Unreal Engine is becoming the industry-leading software aimed at helping creators build incredible visual experiences for the global audience. In the international gaming community, this game engine is famous for superb graphics, top-notch performance, high-quality VFX support, Metahuman character generator, global illumination technology, etc.
As these and many other technical solutions from Epic Games, the engine’s owner, gain traction, each present-day Unreal Engine game development company adjusts its workflow to adapt to the new reality. With the 5th generation of Unreal Engine, you can do real magic. In this reading, you’ll learn about the reasons to opt for UE instead of other engines.
What Does Unreal Engine Have in Store?
As one of the most widespread game engines of all time, Unreal is used in various industries, including cinematography, 3D visualization, architecture design, VR simulators, and, of course, game development. Among the most trending and widely discussed features of Unreal Engine, you should be aware of the following:
- Premium-looking visuals
Just like books are often judged by their covers, players make their first impressions about a game within a couple of first seconds while watching the gameplay. That’s why quality graphics are the essential component of any modern AA or AAA game. Moreover, a trend toward hyper-realism only proves this notion, inasmuch as players are more often fond of realistic characters than ever.
- Lumen global lighting system
This feature is undoubtedly more valuable for game developers than players themselves because this innovative technology facilitates a smoother and more straightforward workflow. You won’t need to bake your lighting to optimize the system anymore. Instead, you have an entirely dynamic global illumination with realistic reflections working in a real-time mode already built into your project.
- Virtual Shadow Maps & World Partition Tool
With the new shadow mapping method from UE5, you can increase shadow resolution and ensure incredibly detailed geometry without having to sacrifice the frame rate. The same goes for the World Partition Tool, which allows you to produce large-scale maps without splitting them into smaller bits because your whole virtual world can now be stored in a single file, irrespective of its size. So the editing and level design process are now much more manageable.
As Unreal Engine 5’s new virtualized geometry system, Nanite relieves your workload significantly thanks to a new internal mesh format whose data is compressed yet supporting a high level of detail. If you refer to LOD transitions, the drop in overall quality is insignificant, but optimization is beyond compare, let alone how many budgets are saved on a daily basis for projects whose managers take advantage of Nanite.
Since realism is the new milestone in game development, players are expecting ultra-realistic characters that resemble real human beings as well as don’t invoke the effect of an uncanny valley. With this technology onboard, you can create unique characters as if it were a character creation tool inside Elden Ring or Demon’s Souls Remake, yet featuring far more settings as well as details to tweak.
How to Know that You Need to Switch to Unreal Engine?
Whether it’s your first time developing a video game or you are considering changing the platform from, say, Unity to a new one, there’s good news for you. In both cases, you can opt for Unreal Engine 5 for a high number of reasons, including free usage until your project starts generating considerable revenue, availability of Unreal developers on the recruitment market, and the like. In addition to the features mentioned above, you may need to know more.
Here’s the checklist to complete if you are considering switching to Unreal Engine 5:
- you have a team of capable Unreal developers (if not, address an outsourcing company, and they will provide you with them on demand);
- you desire to develop an AA or AAA game for multiple platforms, including PC, console, etc. (because the game engine’s capabilities may be overwhelming for small-scale or mobile projects);
- you’d like to target a global audience of gamers who prefer photorealism;
- you have a high budget allocated for your game project (since Unreal Engine game development is more complicated and time-consuming than compared to other platforms like Unity);
- you can afford to spend more time on your project but make it more polished and optimized.
In any event, prioritizing Unreal Engine 5 over its alternatives must be a research-based and thought-out decision. Therefore, you may want to consider asking for a professional consultation or piece of advice from a reliable game development company.