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1.2 Prerequisites

In order to follow along in this course, you will need to have at least two basic tools. The first is Unity, a 2D and 3D game engine and development environment. Secondly, you are going to need the Vuforia library, which extends Unity’s 3D functionality to more easily support AR.

In this course, I’ll show you how to develop this AR scene for an iOS device. If you want to build your scene for iOS, you will also need to have Xcode. However, since Unity is a cross-platform engine, you could just as easily follow along and build your app for Android.

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1.2 Prerequisites

Okay, let's get started with setting up our development environment to begin to dive into the world of augmented reality. Now in order for us to do this, we're gonna need a couple of tools and in all honesty, you could really go a number of different directions. I've chosen a couple here that I feel are, A, pretty decent industry standards that you're going to see a lot around the Internet if you start looking for code samples or other videos. You're gonna see these tools quite often. So that's reason number one, reason number two is that they're easily obtainable and free to get started, so that's another thing. And thirdly, the nice thing about these tools is that you can use them to practice and understand and get to understand the basic concepts of not only augmented reality, but game development in general. If that's something that you're interested in. And it's got a very low entry point for kind of learning how to do these types of things. But then they're also powerful enough to allow you to create these wonderfully immersive game worlds. And create these very intricate and very complicated games as well. So you have this very broad spectrum of capabilities, which is absolutely phenomenal in my mind. So let's go ahead and get started. So the first thing that we gonna need to get is Unity. Now Unity is a cross-platform game engine development environment that allows you to not only create game scenes, but also to develop logic and things to add to your resources within the games to truly create an immersive game experience. Once again, the cool thing about this is that it is free, you can work with it for free. You can create basic things or you can create very elaborate games. Now, I'm not going to make any assumptions about your knowledge of Unity, simply because for this course you don't need any. You really don't need to know very much. And what you do need to know I'm going to tell you as we go along. So if you've never use Unity, it can be a little overwhelming. But I'm telling you it's really not that bad once you kind of get in and start to play with a little bit. So the first thing I'm gonna recommend that you do is head over to store.unity.com. And then you're gonna head up to the upper right-hand corner, you're gonna need to create a Unity ID. So if you have one, go ahead log in now. If you don't, you're gonna want to click create a Unity ID. And you're simply gonna fill out this form and agree to the terms and services in the use policy and all that sort of good stuff. Create yourself an ID, that's gonna come into play later. Since I already have one, I'm just gonna log in, which in all honesty it's not necessary to do this right now. But you're going to need to be able to log in once you download the tool. So it's just a little bit easier to do that up front instead of having to come back and do it later. Now once you've done that, you can head down and you can see that this personal license to be able to download the tool and start to get using it is actually free, which is oftentimes the best price. And the reason that it's free is so that people can get started in using it and becoming familiar with it. But the nice thing about this too, is that you can even develop games and deploy them, and release them out to the world. As long as your revenue is under a $100,000, you don't have to pay for licensing, which is incredibly cool. Now I hope everybody out there creates the next game and makes a $100,000 in revenue, but unfortunately, that's not always the case. So at least for this particular course, we're gonna be able to get started with no cost. So once you've logged in and have selected Download now, it's gonna take you over to the download page. And another cool feature about Unity is not only does it allow you to create cross-platform games targeting iOS, Android, Windows Phone, tablets whatever have you, the tool itself is also cross-platform. So I can download different installers for different platforms. That means you could follow along in this course with a Windows PC, a Mac, whatever supported platforms they have here, which is very cool as well. So go ahead and click the button here to download the installer, and put it somewhere on your system. I have it on my desktop, and I'll show you that in just a moment. But before we get into actually installing Unity, we need to download one other thing. So we need to download this library called Vuforia. Now, Vuforia is a library that's going to really make things a lot simpler when it comes to understanding and getting started into the basics of augmented reality. Once again, this is gonna be free for you to get started with. And once again, you're also going to need to create an account. So if you head up to the right-hand side and click the Register button, you can go ahead and fill out this required information. Accept the terms and services and then you'll be all set to go. Now in this case I already have an account so I'm gonna click the Log in button. And I'll go ahead and log in now. And once I'm logged in I'm ready to go. So the next thing I'm gonna need to do is head over to the Downloads tab. Now on here you're gonna see a number of different downloads and supported platforms. But the one that we're gonna want is the Download for Unity here and as of this recording, the most recent one is 60114. Now that could change by the time you see this video. But regardless, as long as you're getting the latest and greatest of both Unity and Vuforia, you're gonna be just fine. So once you've downloaded both of these things, it's time to install them and get them configured. So as you can see, on my desktop I have both of these things downloaded and ready to go. So the first thing you're gonna wanna do is open up the Unity Download Assistant. Go ahead and double-click the Unity Download Assistant and it's going to run and download everything in the background for you. It's a fairly sizeable download so maybe walk away, take a break, get some coffee, whatever you need to do. And once it's done, you can come back and go ahead and open up Unity. So let's open up unity now. I'm gonna open up Unit. And the first time you open it up you're gonna see this kind of welcome Hello screen and this is why we create an account. And if you didn't do it before, it will remind you here that if you don't have a Unity account you can create one here. Now you can work offline but I would highly recommend registering this and just getting everything set up this way. Because it will definitely help you along the way, so that you don't have to worry about going back and forth and doing this stuff later. So I'm gonna go ahead and log in with my account, just like that. And now here we are, we are set to get started. Now, you may see in here that I have already created some stuff. I have some standard assets, an example project, and all that sort of good stuff. You can go ahead and play around with that. If you open this up and you don't have anything there, that's absolutely fine, don't worry about it. We're gonna start from absolute scratch. So as you can see here, we are logged in under My Account. You should see that now after you've logged in. Now the next thing I wanna do is I wanna create a new project. So I'm gonna click on New and we need to give this project a name. So I'm gonna call this the TutsARDemo. Then I'm gonna make sure I've selected 3D because this is going to be augmented reality, so we do need three dimensions. And then once we've done that, we can come down here and we can select the location we wanna place this. I'm simply gonna put it on my desktop. And then I'm going to select the organization that I want this to be running under, which is only set up under me, because that's the account that I created. And then from there you can either have the Unity Analytics set to ON or OFF, doesn't really matter, it's not going to going to affect us in this tutorial. So let's go ahead and click the Create project. And you'll see that it's gonna create a folder down here on the desktop. And then it's gonna open up the Unity IDE. I will tell you that this can be a little overwhelming if you've never seen this before. Unity, as I said before, is a very powerful tool. It can be used to do very simple things and very complex things. Now the interface is a little bit busy but don't worry about it. I'm gonna take you through the things that you absolutely need to know as we get to them. Now, if you're familiar with the interface, then you should be able to follow along quite simply. If not, please don't worry about it, you'll see after a little bit of going in and out of here, it's really not that bad. So once we've got our project open here, we wanna go over and find wherever it is we downloaded that Vuforia package. Now at this point I'm gonna go ahead and double-click on it. And it's gonna open up that package directly within Unity, in the Package Importer. And you're gonna see there's a whole lot of stuff going on in here. There's no reason to explain it. You really don't need to know much about it. All you need to know is leave everything checked by default as it comes and simply click the Import button. So it's gonna import all of those package resources and assets into my Unity project. And you're gonna see them here, very momentarily, show up in the bottom. So at the very bottom of the screen, you will see under this project's tab, and by the way, if for some reason your view doesn't look the way that mine does, you can simply head up to Layout and hit Default. And you should have something roughly the same to be able to follow along. So now that I have this going here, I can see down under my Assets folder I have two folders now. I have Plugins, so let's go ahead and expand this a little bit. I have Plugins, in which you can see I have different supported folders for different platforms, and I also have Vuforia here. So once you've downloaded and fired up Unity and installed the Vuforia Unity package, you're really ready to go. So now that we've gotten all this set up, it's time for us to start configuring and setting up the basics of marker-based tracking for augmented reality.