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Unreal 5 game engine - share your thoughts and impressions


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First off, it's the Unreal Engine! Many of us older gamers have been around from the days when the Development team created the Engine itself and released their first game:

As the years have progressed we now find ourselves here:

What is certain, is that the game engine itself is more than capable of the scale and detail required to create something truly special. I look forward to seeing the progress of the environment itself once the map builders get to grips with it especially the weather and water effects. 

 

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UnReal is good enough for Lockheed Martin, so I'm hoping CP will be more than detailed enough for any of us. After going thru some of the stuff I'm reading about UnReal, I'm hoping CP has an easy mode or I might not make it back to the carrier in one piece... 😬

I have no idea which flight engine system CP is using, but things seem to keep getting more and more detailed overall in the flightsim realm, so I'm sure whatever they come up with will be outstanding. 

https://www.unrealengine.com/en-US/spotlights/lockheed-martin-engages-unreal-engine-for-aerospace-simulation-r-d

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26 minutes ago, Major Lee said:

After going thru some of the stuff I'm reading about UnReal, I'm hoping CP has an easy mode or I might not make it back to the carrier in one piece... 

Just remember the simmers motto:

ngu_frog.png.c9f6b004f4fdd33c61001c8def91345d.png

 

Wheels

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Download Missions, Skins, & Essential files for IL-2 1946 and several other game series from Mission4Today.

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I for once am rather excited to see how using UE5 for a WW2 combat flight sim will turn out, given its existing usage in the aerospace industry. The general benefits include very good performance and visuals combined with full continued development of the engine by a team bigger than CP will likely ever have behind it, ensuring the engine cannot exactly fall behind in technology the way proprietary ones often eventually do. Who knows, maybe we'll finally get a combat flight sim that both looks and runs good. As I said, I'm excited to see how the flight simulation side of things will turn out and with Jason at the helm I'm confident the team will do their best to deliver a good sim.

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Once again, I'd like to dampen the enthusiasm a bit 🙂 

4 hours ago, Rothary said:

The general benefits include [...] continued development of the engine [...] ensuring the engine cannot exactly fall behind in technology the way proprietary ones often eventually do.

That's *kinda* true (as long as Unreal is actively developed), but there will be other major versions. Upgrading from one engine version to another is far from easy and sometimes its faster to just do some stuff all over again rather than go through a laborious upgrading process. So it may be true that Unreal itself will likely not fall behind much; that doesn't mean that the specific version CP is on will also not fall behind.

On 5/5/2024 at 9:10 PM, Mysticpuma said:

What is certain, is that the game engine itself is more than capable of the scale and detail required to create something truly special. I look forward to seeing the progress of the environment itself once the map builders get to grips with it especially the weather and water effects. 

Unreal is certainly a very capable engine that can show incredibly detailed environments.

However, that doesn't mean that we *will* see all of the stuff we see in demos. All those assets have to be made or bought before they can be used. All the necessary technologies have to be implemented. That takes time and money. Given that most demos are geared towards FPS style games, it wouldn't surprise me if the Devs spend this time and money elsewhere on something that's more important to a flight sim than, let's say, a varied plant life.

Unreal can do a lot, and I'm sure we will see some excellent graphics. However, we should be careful what we wish for when looking at all those nice Unreal demo videos - expecting a similar quality in all aspects of CP is, well, unreal 😉

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10 hours ago, ÆþelrædUnræd said:

That's *kinda* true (as long as Unreal is actively developed), but there will be other major versions. Upgrading from one engine version to another is far from easy and sometimes its faster to just do some stuff all over again rather than go through a laborious upgrading process. So it may be true that Unreal itself will likely not fall behind much; that doesn't mean that the specific version CP is on will also not fall behind.

We're still very early in the life of UE 5 and UE 6 won't be there for a long while. There is still a lot of improvement to come to UE 5. For example, they will apparently finally put much better multithreading in 5.5.

I personally hope to see nanite in Combat Pilot, which seems to be very well suited to a flight sim where you go from being very far to objects to being very close up, so having an optimal level of detail at each level would allow for great visuals, without pop in.

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These two plugin tutorials/demos really caught my fascination last week. The first one with the coastline modifier is amazing. The second one with the buoyancy system seems particularly applicable to CP.

 

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Pretty graphics in tech demos are neat, but I'm more curious about the nuts and bolts of how the game will actually play! What kind of support does UE5 have for complex AI, and how many can it support? What about interfaces for complex dynamic campaigns? And also how much of this stuff needs to be designed in-house vs things that are already "built in" to the engine (or can be implemented quickly via addons, I suppose is the better way to phrase it)

 

Either way, I think using an engine like this potentially opens up a lot of cool doors for things that we haven't seen in a flight sim before! And with Jason at the helm I'm pretty optimistic that it'll turn into something real eventually. Looking forward to it!

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Posted (edited)

I'm pretty sure that things like AI have to be completely hand-written in C++. You get a lot of the graphics engine 'for free,' but it doesn't mean that there is a plugin for everything.

I assume that they will have to increase the team size substantially in the future when they get (more) into making things that the engine doesn't already support.

Edited by Aapje
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Unreal does have some built-in AI functionality. I am not 100% sure how suitable or scalable it is for a flight sim, but it is there and is fairly easy to set up and use if you are familiar with the engine.

One of the great things about C++, though, is the ability to integrate libraries from outside sources. You can always borrow functionality from these libraries instead of writing 100% from scratch. 

There are also prebuilt suites available, such as SmartEngine, that can be licensed, which would reduce the workload. 

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