Unreal Engine 5, widely known for its ability to create impressive 3D worlds quickly, is popular among gamers and for Hollywood virtual sets. The new native support for Apple Silicon, offered in the recent 5.2 version update, is expected to significantly enhance performance on M1 and M2 Macs.
In addition to the update for Macs, Epic has unveiled a new iPad app for virtual productions that integrates with Unreal Engine’s In-Camera VFX (ICVFX) editor. According to Epic, the app provides an “intuitive touch-based interface for stage operations such as color grading, light card placement, and nDisplay management tasks from anywhere within the LED volume”. This essentially allows various creative professionals to manipulate lighting and other elements on virtual sets using a portable, user-friendly interface.
This update arrives amid the ongoing antitrust dispute between Apple and Epic Games over App Store commissions on Fortnite. Although Apple largely prevailed, with an appeal panel ruling that the company was not monopolistic in the distribution of iOS apps, a judge blocked an earlier attempt by Apple to suspend Epic Games’ developer account.
The Unreal Engine 5.2 update also introduces a “Procedural Content Generation framework,” which allows users to populate large scenes with Unreal Engine assets of their choice, thereby speeding up the world-building process.
Another feature, Substrate, provides users with greater control over the aesthetics of objects used in real-time applications or linear content creation. Epic showcased this feature by applying a metallic paint job to the Rivian R1T electric pickup in its previous demo.