Unity on 3DS is a Big Deal For Developers

By Ian Dransfield on at

Nintendo's New 3DS will support the Unity game engine, it was announced at the Unite 2015 Tokyo event.

This means one of the most-used engines out there - favoured by a lot of indie developers - is coming to the handheld, making ports of existing and upcoming games much easier to handle.

This sounded interesting, but I didn't really know why - so I asked Dan Marshall of Size Five Games, creator of The Swindle, to tell me things.

"I think Unity games on the New 3DS is a huge boon," he said, "It's a great little platform with a huge fanbase, but the system's always felt a little closed off especially when coupled with Nintendo's previous indie-unfriendly policies.

"Hopefully now you'll see a flood of all these amazing indie games that can suddenly be supported on the system with very little fuss."

It's certainly another interesting happening in Nintendo's ongoing mission to be more supportive to indies - and definitely an about-face on how things were a while back. But will the indies out there be willing to give Nintendo a chance, since the publisher wasn't too approachable to smaller devs in the past?

"Hopefully there aren't any indie devs out there silly enough to hold a grudge like that," Marshall laughed, "The 3DS sells like hot cakes, so there'll be a huge potential number of players out there, it'd be ridiculous to turn your back on that."

All the same, Marshall said he doesn't think it's specifically a move by Nintendo to be 'indie-friendly': "I'd suggest people want more games to play and this is a hugely significant in-road for Nintendo to allow that to happen. I don't understand businessy things, so you'll have to ask them, but that seems reasonable to me?"

It sounds reasonable to me, too. But one more thing: The Swindle is being made in Unity, so does it mean it'll be coming to the New 3DS now?

"I'm up to my neck finishing the console versions of The Swindle at the moment, so adding another platform to the list is the last thing on my mind," Marshall admitted, "But as soon as the dust settles, sure, I'd love to look into it."

[image via Mark MacDonald]