deployments. In 2021, we continued the momentum with updated feature availability in China (Beijing and Ningxia), adding AMD instance support for GameLift FleetIQ, and simplified fleet management across multiple regions. Stay tuned for more updates in the coming months. In the meantime, we would love to hear from you. Let us know what you think about this update and what features you would like to see in the future. Connect with the GameLift team on the forums or through the AWS Game Tech social media channels (Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn).