Unity has announced Unity Playground, a new project designed to encourage children and their teachers to explore "the joy of making and playing games" with a simplified form of the software.
The Simplified Inspectors for both Playground scripts and its built-in components have been designed to ensure new users "will not be overwhelmed by the complexity of the UI", and users can switch between the simple version and the full Unity editor.
"Unity Playground removes the need to code by providing an array of one-task Components that are easy to use and mix," says Unity. "By combining them together, you can create physics-based 2D games spanning several game genres. Define your game rules. Build a character controller. Lay down a colourful scene and its collisions, and define YOUR winning conditions. You can make games for one or two players."
The software includes all the art assets and scripts the user needs to create six "super simple" games; a defender-style game, a two-player football game, a maze game, a Lunar Lander clone, a free-roaming and collecting adventure game, and a roguelike, which includes a simple inventory/crafting system.
"Now that you’re all fired up with ideas from our excellent examples, what delicious chaos will you create? Find snazzy little characters you can with different eyes, hair, mouths and hats," Unity adds. "Use the environment assets, buildings, props, and collectibles to practice simple game development techniques that will introduce you to the building block basics of Unity. The fact that it’s a 2D project means that even beginners can easily create and import new graphics. Try expanding the world of Unity Playground, or even building your own with your own art."
If you’re an experienced programmer and would like to lend your expertise to the Unity Playground project, check it out on GitHub.