Despite the fact that the latest UE4 tech demo looks amazing, a lot of gamers were disappointed when they witnessed the differences between the GDC2013 trailer of Elemental and its latest version. Global illumination was nowhere to be found, something that had a huge impact on the demo’s visuals. As a result of that, a couple of gamers claimed that UE4 was in fact a step backwards and in order to calm everyone down, Epic’s rendering team leader has decided to shed some light.
According to Epic’s rendering team leader, UE4 supports multiple tiers of lighting options, meaning that developers will be able to either use fully dynamic lighting or precomputed lighting. The first method provides maximum interactivity, editor workflow and game design flexibility while the second one is better suited for those seeking maximum quality and performance.
But what about the Global illumination that was absent from the latest Elemental tech demo? Well, all hope is not lost as it seems that Epic has not come up yet with a dynamic GI solution for its fully dynamic lighting path, something that might get addressed in the near future.
“Fully dynamic lighting and precomputed lighting are just two tools in our UE4 toolbox. We have games being made like Fortnite that are using fully dynamic lighting, no lighting build times, and the game has full flexibility to change what it desires at runtime. In the case of Fortnite, this is used to great effect with building and harvesting of resources. We don’t yet have a solution for dynamic GI in the fully dynamic lighting path, this is something we hope to address in the future.”
Now this either means that UE4 has been re-written or that the GI scenes (do note that we are talking about the GI scenes and not about the whole tech demo) from the GDC2013 tech demo lacked full dynamic lights.
Epic’s employee also added that the Infiltrator demo used precomputed lighting that freed up a lot of processing power.
“In short: we would have had to scale down Infiltrator massively without precomputing some of the lighting. There are over 1000 lights in some of the scenes, and about half of those cast shadows.”
Enjoy – once again – the amazing Infiltrator Tech Demo that was running on a single GTX680!
John is the founder and Editor in Chief at DSOGaming. He is a PC gaming fan and highly supports the modding and indie communities. Before creating DSOGaming, John worked on numerous gaming websites. While he is a die-hard PC gamer, his gaming roots can be found on consoles. John loved - and still does - the 16-bit consoles, and considers SNES to be one of the best consoles. Still, the PC platform won him over consoles. That was mainly due to 3DFX and its iconic dedicated 3D accelerator graphics card, Voodoo 2. John has also written a higher degree thesis on the "The Evolution of PC graphics cards."