Published: May 13, 2020 8:30:13 pm
Unreal Engine 4 was launched back in 2014 by Epic Games under a subscription model. With the help of which the gaming industry evolved a lot releasing new games that felt very realistic. The game engine since then has been made available for free with its source code being freely available on GitHub. Unreal Engine 4 has powered a lot of popular titles like Batman: Arkham Asylum, Fortnite, Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot and more.
On Wednesday, May 13, Epic Games has finally provided the world with its first look at the next-generation Unreal Engine 5. With it, the company has said that one of its goals is to “achieve photorealism on par with movie CG and real life, and put it within practical reach of development teams of all sizes through highly productive tools and content libraries.”
Unreal Engine 5 was revealed with a real-time demo of the Lumen in the Land of Nanite running on a PlayStation 5. The demo video showcased two of the new core technologies that will debut in Unreal Engine 5, called Nanite and Lumen.
Nanite is a technology with which billions of polygons are imported directly into Unreal Engine. This allows the engine to stream and scale geometric figures in real-time, which helps with no loss in quality. Lumen is a fully dynamic global Illumination solution, which reacts to scene and light changes, that helps makes the games look much more realistic.
Epic Games in a press release stated that “to build large scenes with Nanite geometry technology, Epic’s team made heavy use of the Quixel Megascans library, which provides film-quality objects up to hundreds of millions of polygons.” Due to which the Unreal Engine 5 can support larger and more detailed scenes than previous generations.
Apart from Nanite and Lumen, the video also showcases existing engine systems like Chaos physics and destruction, Niagara VFX, convolution reverb, and ambisonics rendering.
The company has announced that Unreal Engine 5 will be made available in a preview format in early 2021. It will release the full version in late 2021. Till then game developers will be using the Unreal Engine 4.25, which was released on May 5. Unreal Engine 4.25 supports next-generation console platforms from Sony and Microsoft.
Unreal Engine 4.25 comes with forward compatibility. This means that developers using Unreal Engine 4.25 to develop games will be able to move them to Unreal Engine 5 when it is ready.
Apart from showcasing the new gaming engine, Epic Games also announced that it will be waiving its royalties on the first $1 million in gross revenue per title. It states that this will “give game developers an unprecedented advantage over other engine license models.”
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