Epic Games placate us with nice, shiny graphics

Ian Clements Updated on by

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Graphics, we all love them. Say what you will about preferring the gameplay, when stunning graphics meet with superb gameplay then the result is akin to a nuclear explosion, Resident Evil 4 is sure proof of that. Knowing our love for smooth, shiny surfaces, Epic Games are hard at work on their impressive Unreal3 engine, which will no doubt see use in a huge number of FPS games in the future as well as the game to which it is named for.

Demonstrating the tech and heading three speaker sessions at the GDC, lasting from March 9-11, Epic Games aim to show off integral features of the U3 engine. Among these; Seamless World Support, which allows the creation of virtually unending environments through background management of game levels and assets, basically a final banishment of that ‘fog’ made infamous by FPS’ with limited resources then. Even titles not requiring or using SWS will benefit from memory management techniques, aimed to be used in next-generation console platforms.

Significant improvements will also be demonstrated in physics, terrain editing, lighting, material editing, animation, cinematic creation and particles.

Next up, the new UnrealKismet visual scripting system empowers designers to build and iterate detailed game scenarios and AI behaviors with limited, or even zero, programmer involvement. At best this means we will have Developers spending time on those little, niggling points which often keep a great game from being a classic, at worst it hands over more power to the machine and what other areas may follow? Level design, art, characters? Still, that’s just fearful speculation at this point.