Neon Challenge

Create a futuristic real-time environment for a chance to win $20,000!
I agree to the Rules and Conditions.
Dec 1 - Jan 16 2018

With $20,000 on the line what real-time environment scene can you create using the power of Unity and your artistic skills?

Welcome to the first ever Unity Connect Challenge hosted and sponsored by Unity Technologies, the Neon Challenge! By submitting, you’ll be agreeing to not only the Neon Challenge terms of service, but you’ll also be required to login using your UnityID. But don't worry! Click "Upload Your Project" to start your submission now -- you'll have the entire length of the contest to edit it and others can see your submission in progress.

Neon Challenge

At Unite Austin we revealed the making of Neon, a real-time environment scene created by the director of ADAM Episode 1, Veselin Efremov, over the course of a weekend. It was composed of models from the Unity Asset Store and made with powerful artist-friendly tools such as Cinemachine, Timeline, and Unity’s Post Processing Stack. This scene illustrates the power of Unity and the Asset Store for rapid visual prototyping, showing how teams and individual creators across the globe can turn their ideas into scenes in the span of days rather than weeks.
Now we want to see what our talented community of creators is capable of, which is why we’re excited to announce the launch of the Neon Challenge. We also have a total prize pool of over $30,000 with a grand prize of $20,000 and a ticket to a Unite conference in 2018 for the first place winner! The contest will run live from Dec 1, 2017 to Jan 15, 2018.

Theme: A New World

In Neon, you find a futuristic urban center in a cyberpunk style complete with humanoid inhabitants and flying vehicles. For the Neon Challenge, we’re challenging creators to think of a new world on Earth or even in the farthest reaches of space. Imagine a futuristic society with untold technological advances, along with the environments and inhabitants they may hold. Let your creativity run wild. Think of the theme within a broad category of science fiction rather than strictly cyberpunk.
We’re providing you some amazing futuristic concept art from the Art Director of ADAM Episode I, Georgi Simeonov, to inspire your production work. Refer to the link below for the full list of concept art available for the contest, several examples are shown below. Feel free to create your scenes based on this art or create a scene based on your own original idea.
Neon Challenge Concept Art - See all of the provided concept art for the challenge here

Challenge Brief

Your submission will require you to create one (1) futuristic game environment, rendered in Unity, which will be represented as a video in your final submission. The video must show your environment scene in real-time and must show multiple views and close-ups.
As part of your submission you will need to submit an article with a callout sheet and description of your production process. We want you to be able to share your knowledge and techniques with the greater Unity community along with the narrative of your scene that you're trying to tell. We also want to know about the creative ways you leveraged the Unity Asset Store, Cinemachine, Timeline, Post Processing Stack within your scene.
You will need to include (1) a video of your environment uploaded to a video platform (1080 minimum resolution), YouTube is preferred, if possible. (2) Images/screenshots of work-in-progress shots as well as any custom assets and Asset Store assets you used in your scene. (3) making-of article with an overview of the production process from concept to your final video. Make sure to credit the concept art you based your scene on. Use this article as a reference for your submission: Building a real-time environment with Unity and the Asset Store.
You can build the scene using any assets you create as well as anything from the Asset Store. Make sure to add GIF's, images, screenshots, and video of your work!
And don't forget you can showcase models you've created and even your final scene using Sketchfab. Simply follow this guide, upload your models or scene, and embed the Sketchfab link directly in your submission.


  • One (1) completed game environment created in Unity 2017.1, Unity 2017.2, or Unity 2017.3 which utilizes the Unity Asset Store and uses Cinemachine, Timeline, and the Post Processing Stack (v1 or v2).
  • One (1) ‘making of’ submission with a callout sheet which will include:
  • One (1) embedded final scene video shown at minimum 1080 resolution uploaded to a public video platform.
  • An overview of your entire creation process including: introduction to your team, narrative inspiration, scene conceptualization, material creation, production process, and post-production.
  • An explanation of how the Asset Store, Cinemachine, Timeline, and the Post Processing Stack were used in your scene.
  • Work-in-progress images, GIF's, and video and final list as any free or paid assets used from the Asset Store.
  • Work-in-progress media highlighting all custom created assets. We recommend using Sketchfab for any custom models or scene samples, simply upload any of your models and embed the link directly in your submission.

Judging Criteria

Submissions will be judged based on composition, creativity, and execution. We’re looking for cohesive scenes which are able evoke a clear visual narrative. Successful submissions will leverage Unity’s powerful cinematic tools alongside detailed environments, thematic music, and high-quality models to bring to life a scene to life.

Awards and Prizes

The grand prize and second prize categories are selected by a group of judges. The community awards will be selected by the community based on the number of likes on the submission. The total prize package of all prizes is $31,650.
One (1) grand prize winner selected by judges (estimated retail value of $20,400)
  • $20,000 cash
  • One ticket to Unite EU or Unite US in 2018 ($400)
Two (2) second prize winners selected by judges (estimated retail value of $6,800)
  • $3,000 cash
  • One ticket to Unite EU or Unite US in 2018 ($400)
Three (3) community award winners selected by the community (estimated retail value of $3,450)
  • $1,000 cash
  • Unity swag bundle ($150)
  • Community winners will be selected based on the number of likes on their submission.
Five (5) honorable mentions selected by judges (estimated retail value of $1,000)
  • $200 Asset Store vouchers

Challenge Rules

The scene must be produced and submitted between 00:01 AM PT December 1, 2017 and Jan 15, 2018 23:59 PT on the Neon Challenge submission page on Unity Connect.
Your environment scene can be composed of models and environments you have created as well as any additional free or paid assets from the Unity Asset Store. All character and environment art associated to the Adam demo are excluded from use in this contest. Use of the volumetric lighting from the Adam demo is acceptable.
Content from other marketplaces can be used as long as you have the proper rights to use these assets. Your scene should based on the theme provided. The scene must also be created using Unity 2017.1, 2017.2, or 2017.3. You also must implement Cinemachine, Timeline, and the Post Processing Stack within your scene.
Individual submissions and team submissions are ineligible for prizes from the following cou
Note: All character and environment art associated to the Adam demo are excluded from use in this contest.
Concept Art Use
We’ve provided concept art Georgi Simeonov, to inspire your scenes. Feel free to use any of these pieces in your work. Environments can also be based off your own original idea.
Winners Announcements
All winners will be announced on Unity Connect and the Unity blog in March during GDC 2018.
You must detail your production from start to finish in your submission. Include images and descriptions of how Asset Store assets, Cinemachine, Timeline, and Post Processing Stack were used and shown in the scene.
Tackle the challenge solo or feel free to work with other team members on the project. All team members must be added as contributors on the project, must have Unity Connect profiles, and should be properly attributed in your submission as contributors.

Guide to Entry

Getting Started
  1. Choose a piece of concept art on this showcase to inspire your production work on or base it off your own original idea which fits the challenge theme.
  2. Download Unity here.
  3. Cinemachine and Post Processing Stack (Download v1 from Asset Store or v2 from Github)
  4. Download any useful assets from the Asset Store. List of free assets here and Neon Challenge recommended assets here.
  5. Check out the Resources section below for useful tutorials and documentation to get you familiar with Unity's features.
  6. Start building your scene!
  7. Once finished, download and use Unity Recorder (recommended) to record your final scene or otherwise we recommend the use of in-editor video capture tools on the Unity Asset Store.
  8. Edit your video and =upload it to a public video platform (i.e. YouTube, Vimeo).
  1. Go to
  2. Login using your Unity ID credentials.
  3. If you don’t have a Unity ID, please create one.
  4. If you have to create a Unity ID, you will have to fill out a form and verify your email.
  5. Once finished you’ll be ready to use Connect.
  6. Please fill your profile as completely as possible (profile photo, cover photo, etc.)
  7. Remember you need a nearly fleshed out profile in order to be eligible! (at least 80%)
Final Submission - Submit Project
  1. Go to
  2. Click Submit.
  3. Add Project Name.
  4. Embed a public video of your final scene at the start of your submission.
  5. Add details of your entire production process from concept to final production. Include explanations of how Cinemachine, Timeline, Post Processing Stack, and any assets from the Unity Asset Store were used in the scene. Topics to consider discussing: terrain, materials, lighting, animation, cameras, and post processing,
  6. Add work-in-progress images, GIFs, and video to your submission.
  7. Add tags and tag all uploaded content with #NeonChallenge.
  8. Add any contributors who helped you along the way.
  9. Publish!
  10. Remember to share your submission on social media. The (3) community awards ($1,000 each) are determined by the most likes on your project!


We’ve listed all of the tools and resources you need to start creating for the Neon Challenge below.
Key Downloads
  • Unity - The most recent version of Unity. Download
  • Cinemachine - A powerful, easy-to-use procedural camera system. Download
  • Post Processing Stack - An all-in-one post process effects pipeline. Download
  • Timeline - Included in the Unity editor, a tool for creating cinematic content and gameplay sequences. Read More
  • Unity Asset Store - A catalog of over 40K assets and tools. Explore to find useful models, tools, and plugins to help you build your scene. See all assets. See Neon Challenge recommended assets.
  • Unity Recorder - Unity Recorder captures video and images during gameplay and records to various media formats. Download
  • Unity User Manual - Documentation
  • Cinemachine - Documentation
  • Timeline - Documentation
  • Post Processing Stack- Documentation
Resource Pages
  • Unity Learn - Core resources for learning Unity including documentation, tutorials, and webinar courses.
  • Unity for Artists and Animators - A collection of resources and learning material for Artist and Animators.
Official Unity Video Tutorials
  1. Cinemachine, Timeline, and Post Processing Stack Tutorial
  2. Getting Started With Timeline
  3. Using Cinemachine: Post Processing
  4. Using Cinemachine: Track and Dolly
  5. Using Cinemachine: FreeLook Camera
  6. Using Cinemachine: State Driven Cameras
Community Tutorials
  • Intro to Timeline by Brackeys
  • Intro to Cinemachine by Brackeys
Contest Judges
Timoni West - Principal Designer, Unity Labs
Adam Myhill - Head of Cinematics
Georgi Simeonov - Production Designer


I want to submit but my project isn't final - what should I do?
Feel free to upload your project now in any state. You'll have the entire length of the challenge to update it to it's final status.
Am I eligible to participate?
This Contest is open to residents worldwide excluding residents of: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria due U.S. Export regulations and residents of Quebec, Canada; Brazil; and Italy. For teams with any members in these countries, your entire team would be inelgible to win a prize.
Does it matter what version of Unity I use?
To be eligible to win and to leverage the necessary features, you must use Unity 2017.1, Unity 2017.2, or Unity 2017.3 to create your scene.
Where do I ask questions about the challenge?
Ask all questions regarding the challenge in the Unity Connect Challenges lobby here.
Where do I learn how to use new features of Unity including Cinemachine, Timeline, and the Post -Processing Stack?
The section titled Learning Resources above contains the basics to getting you started using Unity’s newest features. Check our YouTube for even more learning material to get you familiar with these features.
Can I submit multiple submissions for the challenge?
No, you can only submit one submission to the contest.
Can I work with a team of people on my submission?
Yes, you can work with a team, but you submit the contest by yourself. All team members must be properly attributed in your submission and they must have Unity Connect profiles.
Can my design be based on an existing IP?
No, your work cannot infringe on any existing IP’s rights. Your work can be based on your own original idea or the existing concept art provided specifically for this challenge.
Can we use assets from other online content libraries than Unity Asset Store?
Feel free to utilize assets you’ve purchased in your scene from the Asset Store and other asset libraries as long as you agree that you have the proper rights to use these assets in the challenge.
Do I have to buy an asset from the Unity Asset Store for my scene?
No, you do not need to purchase an asset to enter the contest. However, feel free to use any free or paid assets on the Unity Asset Store to build your scene. Here is a list of free assets from the Unity Asset Store: Free Assets.
Can I use existing assets I’ve purchased from the Unity Asset Store in my scene?
Yes, you can use any mix free and paid assets including ones you already own.
I can’t complete my entry because of a bug, can Unity help?
We currently cannot provided technical support for submissions in progress.
Where can I go if I have questions on the project?
Please visit the Unity Connect Challenges channel for any questions you have regarding the contest or reach out to
What do I need to show in my final submission?
Feel free to showcase your work in progress over the course of the six weeks with dates for each entry. You should cover all stages of your development in written text from conceptualization to your final video. Feel free to include any media showcasing your work including, images, GIF's, and video. For any custom created models, we support Sketchfab embeds directly in your submission. Finally, make sure your final video is at the top of your submission for review when you submit.

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