Unreal Engine 5 is now available in early access for game developers. Epic Games has introduced a new version of its engine, detailing some of its key features.

Epic Games made the announcement on May 26 on Unreal Engine’s official website. According to the company, Unreal Engine 5 is “not production-ready,” but developers already can get their hands on the technology.

Here are some of the engine’s new features:

  • Nanite, a virtualized micropolygon geometry system, allows developers to create a “massive amounts of geometric detail.” According to Epic Games, this technology let you import heavy models and scans into a real-time 3D scene without a noticeable loss of fidelity;
  • Lumen, a fully dynamic global illumination solution, allows developers to create realistic scenes where indirect lighting adapts on the fly to changes to direct lighting or geometry;
  • World Partition, a system that simplifies the process of working with open worlds and allows you to stream only the necessary cells. Another technology, Data Layers, will help developers create many variations of the same world (for example, daytime and nighttime versions);
  • Unreal Engine 5 also has some improvements in animation and sound design, as well as a new UI of the UE editor.

Some studios have already started developing new games on Unreal Engine. The list of upcoming titles includes Hellblade 2 and new projects from The Coalition and inXile. Epic Games will also ship Fortnite on Unreal Engine 5 soon.

The official release for Unreal Engine 5 is set for early 2022. You can find more information about it here.

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