Unreal Engine 4.0 to exclusively target consoles

Written by Tim Smalley

March 13, 2008 // 12:24 p.m.

Tags: #4 #console #engine #epic #games #microsoft #next-gen #nintendo #playstation #sweeney #tim #unreal

Following his recent, and rather controversial comments, about the state of PC gaming and the PC graphics market, Tim Sweeney has revealed that the developer's next engine, Unreal Engine 4.0, will "exclusively target the next console generation."

Sweeney said that PC development would follow after the engine has been rolled out onto the Xbox 360's and Playstation 3's successors. He even went so far as to say that "if Nintendo ships a machine with similar hardware specs, then that [will also be supported before the PC]."

This is no doubt a major disaster for PC gamers, because Epic is one of the largest game engine licensers in the industry – many developers have licensed Unreal Engine 3.0 technology for use in their own games and we expect the same to happen when UE4 shows up.

What's more disappointing is that Epic Games is a member of the PC Gaming Alliance, yet it appears to be doing just about everything but helping to make PC gaming a better proposition. I honestly find Sweeney's comments to resemble something similar to a kick in the nuts for those of us that game on the PC and have made Epic what it is today - after all, Epic started life as a developer that made games exclusively for the PC.

Interestingly though, Sweeney believes there is a battle for supremacy brewing between CPU and GPU makers, as the two are starting to converge on one another.

"Both can run any kind of code, GPUs are just much better optimized for highly parallel vector computing," he said. "CPUs are better for authorized out-of-order, branching, and operating system type of things. Once they both have a complete feature-set, things will get very interesting there.

"We could see the CPU pushing GPUs out of the market entirely, if the integration of highly parallel computing influences future designs," Sweeney said. "Or, we could see GPU vendors start pushing actual CPUs out of the market: Windows or any other operating system could run directly on a GPU. There are lots of possibilities."

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