The Unreal Engine is essentially a game engine developed by Epic Games, first showcased in the 1998 first-person shooter game Unreal. Although primarily developed for first-person shooters, it has been successfully used in a variety of other genres, including stealth, MMORPGs, and other RPGs. With its code written in C++, the Unreal Engine features a high degree of portability and is a tool used by many game developers today. Continue reading for more impressive tech demos and scenes.
5. Lake Scene
One of the major features planned for UE4 was real-time global illumination using voxel cone tracing, eliminating pre-computed lighting. However, this feature has been replaced with a similar but less computationally-expensive algorithm prior to release for all platforms including the PC because of performance concerns on next-generation consoles.
4. Penthouse Suite Interior
UE4 also includes new developer features to reduce iteration time, and allows updating of C++ code while the engine is running. The new “Blueprint” visual scripting system allows for rapid development of game logic without using C++, and includes live debugging. The result is reduced iteration time, and less of a divide between technical artists, designers, and programmers.
3. Sonic The Hedgehog
Epic released Unreal Engine 4 to schools and universities for free, including personal copies for students enrolled in accredited video game development, computer science, art, architecture, simulation, and visualization programs.
2. The Cave
On February 19, 2015, Epic launched Unreal Dev Grants, a $5,000,000 development fund designed to provide financial grants to innovative projects being built with Unreal Engine 4. Awards range from $5,000 to $50,000, with no strings attached: developers and artists own their IP and are free to publish however they wish, with no restrictions or obligations on the way the funds are used.
1. Loft in London
As of March 2, 2015, Unreal Engine 4 is available to everyone for free, and all future updates will be free. Epic will be issuing a pro-rated refund to people who have paid for Unreal Engine 4 since January 31, 2015. In addition, anyone who has ever paid for an UE4 subscription will receive a $30 credit for the Unreal Engine Marketplace. If projects are released commercially, developers must pay a 5% royalty on gross revenue following the first $3,000 per product, per quarter.