At Moviestorm, we have always looked to making software tools more intuitive to use for the non-technical – that is the fundamental approach to our original Filmmaker product and more recently why we have to date put more than 30 man years of R&D into developing our VR-based FirstStage tool.
The Unity Editor however does not take that approach. It is a very technical tool, but also a fundamental gateway to giving the FirstStage user the flexibility to control what assets they are able to use within the FirstStage tool.
So, for those that are not accustomed to Unity, here is a basic guide to their user interface (UI) as a foundation for our guides.
NB – If the Unity Editor is installed, go to your Start Menu and you should find it under Unity/Unity (version number)/Unity
NB – If the Unity Editor is not installed and set up to manage FirstStage asset importing, see our Set up Unity page
We recommend that you take advantage of Unity help when stuck, or as a good foundation to developing with FirstStage.
This is a list of the most common Unity Editor interface windows and what they are for. The editor allows users to rearrange the layout, as preferred.
Follow the links to the relevant Unity Manual pages for more information.
Toolbar – A fixed part of the interface that consists of several groups of controls.
Hierarchy window – Contains a list of every GameObject in the current Scene. Some of these are direct instances of Asset files (like 3D models), and others are instances of Prefabs, which are custom GameObjects that make up most of your game.
Inspector window – Displays detailed information about the currently selected GameObject, including all attached components and their properties, and allows you to modify the functionality of GameObjects in your Scene.
Scene view – The interactive view into the world being created. This UI area could also have the Asset Store selected by default.
Game view – Lets you animate GameObjects in the Scene .
Animator window – Allows you to create, view and modify Animator Controller assets.
Asset Store window – An embedded webpage containing a library of free and commercial assets that Unity Technologies as well as members of the community create, which allows you to download and import assets directly into your project.
Project window – Displays all of the files related to the Project, to navigate and find Assets and other Project files in the Moviestorm application.
Console window – Shows errors, warnings and other messages generated by Unity and the Moviestorm application.
Animation window – Lets you animate GameObjects in the Scene.
Lighting window – Use to configure lighting for your Scene, to adjust settings related to precomputing lighting data, and to optimise your lighting for quality, speed and storage space.
If you manage to close a window, you can open them via the file menu toolbar under Window
If you want to dock (embed the window into the UI rather than just floating), hold the floating window by the tab, and drag it onto the tab area of any of the window areas listed.
NB – When you first use the FirstStage window, we would recommend that you dock it for future ease of use.
Unity uses a number of icons to represent certain file types. Here are a few examples of file icons that we may refer to in our guides.
Scene – Contains the objects of your ‘game’.
They can be used by a 3rd party asset publisher to display the assets contained in an asset package (a sample scene).
GameObject – The fundamental object in Unity scenes, which can represent characters, props, scenery, cameras, waypoints, and more. A GameObject’s functionality is defined by the Components attached to it.
Model Prefab – A read-only representation of the FBX file’s contents.