14 May 2020 10:35

Geoff Keighley Unreal Engine 5

Epic has published a video that shows off the capabilities of its new Unreal Engine 5 running in real-time on a Sony PlayStation 5. The games engine and publishing company says it designed UE5 "to achieve photorealism on par with movie CG and real life." Two key technologies have enabled what appears to be a leap forward in this full version number upgrade to Unreal Engine - Epic's 'Nanite' and 'Lumen'. I've embedded the Unreal Engine 5 reveal video directly above for your convenience. It is nine minutes long but is definitely worth watching through. The visuals and audio are captivating and Epic Technical Director of Graphics Brian Karis and Special Projects Art Director Jerome Platteaux talk you through the video, explaining the achievements of the UE5 team during pertinent moments / scenes.

Remember, the 'Lumen in the Land of Nanite' video is showcasing real-time rendering of a next-gen videogame like environment. As well as Epic's new 'Nanite' and 'Lumen' tech, UE5 uses next-gen features already available in UE 4.25, including; Niagara VFX improvements, Chaos physics and destruction, animation system enhancements, and several audio advancements. Nanite This is Epic's tech for virtualized micropolygon geometry. According to the developers Nanite lifts restrictions upon designers as it allows them to directly bring in "anything from ZBrush sculpts to photogrammetry scans to CAD data—and it just works". During the video commentary you will hear Brian Kamris mention the triangle counts in various scenes.

"Nanite geometry is streamed and scaled in real time so there are no more polygon count budgets, polygon memory budgets, or draw count budgets; there is no need to bake details to normal maps or manually author LODs; and there is no loss in quality," asserts Epic. To demonstrate the tech prowess of UE5 on a PS5, the video shows a scene with a Z-Brush created statue with 33 million triangles and 8K textures. Shortly after that the game character enters a room with nearly 500 of these same statues situated in the environment, all at max quality. Lumen Lumen is a "fully dynamic global illumination solution that immediately reacts to scene and light changes". In the video you will see light sources in complex scenes manipulated, the effects on the environment, and even things like cockroaches running for cover out of the beam of a torch.

HEXUS recently wrote about Unreal Engine 4.25 ray-tracing features on PC, and that engine becoming ready for next gen consoles like the aforementioned PlayStation 5, as well as Microsoft's Xbox Series X. UE5 isn't going to knock UE 4.25 off its perch before it has even got comfortable. The next major point version of the Unreal Engine will only start to become available in preview from early 2021, with a full release later in the year. However, Epic is wisely designing with forward compatibility, so you can get started with next-gen development now in UE4 and move your projects to UE5 when ready. Some people might have been disappointed with Microsoft's 20/20 real-time gaming demo showcase, showing upcoming titles running on the Xbox Series X, but the UE5 demo instils new hope for the next-gen consoles. Reviews, News, CPU, GPU, Articles, Columns, Other "or" search relation. 5G, Accessory, AMD, Android, Apple, ARM, Audio, Bay Trail, Business, Cannon Lake, Charts, Chinese Tech, Chromebook, Coffee Lake, Comet Lake, Console, Convertible / 2-in-1, Cryptocurrency, Cyberlaw, Deal, Desktop, Fail, Foldable, Gadget, Galaxy Note, Galaxy S, Gamecheck, Gaming, Geforce, Google Nexus / Pixel, How To, Ice Lake, Internet of Things (IoT), iOS, iPad Pro, iPhone, Kaby Lake, Lakefield, Laptop, Linux / Unix, MacBook, Mini PC, Monitor, MSI, OnePlus, Opinion, Phablet, Project Athena, Renoir, Review Snippet, Rocket Lake, Rumor, Ryzen (Zen), Security, Smart Home, Smartphone, Smartwatch, Software, Storage, Tablet, ThinkPad, Thunderbolt, Tiger Lake, Touchscreen, Ultrabook, Virtual Reality (VR) / Augmented Reality (AR), Wearable, Whiskey Lake, Windows, Workstation, XPS, Zen 3 (Vermeer) Ticker The Xbox Series X game footage unveiled by Microsoft last week was quite underwhelming as far as next gen graphics go. Sony, on the other hand, only unveiled very little PS5 footage, including a trailer for Godfall (which is not an exclusive, as it will be available for PC, as well). Godfall is still under development using Unreal Engine 4, and while it looks good, it is not exactly screaming next gen since UE4 has been around for 8 years now. While it is still unclear when exactly we are going to see more PS5 game demos, it so happens that the guys behind Unreal Engine at Epic Games have just unveiled the fifth version that will be available for all platforms including next gen consoles, and the UE5 tech demo itself appears to be running on PS5, so we are basically getting an in depth PS5 tech demo without any actual game footage. Yes, the tech will be available on Xbox Series X, as well, but Epic Games chose to showcase UE5 on the PS5 for some reason. Epic Games specifically states that the goal of UE5 is to help game developers achieve photorealism on par with movie CG and even real life. Quite a bold statement, but, from what we can see in the new tech demo, those goals might not be that far-fetched. This will be facilitated through two revolutionary technologies called Nanite and Lumen. Nanite allows artists to virtually infinite details via virtualized micropolygon geometry comprising hundreds of millions or billions of polygons (basically the size of a pixel or even smaller) can be imported directly into UE5 with no performance limitations. Artists can now import highly complex ZBrush models, photogrammetry scans or detailed CAD data without worrying about polygon count budgets, polygon memory budgets or draw count budgets. Say goodbye to normal maps with baked details and manually authored LODs. All this allows UE5 to render over 16 billion triangles in one of the more complex demo scenes, while the tech demo itself contains hundreds of billions of triangles. Lumen is handling the new advanced lighting system and integrates a fully dynamic global illumination solution that immediately reacts to scene and light changes. The advanced ray tracing engine "renders diffuse interreflection with infinite bounces and indirect specular reflections in huge, detailed environments, at scales ranging from kilometers to millimeters." One of the biggest advantages of Lumen is that it "erases the need to wait for lightmap bakes to finish and to author light map UVs—a huge time savings when an artist can move a light inside the Unreal Editor and lighting looks the same as when the game is run on console." UE5 will be fully released in 2021, but until then, game developers can start coding their games in UE4 and later migrate their work to UE5. Additionally, Epic Games also launched the Epic Online Services that allows mixing and matching for services like friend lists, matchmaking, lobbies, achievements, leaderboards and accounts to enable cross-platform gameplay over all seven major platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, Switch, PC, Mac, iOS, and Android. Epic Games has revealed that its stunning-looking PS5 Unreal Engine 5 tech demo was rendering at 1440p for 'most of the time.' PS5 Unreal Engine 5 Tech Demo Details Speaking with Eurogamer, Nick Penwarden, Epic's vice president of engineering, revealed a bunch of details on the demo, confirming that it was utilising dynamic resolution. Interestingly, it does work very well with our dynamic resolution technique as well. So, when GPU load gets high we can lower the screen resolution a bit and then we can adapt to that. In the demo we actually did use dynamic resolution, although it ends up rendering at about 1440p most of the time. Related Content – Unreal Engine 5 PS5 Tech Demo Screenshots Epic unveiled the Unreal Engine 5 yesterday alongside the announcement that Fortnite would also be coming to next-generation consoles in time for launch. In addition, the popular battle royale title will be migrating to the Unreal Engine 5 in mid-2021. The PS5 and Xbox Series X are both due for release in holiday 2020, with no delays expected despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.