Microsoft's HoloLens Reaches Deal With One of the Biggest Game Engines

Microsoft reveals partnership with HearthStone game engine Unity for a free HoloLens toolset.

156 Comments

During Microsoft's Build conference today in San Francisco, the company officially announced a partnership with Unity Technologies--maker of the Unity game engine--related to the exciting-looking HoloLens technology. The Unity game engine is one of the biggest in the business, powering popular games like HearthStone: Heroes of Warcraft and Cities: Skylines, among many others.

No Caption Provided

As part of the deal, which Unity called an expansion of the two companies' "strategic collaboration," Microsoft and Unity are working together to offer an "optimal authoring solution" for HoloLens. This includes customized tools (anchoring holographic objects to specific places in the real world was one example) and other optimizations that Unity developers can use to create all manner of games and apps.

These new Unity tools for HoloLens will be available as part of the Unity Pro and Unity Personal packages for free, the company said.

"Expanding our relationship with Unity Technologies was a natural next step in bringing content to Microsoft HoloLens," Microsoft Xbox boss Yusuf Mehdi said in a statement. “We are very excited to unveil this partnership and look forward to the possibilities it will open for developers creating experiences for Microsoft HoloLens."

HoloLens was announced in January during a marquee Microsoft event. Outside of a Minecraft tech demo, though, Microsoft hasn't announced any games for HoloLens. However, this is an area the company is definitely looking at. No third-party games for HoloLens have been announced yet either.

For a closer look at HoloLens, check out GameSpot's image gallery.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Join the conversation
There are 156 comments about this story
156 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for lukeskyrunner
lukeskyrunner

you neeed glasses for it to work, one for each person. Another failed product by Microsoft

Pre-order cancelled

Avatar image for ark13700
ark13700

excuse me while i fit my family into one vr headset

Avatar image for oldtobie
oldtobie

So? It's not like there's an easier way to create holograms.

Avatar image for drflyntcoal
DrFlyntCoal

@lukeskyrunner: Till you invent working Augment lenses, we'll stick to AR glasses.

Avatar image for rasdorx
Rasdorx

@lukeskyrunner: Really you need the glasses for it to work no crap Sherlock.

Avatar image for lukeskyrunner
lukeskyrunner

@rasdorx@lukeskyrunner: what if you already use glasses? 90% of gamers use glasses

Avatar image for iammcgruber
IAmMcGruber

@lukeskyrunner@rasdorx: did you just make up a statistic?

Avatar image for zrex2metagor
zrex2metagor

@lukeskyrunner@rasdorx: been gaming for 23 years and I've never had glasses B)

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@7tizz: There's this thing called sarcasm.

Avatar image for deactivated-5a60f921620ed

@reduc_ab_: and small pee pee's. You have both!

Avatar image for etremelegendary
etremelegendary

VR is just a different screen, cool in it's own.

AR can introduce a different way of playing, interacting with the new screen.

Avatar image for ArabrockermanX
ArabrockermanX

@etremelegendary: Both will not change the way we live...

Avatar image for gregglle
gregglle

Vr actually is going to change the way we live. Big time. Moreso than any invention/innovation before it

Avatar image for etremelegendary
etremelegendary

@ArabrockermanX@etremelegendary:

Not if you don't play it.

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@etremelegendary: VR is about creating a new reality. AR is about modifying this reality.

Avatar image for etremelegendary
etremelegendary

@reduc_ab_@etremelegendary:

Entering a different world when you put the headset on.

Modifying this world with interactive AR.

Avatar image for edwardnygma
EdwardNygma

@7tizz: My god you sound like that fanboy Sevenizz who got banned. Oh.....wait.....

Avatar image for BassMan
BassMan

I just don't get excited for AR. VR is much more appealing to me. AR just doesn't seem as immersive to me as it is not a seamless integration in the real world. Another thing that I always wondered with AR glasses. How do they immerse you with sound? How are they doing positional audio and able to make it believable?

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@BassMan: I think the point with AR is to augment *this* world, as opposed to creating a new world. VR is all about escaping from this reality entirely. Personally, VR is far preferable.

Avatar image for ITLM16
ITLM16

i dont think VR is truly going to be ready any time soon but it does stand a better chance than this hololens nonsense

Avatar image for gregglle
gregglle

And you have absolutely no evidence to back this statement up. It's all assumption. Lol

Avatar image for TristanPR77
TristanPR77

As far as I know, Sony already said they will launch Morpheus next year so I don't think is that far.

Plus, VR offer a level of immersion that AR can't.

Avatar image for nickpeck36
nickpeck36

@ITLM16: Says the guy that has no clue about it at all lol.

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@ITLM16: Well, I think VR is ready to hit the market, but I also believe that it will be much better down the line. If the immersion is there, I can deal with less-than-perfect technology. So far the demos for Sony's Morpheus have gotten really good reviews.

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

Eh. Dead-end tech at best (at least in terms of gaming). VR is where it's at, MS. Get your sh_t together.

Avatar image for deactivated-5a1d4b615a3a3

@reduc_ab_: Not at all, VR is obviously going to be better in helping games be more immersive but AR has many more options for enhancing gameplay such as providing a digital second screen, interactive world maps and even taking the HUD off the screen and placing it anywhere you want.

Avatar image for gregglle
gregglle

Why would I want a second screen when I could be surrounded by the world instead?

Avatar image for thegiftoffear
thegiftoffear

@gregglle: Your world is tethered to a computer or console. The HoloLens is self-contained. I would rather have the digital world project onto my physical world then being a purely digital. There's really nothing that prevents MS from creating its own VR tech from this AR stuffs. Or better yet, just partner with Oculus or HTC and you are good to go.

Avatar image for oldtobie
oldtobie

Not to mention the non gaming application of AR. Could do a lot to improve workflow and make other in home activities easier as well.

Avatar image for nparks
nparks

So now we can play Yu-Gi-Oh! with holograms, just like on TV?

Avatar image for TristanPR77
TristanPR77

While AR could not offer the immersion level that VR can offer, at least it looks good for casual games.

Maybe it doesn't end up like kinect.

Avatar image for tomahawk08
Tomahawk08

@7tizz: Now this was funny.

Avatar image for nickpeck36
nickpeck36

@tomahawk08@7tizz: Best part is, he is right. I don't think you have any clue as to how many original Kinects were sold outside of the Xbox systems. There are a ton of them being used for so many different things. Do a search and learn something.

Avatar image for tomahawk08
Tomahawk08

@7tizz: Of course it sells a lot when it was mandatory.

And you have no right to call anyone a fanboy.

Avatar image for shreckstoff
Shreckstoff

man AR Hearthstone would be beautiful

Avatar image for shadyshack
shadyshack

go ahead Microsoft make me proud to support you here. I like innovation and everything it brings i'm looking forward to this more than VR as it has been tried before and failed. so let's hope that this is a winner.

Avatar image for xolivierx
xolivierx

Gamespot has been so boring lately. Almost every article is about COD, gaming deals, or crap like this article

Avatar image for Sl4cka
Sl4cka

@xolivierx: Is it not Edgy enough for you?

Avatar image for etremelegendary
etremelegendary

Damn. This could be really cool!

Avatar image for Sl4cka
Sl4cka

@etremelegendary: It could also be really shite. We'll just have to wait and see.

Avatar image for etremelegendary
etremelegendary

@Sl4cka@etremelegendary:

Let's hope the developers don't have your pessimism.

Avatar image for suicidesn0wman
suicidesn0wman

@Sl4cka@etremelegendary: Or it could be both, like with every other gaming platform, some games will be good others will s*ck.

Avatar image for Sl4cka
Sl4cka

@suicidesn0wman: Indeed.