User Manual


A branch is an isolated line of development. Every checkpoint created belongs to a branch and a series of checkpoints in a branch can track the development of an application or a particular feature. A PlayCanvas project will always have at least one branch, the master branch, and will often have multiple branches. You can merge the changes from one branch into any other branch using the version control panel in the Editor.

Master branch

Every project has a branch called "master" which is always present and cannot be deleted. In most respects this branch is no different from any other branch. However, in some cases (for example, the REST API) the "master" branch will be used as a default if no other branch is specified. A common scenario is to treat the master branch as the current development state of your application; to use another branch for stable releases and still more branches for feature development. However, you should feel free to use or not use the master branch as best suits your needs.

Current branch

For each project you work on you will always have a single branch set to be your current branch. This is the branch that you are actively working on and whenever you open the editor or edit a code file your changes will apply to your current branch.

Creating a new branch

Create branch

To create a branch open the version control panel, select the checkpoint that you wish to start the branch from and choose the "New Branch" option in the checkpoint's drop-down menu.

New branch dialog

You will be asked to name your branch. Try to give your branch a description name like fix-player-bug or refactor-sound-effects. After creating the branch you will automatically be switched to the new branch you just created.

Switching to a branch

Switch branch

To switch branch open the version control panel, select the branch you wish to switch to and choose the "Switch to this branch" option in the branch's drop-down menu.

The editor will reload with your current branch switched to the chosen branch.

Closing a branch

Close branch

It is not possible to delete branches as they are required for future merges. However, if you have completed work on a branch you can close the branch which will remove it from the interface.

To close a branch open the version control panel, select the branch you wish to close and choose the "Close branch" option in the branch's drop-down menu. Note, you cannot close your current branch or the master branch. Switch to a different branch first if you wish to close your current branch.

Close branch dialog

You will be asked to confirm the closing of the branch and you have an option to discard any changes that were made to your branch since you last took a checkpoint. By default, PlayCanvas will save your changes in an additional checkpoint before closing the branch. If you wish to discard these changes you can select the option here. Note, enabling this checkbox will lose any work you have made in the branch since you last made a checkpoint.