lesson 14: Game View
What's in the Game View is up to you! It's the result of everything you've put into the Hierarchy View.
Fig. 14.1 shows the Game View from the sec1Chap4Assets Scene.
Game View allows you to play your game (so long as there are no game-breaking bugs). Here you can playtest your game without having to create a build or ever leave the Unity editor. The Game View is the synergistic total of all the hard work you'll put into your game creation. As aforementioned it is controlled using the Play/Pause/Step Buttons in the Tool Bar.
Fig. 14.2 shows the Game View Control Bar.
The Game View Control Bar allows us access to the options Aspect, Scale, Maximize on Play, Mute Audio, VSync, Stats, and Gizmos. The Aspect menu drop-down allows the developer to choose from many common aspect ratios. Aspect ratios describe the proportional size between a screen's width and height and have a lot in common with screen resolution. Note that forcing a particular aspect will not resize the GameView but instead creates letterbox formatting. The default, Free Aspect, is acceptable for daily use. Scale allows you to zoom in and out of the Game View but the case uses for such a feature seem suspect. Maximize on Play is another toggle button. Having it active will ensure that the Game View enlarges so that it occupies your entire monitor when the Play button is pressed. Usually it's best to have Maximize on Play deactivated so as not to obscure the view of the Unity editor. More on that in a moment. Mute Audio does exactly that. Vsync, when activated, will prevent tearing (a phenomenon in which screen “movement” causes the image to update in the middle of rendering, resulting in the top half being offset from the bottom half), but may negatively affect frames per second. Note that the Vsync setting here does not affect the final build and that you may not have the option to set Vsync on or off depending on the target platform. Stats opens the Rendering Statistics overlay. The info relayed here will give valuable insight into the graphical performance of your game. Should you want the same Gizmos in your Scene View to appear in your Game View, you can edit the settings in the Gizmos drop-down menu. This is typically unnecessary and even unwanted.
Fig. 14.3 demonstrates Unity running the Game View of the final project.
Using Unity, it is possible to troubleshoot and edit your game as it runs! If not killer, it should be considered a mortally wounding feature of Unity. The ability to edit in real-time is a good reason not to activate Maximize on Play. With it deactivated you'll be able to see Unity and Playmaker running calculations in real-time. Note that when you hit Play everything but the Game View is tinted red. This is to remind you that you are in fact in Play Mode. It is possible to make and observe changes while in Play Mode for the purposes of tweaking and troubleshooting, but the minute you exit Play Mode all those changes will be lost (like tears in rain)! You have been warned!
In this short lesson we learned about the Game View and its function in playtesting. The default settings in the Game View Control Bar are ideal. Games can be edited while in Play Mode but all of the changes will be lost upon exit. Up next, Inspector View.