Epic Games has released their ‘first look’ at the Unreal Engine 5 video game engine. We are obsessed. The graphics are stunning and really showcase the possibilities of CGI, which is great for us! Building more of a conversation around CGI is crucial for all of us within the industry, and Unreal Engine 5 has really blown our minds away! This is a huge development within the CGI realm, for one thing it’s driven a lot of attention towards its capabilities. This new technology is a huge leap within video games and animation. Here at Orbital we are looking into this new technology and will hopefully be using it within our own work. Within our CGI work we create lifestyle shots which are rendered as stills from animations, meaning that any two shots (especially outdoors) can be different, with clouds or shadows moving, if this is your desired outcome. Doing this makes our lifestyle imagery even more realistic. When creating room-set shots it’s not just about making the furniture look as real as possible. It also involves creating realistic room-sets that can be used in catalogues and marketing campaigns to show consumers what your products can look like in an actual environment, not just on a plain background.

Lighting is heavily important within CGI, although subtle, it is what gives an image its final touches in bringing an idea to life! Here at Orbital it is important to us to be able to produce lifestyle imagery that is photorealistic. We are constantly looking into new developments in technology and the field. We have recently been looking into Lavina, to produce even more realistic results. Lavina uses physically based lighting and global illumination to bring to you CGI imagery that is hard to point out. Lavina will also allow for us to produce animations in real-time and then render the shots, making effortless animations of our fantastic imagery. The suns that we add into our scenes create real life lighting, mirroring what products and roomsets would look like in real life! It is important for us to be able to make our clients products look as realistic as possible, after all we’re here to help our clients sell their products and want to do them justice!

Epic Games used a Playstation 5 to showcase the graphics. The environment they have created is so photorealistic you will be captivated when seeing it, it’s difficult to point out that it is CGI. Epic Games have gone as far to say that within this generation they want to achieve photorealism in games on a similar level to movies. They have achieved this by editing their software to now use over a billion triangle pixels, with a much faster rendering time than ever before, these cinematic pixels make the graphics so much more photorealistic. Within the demo clip they have been able to utilize two new technologies, Lumen and Nanite. Lumen renders light sources and focuses on bounce lighting and highlights to create an incredibly realistic environment which changes as you move around it. Nanite is a geometric technology which allows rendered images and environments to be incredibly detailed, this has proven to be especially useful with grass, rocks and other textural elements. By using these technologies Epic Games have been able to create an environment that confuses many of us, even those within the CGI field. We cannot wait to try this out and see what Epic Games develops in the future!