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Thursday, March 25, 2004
Early Next-Gen Unreal Engine Impressions
9:38 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

As reported earlier, Epic has been showing off the current build of their UnrealEngine3 at the Game Developers Conference currently being held in San Jose, CA. GameSpot got a chance to check out the presentation behind closed doors and has posted impressions of what was seen.

The focus of the demo centers around a cathedral. Besides the usual upgrades to lighting and shadows, a bump in texture detail was also noted:

In fact, the engine does a lot of amazing work with textures. We saw an incredible dragon-like creature, built out of millions of polygons. But even more impressively, you could see the veins and the cracks in its skin to an incredible degree. The textures are so good in fact that it allows Epic to scale down the number of polygons in each creature to create a normal-mapped model with a much more reasonable number of polygons, but losing virtually none of the overall graphical effect.
Also commented on is the developer-friendly toolset, which will allow for drag-and-drop texturing as well as manipulation of the physics of specific objects.

As far as performance goes, GameSpot notes that the demo was running on a 2Ghz AMD CPU on both next generation Nvidia and ATI hardware, and still struggled in a few places.

GameSpot - Unreal Engine 3.0 First Look
Epic Games

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