Epic Games releases “Unreal Engine 5.1”. Updated Lumen, Nanite and virtual shadow maps

Epic Games has released Unreal Engine 5.1. It can be downloaded from the company’s website .

This release builds on the groundbreaking feature set introduced in UE5 and builds on it to make it more robust, efficient and versatile.

Updated Lumen, Nanite and virtual shadow maps

Laying the foundation for the Lumen dynamic global illumination and reflection system, the Nanite virtualized micro-polygon geometry system, and virtual shadow maps (VSM) for games running at 60fps, etc., for fast competitive games and high-detail Simulation can now run without latency.

At the same time, Nanite has been updated with a Programmable Rasterizer. Programmable Rasterize enables material-driven animation and deformation with world position offsets and opacity masks. Nanite can also be used to program the behavior of certain objects, such as Nanite-based foliage depicting leaves blowing in the wind.

World build tool enhancements

Support for Large World Coordinates in World Partitions makes it possible to create large open worlds without compromising accuracy. New HLOD (Hierarchical Level of Detail) support for water rendering and streaming allows you to create large bodies of water in the open world with less memory usage.

Enhanced In-Camera VFX Editor

Usability has been greatly improved with numerous enhancements, including the In-Camera VFX editor. An improved light card system overlays previews on the nDisplay wall with light cards, making it easy to understand and efficient from creating, moving, and editing light cards to saving templates.

Color Correction Windows (CCW), which applies adjustments only to what is behind them, and the ability to apply color corrections per actor, reduce the need for complex masking.

Animation, rigging and modeling enhancements

Machine Learning (ML) Deformer, currently in beta, lets you create high-fidelity approximations of complex custom rigs and arbitrary deformations. Train a machine learning model with a custom Maya plugin and run it in real time in Unreal Engine.

Machine learning deformer (left) and linear skinning (right)

Meanwhile, Control rigs have been updated with new construction events that allow you to generate rig hierarchies using graphs, and custom user events to create and trigger rig events like ‘Snap FK to IK’. . These updates make it possible to automate the creation of rigs for characters with different skeletal proportions and properties.

In addition, the artificial intelligence (AI) tool MassEntity introduced in UE 5.0 is now in Beta. This enabled the efficient generation of large-scale worlds and the creation of crowds composed of tens of thousands of realistic AI agents.

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