Make your assets open source when you deprecate them!

Hi community,

I'm strongly advocating that any authors who cannot support a given asset, deprecate it for a 1 month period and then make it open source with github link. I will support you on this and help manage your community in that transition - just give me a PM and I'll help out.

The reason for this initiative is to combat the rising problem of deprecated assets and angry customers. We can fix this by acting on the following:

  • Deprecated assets have no support :'(
  • Support from open source is worth far more than nothing <3
  • Honesty is always the best policy <3
  • Something new and great could happen <3
  • Great portfolio piece and goodwill gesture <3
  • community is king <3

Deprecated? SEND IT TO GITHUB!

Other assets have done this: Ceto and TextmeshPro, both of which I purchased and recommended to the authors to go open source before (in TMP's case I merely recommended Unity buy it).

We are all stung by deprecations at some point or other, but there are zero downsides to letting everyone support each other. This way, it isn't "deprecated", but "let free".

For people who are annoyed at something going open source:
Even if we pay for something, be it a big service or small (mixamo anyone?) eventually things come to the end of their lives, and people who pay for an asset that later goes free - you are helping yourself get support if it goes open source. It's the best thing that could ever happen to you, otherwise you get NO support.

Customers helped to make it but eventually even parents have to let the kids go.

Authors:
Here, I ask asset authors to be brave enough to deprecate their assets that they no longer can support properly, or aren't making any real money from, and let the community take care of it. I will help and explain if asked to do so to ease the process for the author, and the community.

Rationale:
We can make the deprecation aspect of the asset store turn from a bad thing into a very good thing. And I hope Unity backs me up on this with a polite email reminder to all authors who deprecate an asset, so people can build goodwill not fires and pitchforks. I haven't spoken to Unity about this, but I'm pretty sure it's the smartest possible thing to do. I just wonder why nobody's stepped up and said "lets make this a real and normal thing." since deprecation is only a question of when, in the end.

There are no downsides, so lets get cracking and fix up all those deprecated assets that could help the buyers who paid for them and people who want to help continue them!

Peace <3

76 Likes

Yes I agree with this wholeheartedly.

I also agree with the reasoning. here is where deprecated things go to die i have an rss feed watching when something is posted. https://www.gameassetdeals.com/?show=nowfree
how about this becomes a thread of the ones __that have_ gone from asset store to github._

100%. I have tried to share the gospel of going open source at the end of a product's lifecycle, but many don't listen. It can honestly bring the product into an entirely different, new, and sometimes better lifecycle. Going open source is great, but it also definitely helps to at least check the pull requests now and then or at least give another active and trust-worthy person in the community access to manage them on your behalf.

It was (and still is) great for the community when the Master Server Framework went open source, and I greatly thank alvyxaz for doing that and sharing his amazing work, but there have been many people who wanted to contribute, update, etc but unfortunately after it went open source no one has been able to update the wiki to try and help make corrections, help with code fixes, and the Discord of 350ish people was left with no admin/mod or anything.

I can understand that some devs are just done and over something sometimes, it is just super helpful to at least make sure someone is able to help manage things!

Thanks,
-MH

3 Likes

Open source is the antithesis of an asset store. The execution and flexibility behind a good script is what gives it value.
Still there is some merit to what's being asked here. I think the main issue however is the update schedule with Unity itself. It's so frequent that it's becoming cumbersome for content creators to manage their works on the asset store.

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"Deprecate". ;)

--Eric

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Just FYI, certain assets have to be deprecated so that publishers can create a major update with upgrade path for it. This way they only support the major up to date version and not the older. I think it's fair if the older version isn't available anymore. It's the best way to try to be sustainable these days....

SEGI also did this.

Any other examples beyond that and the couple Hippocoder mentioned?

I advocate it, its better than nothing, although there is still a big leap required from someone making it available, to people actively maintaining and improving it. But at least the chance to do that is there, even if nobody seizes it.

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It's totally up to the author and obviously means assets otherwise unavailable, I think that's pretty obvious.

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[quote=“PROTOFACTOR_Inc”, post:7, topic: 736828]
Just FYI, certain assets have to be deprecated so that publishers can create a major update with upgrade path for it. This way they only support the major up to date version and not the older. I think it’s fair if the older version isn’t available anymore. It’s the best way to try to be sustainable these days…
[/quote]

Hippo is talking about assets - probably mostly code-based assets - that are abandoned by their authors due to low sales, age of the product, or changes in life circumstances for the developer (poor health, new job, new family commitments, etc.). Developers can’t reasonably be expected to keep maintaining compatibility with each new version of Unity forever. At some point the asset developer has to withdraw, and that can leave old customers or customers who just bought it up a creek without a paddle.

A community chest of open sourced deprecated assets is an idea that covers the natural end-of-life of a code asset.

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RFPS and Ice Creature controller come to mind as great candidates for this.

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[quote=“hippocoder”, post:1, topic: 736828]
I’m strongly advocating that any authors who cannot support a given asset, depreciate it for a 1 month period and then make it open source with github link.
[/quote]
Ideally with a license that is compatible with Unity.

3 Likes

[quote=“elbows”, post:8, topic: 736828]
SEGI also did this.

Any other examples beyond that and the couple Hippocoder mentioned?

I advocate it, its better than nothing, although there is still a big leap required from someone making it available, to people actively maintaining and improving it. But at least the chance to do that is there, even if nobody seizes it.
[/quote]

While we are on this I wish devs would do this, not only ones that have been officially deprecated, but assets in which they either have flat-out said they no longer plan to support or update it, or where the devs just one day up and disappeared, yet still leave it on the asset store for sale in which poor unsuspecting people end up buying randomly down the road. A few come to mind such as.

https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/tools/particles-effects/zone-controller-pro-53632
(he said on the forums he just doesn’t have time for it anymore and won’t be supporting / updating)

and

https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/tools/modeling/mesh-combine-studio-101956
(As far as I know, the devs of this and several other assets fell off the face of the earth)

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It's not the first time words have been appropriated for computer-specific things, like "scroll" as in "text scrolling down a display". Or "sprite". Etc. etc. But it is the correct word here. :)

--Eric

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I've never heard anyone use "Deprecated" in talking about code. I assumed he was trying (unsuccessfully) to make a joke.

Depricate means to make fun of, it's not applicable to development. Depreciate is.

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[quote=“ceebeee_1”, post:15, topic: 736828]
I’ve never heard anyone use “Deprecated” in talking about code. I assumed he was trying (unsuccessfully) to make a joke.

Depricate means to make fun of, it’s not applicable to development. Depreciate is.
[/quote]
“Deprecated” is the common term used to indicate code is out-dated (but not yet removed) and anything using that code should be updated to something more recent before it is actually removed.

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/9208091/the-difference-between-deprecated-depreciated-and-obsolete/9208164

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"Depreciate" means "decline in value"; it's not really applicable, or rather I'd rather asset store stuff not depreciate (any more than it already has). ;)

--Eric

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@hippocoder can we sticky this? This is a great thread, needs to be seen.

Also, abandon, deprecate, or delete is a fair bit better word to use, as depreciate can be confusing for some people, as the usage here in the title is very much unconventional, and unusual.

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[quote=“MostHated”, post:13, topic: 736828]
While we are on this I wish devs would do this, not only ones that have been officially deprecated, but assets in which they either have flat-out said they no longer plan to support or update it, or where the devs just one day up and disappeared, yet still leave it on the asset store for sale in which poor unsuspecting people end up buying randomly down the road. A few come to mind such as.

https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/tools/particles-effects/zone-controller-pro-53632
(he said on the forums he just doesn’t have time for it anymore and won’t be supporting / updating)

and

https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/tools/modeling/mesh-combine-studio-101956
(As far as I know, the devs of this and several other assets fell off the face of the earth)
[/quote]

FWIW, MCS, Terrain Composer2, World Composer, etc. should all be getting updates and support again, now. Check the threads.

IDK about the Horizon[ON] and other kits by the associated developer though.

[quote=“Flurgle”, post:18, topic: 736828]
@hippocoder can we sticky this? This is a great thread, needs to be seen.

Also, abandon, deprecate, or delete is a fair bit better word to use, as depreciate can be confusing for some people, as the usage here in the title is very much unconventional, and unusual.
[/quote]
Please talk to other mods or admin about stickies, I don’t feel I have the right to sticky my own post, due to morals I suppose.

(And yes I fixed my naughty grammar)

3 Likes