Epic Games Announces $1 Million in Unreal Dev Grants

Epic Games has announced the recipients of its latest round of Unreal Dev Grants, with 37 teams and creators receiving a total of $1 million in no-strings-attached funding for games, tools, broadcast and beyond. The Unreal Dev Grants program was established in February 2015 as a $5 million fund for promising developers working with Unreal Engine 4; awards range from $5,000 to $50,000 with no restrictions or obligations to Epic Games. This latest round of Unreal Dev Grants underscores the variety of applications for Unreal Engine, with software plugins, VR games, AI-driven educational platforms, and healthcare tools all receiving financial assistance.

 
“The Unreal Dev Grants program was designed to give studios and other developers a boost to bring their promising working prototypes to market, and to give back to the wider Unreal developer community as they use the engine in interesting ways,” said Chance Ivey, Partnership Manager at Epic Games. “This new round is our biggest yet, and we are blown away by the potential of projects like Kara Education, an AI-driven online educational platform for kids with hearing difficulties; VStore, a VR tool for quick and portable early dementia screenings; and Anima, a robust crowd simulation plugin for Unreal that can be leveraged by any game designer or VFX artist working with Unreal. Congratulations to all of these recipients on their exciting work; we can’t wait to see what’s next!”
 
The new round of grant recipients includes:
 

 
Amid Evil by New Blood InteractiveSteam Page
In this 90s-inspired FPS adventure, players take on evil hordes with sacred magical weaponry and spells. Travel through seven distinct episodes to hone your skills against evil and reclaim your world.
 
Anima Plugin for UE4 by AXYZ DesignWebsite
anima© 3.0 by AXYZ Design is a robust crowd simulation plugin for Unreal Engine that helps architects, designers and visualization professionals to populate hundreds of 3D characters and bring them into Unreal Engine 4 scenes with just a few mouse clicks.
 

Atomic Heart by MundfishWebsite
Atomic Heart is a first-person shooter that takes players inside an alternate universe during the high noon of the Soviet Union. Follow a Soviet special agent to unlock thrilling secrets and show the Motherland what you’re made of.
 

Brief Battles by Juicy Cupcake Website
A hilarious platform fighter, Brief Battles uses underpants as a weapon. Players can choose from a variety of super-powered underpants and different game modes as they compete to see who has the mightiest buns.
 
Project “Caillou” (Working title) by AwacebVideoWebsite
Awaceb is a small indie team of two childhood friends from New Caledonia in the French territory of the Pacific. Project “Caillou” tells touching, poetic stories in an open, physics-based and dynamic 3D world.
 
Desolate Sands by Blacksmith StudiosWebsite
Desolate Sands is a VR puzzle game set in an ancient pyramid. The objective is to reach the bottom by leveraging nearby movable objects and levers to solve a series of complex puzzles.
 
ELLI by Bandana KidWebsite
In this puzzle platforming game, players travel as ancient time guardian Elli on a journey to recover the stolen sands of time.
 

 
Feri VinczeWebsite
Feri Vincze is a freelance 3D artist and videographer using Unreal Engine 4 to render elegant animated films such as “The Chest.”
 

Ghost by Sky Machine StudiosWebsite
Ghost is a sandbox stealth game set in a Victorian era world, where players seek to uncover the truth about Arthur Artorias’ past. In this game, light is the enemy – stay in the shadows and explore the darkness to survive.
 
Guntastic by Ludicrous GamesWebsite
Guntastic is an arcade-inspired game involving shooting and mayhem. Battle with up to four local or online players in fast-paced, one-shot one-kill, nonstop matches over continuously changing levels.
 

 
Headsnatchers by IguanabeeSteam Page
Headsnatchers is a multiplayer party game where players each try to keep their heads on their shoulders while trying to remove everyone else’s. Play across four different game modes in over 25 unique environments, each with different rules and attributes.
 
Hear No Evil by Rockodile GamesWebsite
Hear No Evil tells the story of humanity’s last remnants, who return to earth to fight for their future. This game is a visually spectacular top-down action shooter inspired by Alienation and Helldivers.
 

 
Hellbound by Saibot StudiosWebsite
Hellbound is a demonic first-person shooter game inspired by classic 90s games like DOOM and Quake created by an independent team of developers in Argentina.
 

 
Kara Education by Kara TechnologiesWebsite
Kara is an online education platform for children with hearing difficulties. The platform delivers educational material using an avatar, driven by Kara’s AI and machine learning algorithms and Unreal Engine.
 

 
Kine by Gwen FreySteam Page
Kine is a 3D puzzle game about three whimsical machines that aspire to be musicians. Players embark across a theatrically rendered cityscape and solve increasingly difficult 3D puzzles to help the machines form a band and catch their big break.
 

 
Little Devil Inside by NeostreamWebsite
Little Devil Inside is an engaging 3D action adventure RPG game where players are thrown into a surreal environment with elements that challenge their survival instincts. Explore, adapt, and fight to survive.
 

 
M.A.S.S Builder by Vermillion Digital Co., Ltd. – Facebook
M.A.S.S. Builder pits humans against invading aliens in the fight for the Earth. Players will build, customize and control the ultimate M.A.S.S. (Mechanical Assault Skeleton Suit) in an effort to save the world.
 

 
Midnight Ghost Hunt by MellowsoftWebsite
Midnight Ghost Hunt is a multiplayer hide-and-seek game that pits a team of Ghosts against a team of Ghost Hunters. The hunt begins at the stroke of midnight, and it’s a race against the clock to either stay hidden or uncover the ghosts.
 

 
NanoSpace by Synthetic SystemsSteam Page
Nanospace is a 3D platformer with elements of real-time strategy. Players take control of three “nano-mites” in levels full of riddles, monsters, inventory and more.
 
Neon Giant – Unannounced TitleWebsite
Neon Giant is a group of game veterans with a experience in some of the world’s biggest action game franchises. The studio is hard at work on its first title, set in a brand new cyberpunk world.
 
New Reality Co. – Unannounced ProjectWebsite
New Reality Co is a creative studio by Milica Zec and Winslow Porter, dedicated to synthesizing storytelling, art, and technology into groundbreaking and emotional projects. New Reality are the creators behind the award-winning Giant and Tree VR experiences, both of which are built with Unreal and previously benefitted from Unreal Dev Grants.
 
NotMyCar by NMC StudiosVideoWebsite
NotMyCar is a white-knuckle, lead-footed massive multiplayer vehicular combat battle royale game. Drop into the battleground and use cool weapons and abilities to fight your way through single-elimination combat and become the ultimate survivor. Customize your ride to make it a beast of a vehicle to take on anyone, anytime.
 

 
Oceanhorn 2 by Cornfox and Bros.Website
Oceanhorn 2, which was showcased in the Unreal Engine booth at GDC 2018, is the upcoming sequel to the action-adventure mobile game featuring exploration in a colorful world with items, puzzles and battles.
 

 
Origin Zero by Black Amber Digital – Website
Origin Zero is an episode-based, sci-fi animation project lovingly crafted by a small, dedicated team using Unreal Engine 4.
 

 
Paradise Lost by PolyAmorous  – Website
Paradise Lost is a non-linear narrative driven adventure game with meaningful, kinesthetic interactions dynamically changing both the environment and the story you are experiencing.
 

 
The Path of Calydra by FinalbossWebsite
The Path of Calydra is an 3D adventure platformer set in the fantastic world of Calygore. Explore as suburban teenager Matheus, who has been transported to Calygore and must rely on an unusual entity named Calydra to seek out four powerful crystals and return home.
 
Point Cloud Plugin by PhobozForum Post
The Point Cloud Plugin by Phoboz is a free plugin for Unreal Engine 4, developed to help with importing, processing and rendering of point clouds. It is currently in beta for Windows.
 

 
Raji: An Ancient Epic by Nodding Head GamesWebsite
Raji: An Ancient Epic is an action adventure game set in ancient India. Raji is a young girl chosen by the gods to stand against the demonic invasion of the human realm, saving her younger brother in the process.
 
Rocket Jockey by Burn Ward Games – Website
Rocket Jockey is a team-based game that plays like a cross between Rocket League and Super Smash Bros. Fly on top of modern jet engines with classic car chassis at break-neck speeds.
 

 
Scene Fusion by KinematicSoup TechnologiesWebsite
Scene Fusion for Unreal Engine makes real-time editor collaboration possible. Developers can build all sorts of content together in real time, resulting in significant time savings.
 
Second Order
Independent developer Second Order, creator of Claybook, is being recognized and awarded for contributing numerous fantastic rendering features and optimizations to Unreal Engine 4. This is the team’s second Unreal Dev Grant.
 

 
Session by Crea-ture StudiosWebsite
Inspired by the golden era skate culture of the late 90s and early 2000s, Session is an upcoming skateboarding game that is all about authenticity, creativity and the freedom of expression that skateboarding provides.
 

 
SMALLAND by EMBU GamesWebsite
With SMALLAND, the survival genre gets a tinier take that lets you appreciate the little things, or flee in terror of the little things. The slightest breeze can sweep your items or even your house away from you. The simplest rainfall can form puddles the size of lakes in a matter of minutes.
 

 
Solar Warden by Polar ZenithWebsite
Solar Warden is a six-degrees-of-freedom space shooter combined with an overarching campaign with real time strategy elements. Jump into your fighter and combat the silicoid menace up close, while you command and dispatch the Solar Warden fleet for reinforcements.
 

 
Someday You’ll Return by CBE SoftwareWebsite
Someday You’ll Return is a story-driven psychological horror game about a desperate search for a missing daughter deep in the woods where you swore you’d never return.
 
Twenty StudiosWebsite
Sweden’s Twenty Studios, together with SuperFly.tv and LeViteZer, is crafting intuitive open source software that brings the power of Unreal Engine 4 to live mixed reality production and video compositing pipelines.
 
VStore by VitaeVRWebsite
Vstore, which recently entered wide clinical trials, is a fully functioning virtual reality supermarket which offers a fast, accurate and portable method of screening for early indicators of dementia. Diagnosing dementia at the earliest possible stages is critical because that is when treatment is at its most effective.
 
To learn more about Unreal Dev Grants and to apply for a future award, visit: http://unrealengine.com/unrealdevgrants

Industry Leaders in Design Come Together at Build: Stockholm’18

Real-time technology is transforming the creative world in incredible ways, and it’s amazing to see how more and more designers across many different industries are building new innovations with the power of Unreal Engine.

Our real-time platform cont…

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night Aims to Stand Out from Castlevania in a Big Way

When you have the weight of a beloved and successful franchise sitting on your shoulders, it can be tough to get out from under it. In the case of legendary game designer Koji Igarashi, he holds the hopes and dreams of millions of Castlevania fans in his hands. It’s a responsibility he doesn’t take lightly and when he launched the Kickstarter campaign for Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night he knew the fans would come running.

Starting with a modest $500,000 goal, Bloodstained went on to smash said goal to the tune of $5,545,991. Fans were hungry to see what a fresh franchise could be when it came from the mind of someone they already respected so deeply. Of course, along with that 5.5 million dollars came the heavy responsibility of delivering on the promises. This fact, for better or for worse, wasn’t lost on Igarashi-san as he pushed forward with Bloodstained’s development.

As we inch ever nearer to the release of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, rest assured that every effort has been taken to please backers and fans. We chatted with Igarashi-san about the ways in which he used Unreal Engine 4 to bring Bloodstained to life and the advice he would offer to other developers who are considering crowdfunding for their games. 
 

Inevitably fans are going to draw lines between Bloodstained and your work with Castlevania. How does Bloodstained differ from the Castlevania games that you’ve already made?

My concept is to keep the same gameplay style but create a complete renewal of an old idea. The lore, the concept, and the game system will be very different while maintaining the same gameplay experience.

You didn’t come to the table alone, bringing legendary composer Michiru Yamane along for the ride. Known for composing music in not only the Castlevania series but also contributing to Skullgirls, Super Smash Bros. (Wii U) and even DDR, how did Michiru’s experience help shape the direction of the game? 

First of all, having Michiru-san join the team really brings the gothic feel to the game. The tracks are high quality and this time, we have live strings to go with it. At first, I wasn’t too sure about using an actual orchestra, but when I heard it in person it was amazing. I felt goosebumps all over me. 

Considering the variety of features we see in Metroidvania games, is there a mechanic or feature(s) that’s wholly different in Bloodstained? Or does Bloodstained double down on any specific feature and make it better?

The theme of Bloodstained is alchemy so there are a lot of features that resonate with it – transmutation, cooking, strengthening your character and more. The use of “shards” make the player stronger and is a feature that is specific to Bloodstained. There are many more features that are wholly new to the game.

What difficulties did you run into trying to make this its own product separate from Castlevania? Did you find yourself falling into any old tropes from that series and have to correct course?

The story and the setting of the game was the most challenging part. It was especially difficult to come up with the protagonist, Miriam, whose dark past was very difficult to differentiate with that of the older characters from the series. The Castlevania series has a lore that was built and accumulated over the years which has an uncomplicated premise, while the deeper part of the story is told by creating a connection with the previous title. With a fresh title like Bloodstained, the difficult part is explaining the setting and having people understand the concept. 

How did crowdfunding change the development process? What do other developers looking at this method need to know?

The largest difference is that there was so much information and materials necessary before the development even started. Normally, the promotion starts few months before the game’s release. When we show these things too soon, we end up not having enough exciting features to show by the time the game releases. I would love to show a lot more to the game’s backers, but it’s also a dilemma when too much content could hurt the charm of playing the game when it releases.

Keeping with crowdfunding, every single stretch goal was met as Bloodstained far surpassed initial expectations. Do you feel an extra level of responsibility knowing that so many people put their faith in the game? Has that been a source of inspiration or even stress?

Ever since being put in charge of a popular franchise with one of the most hardcore fan bases around, the pressure that comes with it has not really been any different. However, knowing that I have to keep in mind the stretch goals is quite stressful. Circumstances from when we set the stretch goals and the circumstances that we are currently in could drastically change, so there can sometime be concern about breaking those promises. 
 
Unreal Engine 4 is particularly known for its high level of quality in the 3D space. How did those same tools help you make such a gorgeous and compelling 2D game?

Although the gameplay style is 2D, the art assets are all in 3D. In terms of the visual appearance of the game, Unreal Engine 4 has really helped us. For us, we have been using the physics material and the built-in physics made it surprisingly simple to achieve the kind of look we were going for.
 
I always like to ask seasoned developers to pass on some of their knowledge to the eager new developers on the scene. If you could offer up a single piece of advice to someone taking on a game in Unreal Engine 4 what would that be?

With a basic knowledge of using Unreal Engine 4, it is very easy to create a mock of the game you’re trying to make and test it while building it. Although this seems simple, I would advise that not everything is as easy as it looks by solely relying on the engine. The developer must first and foremost pick a plan that is the best way to approach building a game by understanding the engine’s limitation and its advantages. Unreal Engine 4 is free and an open source engine. There are tons of resources that developers could study before starting a project without prior knowledge and workflow plan. I think it is important to keep a mindset of not being satisfied with only what we are given for granted.

Where are all the places people can go to keep up on Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night?
 

You can find the latest information on Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night through our Kickstarter update page and through the Discord community. An official game website will be created soon as well. 
 
 

 

Unreal Engine Developers Come Out On Top at E3 2018

The video game industry came together last week in Los Angeles as E3 2018 gave teams of all shapes and sizes a central stage to showcase their work. At the heart of it all were Unreal Engine developers who dominated headlines and demonstrated a vast variety of projects across platforms and genres.

From the bright lights of major press events to the bustling show floor and everywhere in between, Unreal Engine developers came out on top with major titles like Kingdom Hearts III, Jump Force and Gears of War 5 generating plenty of buzz while projects like Planet Alpha, We Happy Few, The Sinking City and Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden gave players plenty to look forward to post-E3.

Here’s a rundown of the Unreal Engine developer happenings at this year’s E3:

UNREAL E3 AWARDS

Prior to E3, we announced a partnership with NVIDIA and Intel on the 2018 Unreal E3 Awards. Featuring five distinct categories, the goal of the awards is to provide developers from around the world with the recognition they deserve along with excellent hardware including an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti and Intel® Core™ i7-8700K Processor for each winning team.

The five 2018 Unreal E3 Award category nominees and winners are listed below:

EYE CANDY

This award is given to the most visually impressive Unreal Engine game at E3 2018 and rewards the use of leading-edge graphics that push the medium of interactive entertainment forward.

NOMINEES:

Kingdom Hearts III (Square Enix, Disney)        

Concrete Genie (Pixelopus, Sony Interactive Entertainment)    

Mutant Year Zero (The Bearded Ladies, Funcom)      

Jump Force (Spike Chunsoft, Bandai Namco)    

Daemon Ex Machina (Marvelous, Nintendo)

Planet Alpha (Planet Alpha ApS, Team17)

AND THE WINNER IS…
 

BIGGEST BUZZ

This award is given to the project that creates the most talked about moment of E3 2018. From a major game reveal to an undeniably impressive demo or a twist that flips the industry on its ear, this award goes to the Unreal Engine team or project that produces the most buzz.

NOMINEES:

Kingdom Hearts 3 (Square Enix, Disney)

Jump Force (Spike Chunsoft, Bandai Namco)

Gears of War 5 (The Coalition, Microsoft Studios)

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit (DONTNOD, Square Enix)

We Happy Few (Compulsion Games, Microsoft Studios)

AND THE WINNER IS…
 

MOST ENGAGING

This award is given to the experience that we simply can’t put down. Nominees will make players forget about their surroundings and be transported into a truly immersive experience.

NOMINEES:

Mutant Year Zero (The Bearded Ladies, Funcom)            

We Happy Few (Compulsion Games, Microsoft Studios)            

Kingdom Hearts III (Square Enix, Disney)            

The Sinking City (Frogwares)    

AND THE WINNER IS…
 

OUTSTANDING ORIGINAL GAME

This award is given to the project with huge potential as an all-new IP. Nominees will spark interest not only through gameplay, but through original characters, worlds and the potential that is put on full display during E3 2018.

NOMINEES:

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit (DONTNOD, Square Enix)

Octopath Traveler (Square Enix, Nintendo)

Planet Alpha (Planet Alpha ApS, Team17)

Concrete Genie (Pixelopus, Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Mutant Year Zero (The Bearded Ladies, Funcom)

Daemon Ex Machina (Marvelous, Nintendo)

AND THE WINNER IS…
 

UNREAL UNDERDOG

This award is given to the team that pushes the limits to achieve an amazing showing for their game or experience at E3. Focusing on not just the product, but the people and process behind it, this award acknowledges a team’s perseverance to make a big splash at the big show.

NOMINEES:

Islands of Nyne (Define Human Studios)    

Rend (Frostkeep Studios)    

Planet Alpha (Planet Alpha ApS, Team17)    

The Forgotten City (Modern Storyteller)            

Raji: An Ancient Epic (Nodding Heads Games)

AND THE WINNER IS…
 

 

UNREAL DEVS TAKE CENTER STAGE

 

No matter where you went during E3 2018, Unreal Engine-powered games left a lasting impression. From the bomb-dropping reveals of The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit and Gears of War 5 at the Xbox briefing to highly-anticipated updates on Days Gone and Kingdom Hearts III from the PlayStation team, Unreal developers kicked off the week with loads of headlines. Meanwhile, The Square Enix and Nintendo media events showcased tantalizing Unreal-powered titles like Dragon Quest XI, Octopath Traveler and the newly-announced Daemon Ex Machina by Marvelous.

In addition, the announcement that Microsoft Studios has acquired three of the top independent Unreal Engine shops – Compulsion Games, Ninja Theory and Undead Labs – made a huge splash throughout the industry.

The E3 show floor itself featured plenty of playable projects developed with Unreal Engine, including Bandai Namco Entertainment’s always-busy booth with SoulCalibur VI, Jump Force and Code Vein while PSVR titles Firewall Zero Hour and Evasion gave virtual reality fans lots to be excited about.

We hit the floor to speak with developers about their work. Check out a few interviews below and be sure to visit our E3 2018 playlist for all the latest as new videos are released!
 

 

 

 

 

UNREAL ENGINE COMMUNITY MEETUP

The Unreal Engine team invited the community out to The Palm restaurant during E3 2018 for a cocktail hour featuring drinks, light hors d’oeuvres and the opportunity to connect with Epic and other developers during the big show.

A variety of developers from students to AAA gathered with us for socializing and the chance to win Unreal Engine swag and an NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti graphics card, courtesy of our partners at NVIDIA.

Many thanks to all who came out to the meetup. If you’re looking to connect with other Unreal Engine developers in your area, be sure to check out our Meetup page for the very latest opportunities to do just that!

 

ALL ABOARD THE BATTLE BUS

Of course, Epic Games had a big presence at E3 2018 with a booth dedicated to Fortnite. The booth, which earned several ‘Best of Show’ awards, invited fans to play the game on all available platforms (including the newly-announced Nintendo Switch version), showcase their smooth moves on the dance floor, see if they can outlast the rideable llama, pick up Fortnite merchandise, scope out an actual Battle Bus and enjoy a seemingly endless stream of fresh-baked cookies.

Yum!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by!

 

THE UNREAL ENGINE GAMES OF E3 2018

Thank you to all of the Unreal Engine developers who made this year’s E3 so great to attend and even view from afar. We at Epic know the challenges, risks and rewards of game development and we tip our hats to the teams that make it to the annual convention in Los Angeles. Below is a list of the Unreal Engine developers who showcased their games at E3 2018. We’re extremely proud of our entire community and can’t wait to see how your projects progress from here.

Appalachian Mining Town, Eastern Kentucky University

ARK, Studio Wildcard

Ashen, Aurora44, Annapurna Interactive

Beat Boxers, Brigham Young

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, Inti Creates, 505 Games

Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition, People Can Fly, Gearbox Publishing

Code Vein, Bandai Namco Entertainment

Concrete Genie, Pixelopus, Sony Interactive Entertainment>

Crackdown 3, Sumo Digital, Microsoft

Creed: Rise to Glory, Survios

Daemon X Machina, Marvelous, Nintendo

Days Gone, Sony Bend, Sony

Dragon Ball FighterZ, Arc System Works, Bandai Namco Entertainment

Dragon Quest XI, Square Enix

Earthfall, Holospark

Evasion, Archiact VR

Firewall Zero Hour, First Contact Entertainment, Sony Interactive Entertainment

Fortnite, Epic Games, Epic Games/Gearbox

Fractured Lands, Unbroken Studios

Gears of War 5, The Coalition, Microsoft Studios

Gears: Tactics, The Coalition, Microsoft Studios

Genesis: Alpha One, Radiation Blue, Team17

Hello Neighbor, Dynamic Pixels, tinyBuild

Hero Academy, BonusXP, Robot Entertainment

Hyper Arena VR, Hyperbook

Insurgency: Sandstorm, New World Interactive

Islands of Nyne, Define Human Studios

Jump Force, Spike Chunsoft, Bandai Namco Entertainment

Kaisuo, University of Southern California

Killing Floor 2, Tripwire Interactiv

Kingdom Hearts 2.5, Square Enix

Kingdom Hearts III, Square Enix

Moss, Polyarc

Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, The Bearded Ladies, Funcom

Ninjala, Gung Ho Online Entertainment

Octopath Traveler, Square Enix

Planet Alpha, Planet Alpha ApS, Team17

PLAYER UNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS, PUBG Corp., Bluehole

Raji: An Ancient Epic, Nodding Heads Games

Realm Royale, Hi-Rez Studios

Rend, Frostkeep

Rune, Human Head Studios

Sea of Thieves – Buried Sails & Forsaken Shores, Rare Ltd, Microsoft

Session, crea-ture Studios

Shinobi Striker, Soleil Corporation, Bandai Namco Entertainment

Snailiens, 562 Interactive

SoulCalibur VI, Bandai Namco Entertainment

Spyro Reignited Trilogy, Toys for Bob, Activision

The Artful Escape, Beethoven & Dinosaur, Annapurna Interactive

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit, DONTNOD, Square Enix

The Forgotten City, Modern Storytellers

The Sinking City, Frogwares

Trover Saves The Universe, Squanch Games

Vampyr, DONTNOD, Focus Home Interactive

Vigor, Bohemia Interactive

We Happy Few, Compulsion Games, Microsoft Studios

If we missed your Unreal Engine project at E3, please let us know by emailing e32018@unrealengine.com so we can update the list above.

We look forward to seeing everyone at E3 2019!

How Real-Time Tech Is Changing The Auto Design Landscape

Designing and manufacturing the next generation of stunning automobiles is a complex, lengthy process that can take many years to complete. Perfecting a new model design requires exhaustive prototyping, testing, review, and iteration across what has traditionally been an extensive timeline. We’re reaching an exciting crossroads, however, where modern innovation is ushering in big changes for those who build and sell automotive vehicles. 

More and more we’re seeing major car manufacturers turn to real-time technology to speed up, simplify, and enhance their automotive design experience. Efficiency is at the heart of the growing trend towards real-time design practices in the automotive world. Many brands are eschewing expensive and time-consuming traditional design approaches that still rely on iterating with resin models and costly physical design prototypes. Instead, they’re turning to new techniques that incorporate remote collaboration, 3D visualization, virtual reality, and on-the-fly customization powered by real-time engines.

Enhancing the design process through real-time

CGI and rendering has been a big part of design visualization in the automotive industry for many years now, but working with real-time engines instead of relying on static visualizations allows for faster iteration and a broader range of experience throughout the design process. It’s a more recent shift that’s unlocking a whole new world of potential for improving the craft of auto design.

Using Unreal Engine-powered technologies, innovators in the design space are helping to accelerate key creative and decision making workflows while opening up avenues for car manufacturers to explore entirely new design experiences. Nvidia’s Holodeck, for example, makes it possible for teams located anywhere in the world to come together and collaborate virtually in a photorealistic VR design space. This could revolutionize how designers in global companies work together, letting them create faster and more collaboratively.

BMW recently implemented a mixed reality lab into its automotive design pipeline, which pairs a VR headset with a physical vehicle interior model to create an immersive and tactile 360 real-time experience. The system gives designers a feel for the driver’s experience with a prototype model before the car is even built, allowing for more informed decision making throughout the design process. Following suit, we’re seeing other major automotive brands also utilizing real-time design in different ways to enhance and improve production cycles.

Beyond its ability to bring unique interactive experiences into the design process, real-time technology empowers greater efficiency across the board. Design feedback often happens very quickly once it’s under review, but it can still take weeks for changes to be implemented using traditional methods. Designers now have the power to implement same-day changes, giving them greater creative flexibility and more opportunities to iterate without the added downtime. What once took weeks can now be done in days or less. This can also help teams identify design issues faster in the creative cycle, significantly reducing the potential for flaws that might carry forward into later stretches of production.

Synergy is equally important throughout the automotive world, and anywhere manufacturers can find ways to make good use of existing design product can save time and money in the long run. Assets created using real-time technology have the benefit of being easily recycled across other areas of the production and marketing pipeline, essentially letting designers do the heavy lifting once then propagating their work easily, whether it’s beauty renders and promotional materials or customer-side real-time visualizations.

Creating a new automotive customer experience

What’s exciting is how the potential of real time tech is rapidly expanding to other areas of the industry. It’s not just about forging a more efficient design process; giving designers greater flexibility to customize their work in real time makes it possible to shape each experience to suit the specific needs of clients, customers, and stakeholders. This is vital for internal review sessions and big presentations with key decision makers, but it’s also a game-changer in the automotive retail space, too.

The ability to create custom photorealistic configurations of different car models in real time to suit an individual customer’s tastes — right down to package options and color choices — is a powerful tool for helping to sell automobiles. Custom car configurators are becoming increasingly commonplace, and companies like Volkswagen are taking the tech even further. VW Sweden recently hired Animech, a visualization tools design firm, to create an immersive VR configurator experience that lets customers don a VR headset and interact with a fully customizable, photorealistic car in real-time without leaving their seat. It’s another great example of the innovation we’re seeing, as the industry warms up to the possibilities of real-time design.

We’re in an exciting age of experience, and it’s only going to grow as the automotive industry continues to evolve and embrace the potential of now.

Ready to accelerate your design workflows with Unreal Engine? Get the Unreal Studio free beta and level-up your real-time visualizations today!

 

How Real-Time Tech Is Changing The Auto Design Landscape

Designing and manufacturing the next generation of stunning automobiles is a complex, lengthy process that can take many years to complete. Perfecting a new model design requires exhaustive prototyping, testing, review, and iteration across what has traditionally been an extensive timeline. We’re reaching an exciting crossroads, however, where modern innovation is ushering in big changes for those who build and sell automotive vehicles. 

More and more we’re seeing major car manufacturers turn to real-time technology to speed up, simplify, and enhance their automotive design experience. Efficiency is at the heart of the growing trend towards real-time design practices in the automotive world. Many brands are eschewing expensive and time-consuming traditional design approaches that still rely on iterating with resin models and costly physical design prototypes. Instead, they’re turning to new techniques that incorporate remote collaboration, 3D visualization, virtual reality, and on-the-fly customization powered by real-time engines.

Enhancing the design process through real-time

CGI and rendering has been a big part of design visualization in the automotive industry for many years now, but working with real-time engines instead of relying on static visualizations allows for faster iteration and a broader range of experience throughout the design process. It’s a more recent shift that’s unlocking a whole new world of potential for improving the craft of auto design.

Using Unreal Engine-powered technologies, innovators in the design space are helping to accelerate key creative and decision making workflows while opening up avenues for car manufacturers to explore entirely new design experiences. Nvidia’s Holodeck, for example, makes it possible for teams located anywhere in the world to come together and collaborate virtually in a photorealistic VR design space. This could revolutionize how designers in global companies work together, letting them create faster and more collaboratively.

BMW recently implemented a mixed reality lab into its automotive design pipeline, which pairs a VR headset with a physical vehicle interior model to create an immersive and tactile 360 real-time experience. The system gives designers a feel for the driver’s experience with a prototype model before the car is even built, allowing for more informed decision making throughout the design process. Following suit, we’re seeing other major automotive brands also utilizing real-time design in different ways to enhance and improve production cycles.

Beyond its ability to bring unique interactive experiences into the design process, real-time technology empowers greater efficiency across the board. Design feedback often happens very quickly once it’s under review, but it can still take weeks for changes to be implemented using traditional methods. Designers now have the power to implement same-day changes, giving them greater creative flexibility and more opportunities to iterate without the added downtime. What once took weeks can now be done in days or less. This can also help teams identify design issues faster in the creative cycle, significantly reducing the potential for flaws that might carry forward into later stretches of production.

Synergy is equally important throughout the automotive world, and anywhere manufacturers can find ways to make good use of existing design product can save time and money in the long run. Assets created using real-time technology have the benefit of being easily recycled across other areas of the production and marketing pipeline, essentially letting designers do the heavy lifting once then propagating their work easily, whether it’s beauty renders and promotional materials or customer-side real-time visualizations.

Creating a new automotive customer experience

What’s exciting is how the potential of real time tech is rapidly expanding to other areas of the industry. It’s not just about forging a more efficient design process; giving designers greater flexibility to customize their work in real time makes it possible to shape each experience to suit the specific needs of clients, customers, and stakeholders. This is vital for internal review sessions and big presentations with key decision makers, but it’s also a game-changer in the automotive retail space, too.

The ability to create custom photorealistic configurations of different car models in real time to suit an individual customer’s tastes — right down to package options and color choices — is a powerful tool for helping to sell automobiles. Custom car configurators are becoming increasingly commonplace, and companies like Volkswagen are taking the tech even further. VW Sweden recently hired Animech, a visualization tools design firm, to create an immersive VR configurator experience that lets customers don a VR headset and interact with a fully customizable, photorealistic car in real-time without leaving their seat. It’s another great example of the innovation we’re seeing, as the industry warms up to the possibilities of real-time design.

We’re in an exciting age of experience, and it’s only going to grow as the automotive industry continues to evolve and embrace the potential of now.

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