How to Install the Unity Game Engine with Unity Hub

Hello everyone! In this post I will be showing you how to install the Unity Game Engine using Unity Hub for macOS and Windows computers. Unity is the most widely used game engine software in the world for creating video  games! What makes it more amazing is that it can be used to create games for virtually every platform available today including desktop, console and mobile!

To learn more about Unity and the features it has, view our post What is the Unity Game Engine?

Getting Started 

First you will need to download a free software called Unity Hub to your machine. Unity Hub is free piece of software that allows you to download and install the Unity Game Engine to your machine. To download this, head on over to the official Unity Hub Download Page. Once there you'll see a page like this:

Unity Hub Home Page

Once there you will see two green buttons at the top of the page. The first says Choose your Unity + download, and the second says Download Unity Hub. In the older days, developers and creators downloaded individual Unity installations using the first green button. This quickly became difficult to manage and certain projects wouldn't work with newer versions of Unity and sometimes newer projects wouldn't work with older versions of Unity. Fast forward to now, and the Unity Hub is created to solve this problem (That is the second green button on the right). Not only does Unity Hub manage all your projects regardless of Unity version, it also helps you manage multiple versions of the Unity Game Engine on the same computer. This makes it possible to adopt new features or platforms, without harming existing projects that are in production. You also get the added benefit of being able to open two windows of Unity at the same time.

For this tutorial we will be using the new way of using Unity and click the Download Unity Hub button.

Installing Unity Hub on Windows (Option #1)

After you download Unity Hub on a Windows machine you should see a UnityHubSetup.exe file in your downloads folder. Double click the file to launch the installer.

When you open the installer file you should see a standard installation windows for Windows. The very first screen that will appear is the License Agreement. We recommend you read these and understand what they say. When ready click I Agree.

Next it will ask you where you want to install the Unity Hub program on your computer. From our experience we strongly suggest you leave this as is and do not modify this path. This will save you from having potential problems with installation in the future. Click Install when ready.

You might have to wait a few minutes for the installation to complete. Once finished the last screen in the installer will appear. There will be an option to Run Unity Hub. Make sure that is clicked and click Finish to close the installer.

Now when you try to run Unity Hub for the first time, it will most likely be blocked by Windows Defender. Again from our experience it is best to Allow access for Unity Hub, because if not, certain features might not work correctly. Click Allow Access.

After you do that a new window will appear. You should see a message that says "You have no projects here". You will also see a little banner at the Botton that says "You have no valid license". We will be covering how to fix this in the next step.

Installing Unity Hub on macOS (Option #2)

Similar to Windows, after you download Unity Hub to your Mac, you should see a file called UnityHubSetup.dmg in your downloads folder. Double click the file to launch the installer.

The first slide in the installer will show the Unity Terms of Service. After you have read it, click Agree to move on.

Next in standard Mac fashion, go ahead and drag the Unity Hub application into the Applications folder to make it official.

When you try to open the Unity Hub app, a popup from macOS will show stating that Unity Hub was downloaded from the internet. This is a security message letting you know that it came from the web and if you wish to open it anyway. Since we know this came from Unity, we will click Open.

Once Unity Hub opens you should see a screen that "You have no projects here". You will also see a message at the Botton similar to the Windows version that says "You have no valid license". Now that you have Unity Hub installed, we will go over how to fix this.

Activating Unity

If you noticed, after you installed Unity Hub there was a message saying "You have no valid license". That is because every installation of Unity and Unity Hub needs to be activated by logging into your Unity Account. 

Unity accounts are a free registration that you must complete with Unity in order to use their software. It also gives you additional benefits like access to their Asset store where you can buy game assets and completed projects for your games. To create a new Unity account click the icon in the top right corner of the Unity Hub window.

After you click Sign In, there is an option to register for a new account. Click the blue link that says create one.

When you click that, a new window for creating a Unity ID will appear. Fill out the form and click Create Unity ID.

Now when you return to Unity Hub go ahead and click the icon again, except this time sign in with your new Unity account.

This is great! Except there is still no installation of the Unity Game Engine. In the next step we will show you how to install a version of Unity to your machine.

Installing the Unity Game Engine

So in the beginning of this tutorial we installed the Unity Hub which is the center point for all our projects and unity installations. Now we will actually install a version of the game engine that way we can begin creating game projects.

To do this make sure the Unity Hub is open. Click the button on the left side of the screen that says Installs.

When the Installs page opens go ahead and click on the Add button located at the top right of the window.

The next screen that appears, is the Add Unity Version screen. This screens allows you to select what version of the Unity Game Engine you would like to install. It is important to establish with your team what version everyone will use or if you plan on using a project from the Asset store that you know what version it supports. In this example we are selecting the latest version of the Unity Game Engine, however feel free to select the version that works for your project needs. Click Next to continue.

The next screen describes what modules you would like to include with your Unity installation. By default the Unity engine will only include a standard desktop build option. This allows you to run your game on your machine. However if you want to install this on Android, iOS or even for the web using WebGL, you will need to select the module from the list. Go ahead and select which modules you would like to include.


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