Unity Technologies has announced the successor to its Unity 4 Engine that is – obviously – called Unity 5. According to the company, Unity 5 supports 64-bit operating systems and comes with a completely overhauled audio system, physical shaders, and advanced real-time lighting.
In addition, Unity 5 supports PhysX 3.3, Unity Cloud ad-sharing network and WebGL.
Unity Technologies and Mozilla have also released a video, showing off the engine running on FireFox.
According to David Helgason, CEO at Unity Technologies, Unity 5 sports the most complex lighting in the industry now.
Speaking to VentureBeat, David Helgason had this to say:
“We’ve got the most complex lighting in the industry now. We think we can get to the point where we beat everything else out there.”
Unity Technologies has issued a press release about Unity 5. Here are the key features of this new engine:
Unity 5 will launch with a new built-in physically-based shader system. It is designed to cover a wide variety of real-world materials under all lighting situations and includes a vastly improved workflow, from the art pipeline all the way to the UI. Unity 5 also introduces full deferred shading and baked reflection probes for realistic environment-based specular highlights.
Real-time Global Illumination with Enlighten
Unity has entered into a partnership with Geomerics to integrate Enlighten, their industry-leading real-time global illumination technology, into Unity 5. Enlighten is the only real-time global illumination technology optimized to deliver fully dynamic lighting in game on today’s PCs, consoles, and mobile platforms. Animate lights, emissive material properties and control the environment lighting in real-time. Enlighten’s technology also brings dramatic workflow improvements, enabling artists and designers to work directly in Unity 5’s editor to create realistic and engaging visuals for all game styles. The technology is the lighting solution of choice for some of today’s most advanced and best-selling titles.
Real-time Lightmap Previews
In partnership with Imagination Technologies, Unity 5 will be the first-ever development platform to ship with in-editor real-time lightmap previews based on Imagination’s ground-breaking PowerVR Ray Tracing technology. This exciting addition allows for near instantaneous feedback from changes to global illumination lightmaps by displaying an accurate preview in the editor’s scene view of how lighting will look in the final game. With this technology, artists can continue to iterate and refine the look of a level while final lightmaps update and bake in the background, dramatically decreasing the amount of time needed to make artistic adjustments to scenes.
Unity’s entire audio pipeline has been rewritten to be more efficient and flexible. The first big feature included with the overhaul is an Audio Mixer designed to allow highly complex real-time re-routing and effects scenarios. Designers can take snapshots of mixer settings for dynamic transitions between sound profiles during gameplay.