The screenshots for Lord of the Rings: Gollum were technically our first glimpse at what next generation games on the Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X consoles will look like — but today, Epic Games blew away expectations with its latest iteration of the Unreal Engine, Unreal Engine 5.
The Unreal Engine 5 “Lumen in the Land of Nanite” demo, running in real-time on the Playstation 5, showcased what Epic Games stressed as their main goals: “achiev[ing] photorealism on par with movie CG and real life, and [putting] it within practical reach of development teams of all sizes through highly productive tools and content libraries,” according to the official Unreal Engine website.
Some of the most impressive features of the new Unreal Engine 5 include using movie assets that consist of hundreds of millions or billions of polygons; a new, dynamic global illumination solution called Lumen and no pop-ins or level of detail graphics courtesy of Nanite, “virtualized micropolygon geometry [which] frees artists to create as much geometric detail as the eye can see.”
To coincide with the Unreal Engine 5 release, Epic Games’ Fortnite will be a launch title on the Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X, utilizing the brand-new engine of course.
Unreal Engine 5 should be available in preview in early 2021, and in full release late in 2021, supporting next-generation consoles, current-generation consoles, PC, Mac, iOS, and Android.