An entire Xbox 360 character fits in the eyelashes of an Unreal Engine 5 character
Gears 5 developer The Coalition has come up with a new Unreal Engine 5 tech demo optimized for the Xbox Series X. The short “Alpha Point” video was shown at a GDC conference and has yet to be released. posted publicly, but there is a screenshot above. This is still the case for the theme of ruined ruins. I miss the sci-fi tech demos of the 2010s, but UE5 makes some nice rocks.
The demo is very short: ruins, floating diamond thing, that’s all. I will incorporate it into this post whenever it gets uploaded somewhere or, if no one succeeds, I will rip it out of the GDC discussion, but for now I’m trying to avoid compressing a stream that is already compressed just to show you a few seconds of rendering. As you can see in the still I picked up below, it doesn’t tell us much that we didn’t already know, but it does have some nice rocks in it.
During the GDC conference where the demo debuted, Coalition Technical Director Kate Rayner said Unreal Engine 5 game development was still “very early”, but this demo was a good opportunity to the Microsoft-owned studio to “blow up the tires” and collaborate with Epic Optimization on Xbox.
Alpha Point was originally created with Unreal Engine 4 – where it was inserted into the editor – and then moved to UE5 and finished. According to Coalition technical art director Colin Penty, most of the demo’s assets consist of 300,000 to 500,000 triangles, 15 times the number of triangles in the average asset of Gears 5, a game released in 2019. The studio has also worked with millions of triangular assets, Penty said, but parts of the development process get “too painful” with assets this large. Penty also noted some of the limitations of the Nanite geometry technology used for ultra-complex assets. It doesn’t currently do translucency, for example, so most of the foliage in the demo doesn’t use it.
While they can be dynamically lit with the UE5’s Lumen system, it seems clear that nanite-fueled rocks are pretty static right now – maybe that’s why we keep seeing rocks in the first place. . In one Nanite presentation video, Epic said the technology currently does not support non-rigid warping and world position shifting, an Unreal Engine feature used for ambient animations like grass sway.
Right now, the capabilities of the UE5 are ironically reminiscent of the unreal claims of the old “endless detail” 3D rendering demos that popped up from time to time on YouTube. I spoke to Epic CEO Tim Sweeney in 2016. Among other things, he was then convinced that by 2036 “we will have such a sophisticated rendering of physical objects that you will have a hard time distinguishing these. objects of reality. ”
That seems like a pretty safe prediction at the levels of detail we’re seeing now. Penty also featured a brief UE5 character rendering demo, noting the ridiculously high number of polychromes in the hair, which is handled by Unreal Engine’s Groom system.
âA funny statistic I was thinking about, with 3,500 triangle eyelashes: that’s sort of the budget of an entire Xbox 360 character, now contained in the eyelashes of one of those characters,â Penty said. .
He concluded by saying that he thought UE5 games would be “amazing” on the Xbox Series X / S consoles.
I guess it’s hard to fault The Coalition, a Microsoft studio, for focusing on the console here. Although it was supposed to be internal only at first, Alpha Point is sort of Microsoft’s answer to Unreal Engine 5’s first demo, designed for the PlayStation 5. For better or worse, the latest PlayStation and Xbox still sets the standard for consumer rendering power.
For comparison to your specs, Alpha Point runs at 46 fps on an Xbox Series X with 4K display resolution. I say display resolution because the actual render resolution was set to 50% or higher and increased to 4K using Epic’s super temporal resolution. So you can render around 46 fps at 1440p (but not 4K) with PC hardware comparable to an Xbox Series X. Or you can also enable super time resolution, or possibly DLSS, or some other upconverter.
Like Nvidia’s DLSS technology, Temporal Super Resolution tries to increase the resolution of an image without losing quality. This means that a game can be rendered in 1080p and then upscaled to 4K and still look like it belongs there, as even high-end graphics cards struggle to render certain scenes directly in 4K. Penty said the UE5’s TSR scaling provides “incredible results” when going from 1080p to 4K.
As for The Coalition’s next game, whatever it is, you can browse the tech demo for clues when it’s available, but Penty said Alpha Point’s assets were designed for Alpha Point and are not from a game project, and that The Coalition is not announcing a match at GDC. So these are really just pebbles, I’m afraid.