Solving the Unknown Item Type Error When Unity Cannot Load a Project

It is not uncommon to encounter an "Unknown Item Type" error when loading unity projects. The error often occurs when you are working with an older version of Unity or if you are opening an existing project into a newer version of Unity. In this post we will take a look at understanding, diagnosing and solving the error.

Diagnosing the "Unknown Item Type" Error

When attempting to open a project within unity, the program will generate an "Unknown Item Type" error message. This message appears when the project files contain data of which the current version of Unity does not know how to parse. Examining the exact error message in the editor's console can give insight into the cause of the error.

Sourcing the Problem

When trying to resolve the unknown item type error, you must ask "where is this data coming from and what format is it in?". If the project is using a package from the Asset Store, the Unity editor may be having difficulty with the latest built version of the package data. The next step would be to see if a newer version of the package is available or if an older version is compatible with any data format updates.

Update Unity

If the project is working with an older version of Unity, consider updating the version of Unity to the latest version available. This may resolve the issue if Unity is unable to parse data due to a program version discrepancy. Once the latest version of Unity is installed, be sure to open the project with the same version.

Convert Assets

If neither package updates or a Unity version update resolves the issue, the last option is to try converting all the assets from the project. Converting assets may require the use of third party software, but it is worth researching, as this can potentially solve the issue. Once all the assets have been converted, the project can then be loaded without any compatibility issues.


Q1: How do I find the Unknown Item Type Error in the editor's console?

A1: To find the error message in the editor's console, you can click on the "Output" tab in the editor's console and scroll down until you find the error message.

Q2: What are some common causes of the "Unknown Item Type" Error?

A2: Common causes of the error include incompatible version of unity, outdated packages or incompatible asset format.

Q3: What third-party software can be used to convert asset?

A3: Popular software solutions include FBX Converter, Open3D Model, Autodesk Maya, and Blender.

Q4: After converting assets, how do I verify if the project can be loaded?

A4: After converting assets, you should ensure that the project is opened with the same version of Unity. This can help ensure that the project does not generate any additional compatibility errors.

Q5: Are there any other solutions for the "Unknown Item Type" Error?

A5: If none of the solutions mentioned above help, you may need to contact technical support from the package maker or from Unity itself. They can offer more insight into the error and may provide solutions that are unique to your particular project.

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