Nordic Game 2015 partner Intel has some advice for developers looking to add x86 support to Android apps using the Unity game engine:
Enabling existing Unity ARM-based Android SDK games with native x86 support is straightforward and easy. This article walks through the steps to produce a fat APK that includes both x86 and ARM libraries from within the latest Unity 4 or Unity 5 versions.
Intel and Unity are working together to bring x86 Android functionality to an upcoming public release of Unity 4.6 and Unity 5. We’ll post an update here when the release goes live.
If you’d like early access or version 4.5.4, please contact your Intel account manager.
Adding Android Native x86 Support
In addition to ARM, Unity now provides developers with native x86 support. When you create an Android build using Unity 4 or Unity 5, it automatically creates a fat APK containing both x86 and ARM libraries.
Best practice: Follow Unity programming practices to ensure projects are kept up to date and your Unity software version is the latest. Android SDK and NDK must also be updated to ensure full compatibility.
With your project open, click File > Build Settings to open “Build Settings” (Figure 1).
Within “Build Settings”, ensure “Android” is selected, then click “Build” (Figure 2).
After clicking “Build”, specify the save location.
Figure 1. “Build Settings” within the file drop-down menu. Figure 2. “Build Settings”: Ensure “Android” is selected, then click “Build”.
That’s it! Your APK now has native x86 support.
With the use of the both the newest Unity gaming engine and Android SDK/NDK, developers have support for both X86 and ARM concurrently in a fat APK. The resultant APK contains both x86 and ARM libraries, where upon download the device will select which library is applicable for its hardware type.
Please note that the fat APK size will have a very small size increase unless full debug information is included. You can make sure that full debug information is NOT included by verifying that “Development Build” is not selected in the build settings section.
As you just saw, it’s easy to create Android-based games for the x86 platform using the latest version of Unity 4 or Unity 5. Native x86 support will help your apps have better performance and faster load times.
For additional support, a special Unity x86 developer page is available here.