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Thousands of Soldiers Battle on One Mobile Screen: Applications of Unity's DOTS in 'Return to Empire'

Jian Xiao  (Principal Client Programmer of Return to Empire, TiMi Studio Group, Tencent)

Cangjian Hou  (Principal Engine Programmer of Return to Empire, TiMi Studio Group , Tencent)

Location: Room 2002, West Hall

Date: Thursday, March 23

Time: 3:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass

Topic: Programming

Format: Lecture

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: Intermediate

"Return to Empire" is a 3D massively multiplayer online strategy mobile game developed by TiMi Studio Group. Strategy games often face the demand for large-scale battles with thousands of people on the same screen. At this time, the performance of mobile phones becomes a bottleneck. As a high-quality full 3D strategy mobile game, "Return to Empire" faces even more difficult problems. After continuous research and development iterations, "Return to Empire" based on the application and practice of the Unity DOTS technology stack, finally achieved very good game effects and performance, and established a quality benchmark for SLG mobile games in large-scale battles.

We have accumulated rich research and development experience in the practice of DOTS, and have formed a set of effective practical experience for data abstraction, task parallelism, and logic splitting. We looked at how to better leverage multiple CPU cores and decouple them across multiple tasks. We combined with RenderMeshV2 to optimize the rendering. A set of efficient tools has also been accumulated for the workflow of art assets. I believe that these technologies can be very well applied to other games of the same genre, not just SLG games, but also all large-scale computing places. The potential usage scenarios of this technical solution are very broad.


DOTS methodology:
(1) Dependency Analysis and Optimization.
(2) ECS and non-ECS in parallelization.
(3) Split logic and visualization.
(4) Support frequency control on demand.

DOTS Workflow Optimization:
(1) Assets compatible with asset production pipeline.
(2) Multithreading solves performance bottlenecks in the main thread.
(3) Efficiently supports Instanced Rendering.

Intended Audience

This is for developers who are working on game titles that require large-scale computing, and are seeking optimization solutions.