Posts Tagged ‘Unreal Engine 4’
Thank you, Epic. Finally, someone has listened to me. I’ve said for years that games should use automatic C++ hot reload, but everyone’s just copied Gears of War’s reload. Animation retargeting too, very important that for twitch aiming. And streaming video textures mean livestreams should run at 60fps even in 1080p! Unreal Engine 4.5 is the game engine we’ve all been waiting for.
That’s all a load of old tosh, of course, except for the fact that Unreal Engine has now reached version 4.5. It brings a few handy things to speed up development, but you’re probably more interested in prettiness. Don’t worry, it has that too.
At any big gaming conference or expo I’ve been to there’s been a strong dividing line between mainstream and indie. Both are awful labels, but for sake of simplicity: the former fills cavernous halls with booths, music, and major publisher money, while the latter normally finds itself a corner of carefully curated darlings, most featuring sprite graphics and other symbols signalling that the game is made by one person or a small team.
What of single persons or small teams making indie games with the tools of the mainstream? Do developers making oddities within Unreal Engine 4 find they fall between two stalls, and so find no stall at all at gaming conferences? Would they benefit from Epic offering them one of eight spots at this year’s Eurogamer Expo?
Update: It’s Unreal Tournament 2014, an entirely free sequel. Not free-to-play. No microtransactions whatsoever, apparently. Epic will make money by taking cuts from a user-driven mod marketplace. The game is extremely early, and Epic plans to develop it alongside fans.
Original: Epic is about to announce something involving Unreal Tournament. Normally that would mean I’d be typing at you live from some extravagant Epic-rented volcano yacht in the Baltic sea, but not this time. Instead, the mega-developer is broadcasting the announcement to all humans by way of technomagical streaming technology. You can watch below.
I’ve played EVE Valkyrie at so many events that, last time I climbed into its virtual cockpit (GDC), I immediately decided I’d try and break it. Mostly, this entailed me standing up and seeing if my “head” would pass right through the cockpit’s glass, and – much to my surprise and elation – it did. Sadly, I did not immediately die of explosive decompression. Oh well. But I guess what I’m saying is, we really haven’t seen much of this game’s, er, game yet. Just the same tiny war, waged eternally, its cadre of wind-up toy soldiers none-the-wiser. There will be more to it, though. That’s why CCP is bringing on Battlestar Galactica‘s Katee Sackhoff – aka, Starbuck – to voice Valkyrie’s lead pilot in missions. And it’ll all happen in Unreal Engine 4, because the gaming industry has forgotten other engines exist.
Sometimes you want to charge guns, swords, and words a-blazin into a game world and tame the land until Iron Maiden writes a song about you. Other times, you just want to heft your heavy eyelids, sip a light tea, and gently sail through friendly old places made new again. You’ve got a long day ahead of you, but you don’t have to venture out into the cruel sadlands of life just yet. Remember better days. Here, let me help with videos of the original BioShock and Deus Ex: Human Revolution re-realized in Unreal Engine 4. They’re quite a sight.
Dead Crusade is a game that aims to make two great tastes go great together. I mean, crusades have historically ended well, and who could forget all the wonderful times that were had in spite of the Black Death ravaging the European countryside and taking an estimated 75-200 million people? Now, while Dead Crusade uses that insidious murder plague as a backdrop for co-op first-or-third-person hack ‘n’ slashing, I actually think the Black Death would make for a perfect videogame main character. Finally, a story-justified reason for taking more lives than there are grains of sand in the sky or stars on a beach. Trailer for not that (but still an interesting-ish looking game) below.
As Epic told me during GDC, sugar-cereal-colored buildy blaster Fortnite isn’t fourscore feet under, as a) that’d be total overkill and b) it’s doing just fine. After a lengthy period of radio silence, the Unreal Engine mega-maven has finally seen fit to re-reveal the game and begin taking sign-ups for an upcoming alpha. The biggest (noticeable) change so far? Fortnite is now officially free-to-play.
Before GDC, Epic’s ubiquitous Unreal Engine was a walled garden. But that all changed when company president Johnny Epic waded into the conference crowd while bellowing, “You get an Unreal Engine and YOU get an Unreal Engine” to everyone in attendance. And then he chainsawed a life-size replica of traditional gaming industry business models in half. Or at least, that’s how I like to imagine it happened. I was asleep while John took the bullet of waking up at Ungodly O’ Clock to attend Epic’s presser. The takeaway, however, was obvious: Epic is trying to make its engine more accessible to everyone – full-time developers, part-time indies, and no-time hobbyists alike. I asked Epic engine GM Ray Davis how the studio plans to achieve that (hint: Minecraft) and also about where Fortnite‘s gone because I pretty much had to.
Who’d have thought game engines could be so competitive? We need Jesse ‘The Body’ Ventura commenting on all this news from GDC. Following on from yesterday’s announcement that Epic will be releasing Unreal 4 on subscription for $19 per month plus a 5% share of the gross profits, Crytek has responded by announcing that their CryEngine will also be available on subscription, for the cryminally low price of $9.90 per month and no cuts from the profits. Is this the engine equivalent of Hulking up?
Update: Now with trailer.
Epic has announced today that Unreal Engine 4 is to dramatically change its licensing model. From now on anyone can subscribe to Unreal Engine 4 for $19 a month, and then release those games commercially for a 5% gross revenue share with the developer. This means that indies no longer need to stick with the Unreal Development Kit, but get the entire engine at what appears an affordable price. And on top of that, they’re releasing the source code to Github. All from 9.30 PT today.
Our previous look at the Unreal Engine 4 in action was the hyper-dramatic Infiltrator demo. It was sci-fi, it was 50 bajillion shades of grey, it was quite a spectacular piece of machinima that I totally want to play. This time around, there’s almost no action or budget: just a couple of members of the development team talking about the engine’s material layering capabilities. Where before the soundtrack was dramatic and swelling, here it’s a dude saying things like: “I can see that adds a lot of flexibility to the art pipeline.” Games!
Read the rest of this entry »
RPS Feature Zero Shades Of Grimdark Gray
Generally speaking, Epic’s a company that likes to put its best foot forward. When it debuts a new game or engine, everything’s polished to a gloriously gritty sheen – even if a look behind the curtain tells an entirely different tale. So Fortnite‘s PAX presentation was – for many reasons – a strong reminder that the crayola-colored survivor is Different. It began, for instance, with Tanya Jessen, Cliff Bleszinski, and co running us through very early Unreal Engine 3 prototypes of Fortnite’s combat – complete with desolate checker box backgrounds and near-superheroic levels of Aliasing-O-Vision. But that’s the point: Epic considers its construction-centric opus a “living project,” and it wants fans in on the ground floor.