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About Rainier

PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!

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Unreal Development Kit - Beta 2 Available NOW

by Rainier on Nov. 14, 2009 @ 7:54 a.m. PST

Epic Games launched the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), a free edition of Unreal Engine 3, providing the community access to the toolset like never before, and has now released an updated version.

Get the Unreal Development Kit Beta 2 off WP (550mb)

UDK is available to anyone interested in using 3D game engine technology, from game developers to students, hobbyists to researchers, and creators of architectural walkthroughs to digital filmmakers. Use of UDK is free for all schools and students, and anyone can release free UDK-powered games.

Extensive UDK technical documentation is available at the Unreal Developer Network, and community members can share ideas, show off projects and learn from UDK developers like Psyonix and The Prometheus Team.

3D Buzz will soon release dozens of free video tutorials specific to UDK to complement the company’s existing Unreal Engine 3 video training modules. Over 100 Unreal Technology videos are viewable at the 3D Buzz web site free of charge.

Individuals and companies wishing to develop software for commercial purposes should refer to licensing terms. Commercial terms have been structured to make it easy for independent developers, start-up firms and seasoned professionals to use UDK with minimal financial barrier from concept to deployment.

Beta 2 repairs and improvements:

  • Shader compiler no longer crashes when the log is not writable.
  • Game/editor will run without having to first check for existing script files.
  • Windows XP: Emissive lights causing purple lighting have been fixed.
  • Windows 7: Added new SpeedTree binaries to address OS-specific issue.
  • Added check to confirm GPU meets minimum requirements.
  • Implemented fix for some SpeedTree trees causing crashes.
  • Added fix for invalid characters being allowed in journal files causing database corruption.
  • Incorporated fix for making a game in non-English and then running it on another non-English machine.
  • Installer
    • If a prerequisite fails to install, the install will still continue and warn at the end.
    • Enhanced the check for a valid install path.
    • If the installer is skipped, the EULA comes up once.
    • Fixed CZE install not finding the EULA.
    • Fixed problem if temp install folders were deleted between install and uninstall.
    • Fixed problem if maps were named in non-ASCII characters.

Features:

UDK includes:
  • The Unreal Editor toolset, complete with fully integrated game editing environment.
  • Unreal Gemini multithreaded rendering system with support for all modern rendering and shading techniques, advanced lighting and shadowing, ambient occlusion and a powerful material system for creating complex shaders on the fly.
  • Unreal Lightmass global illumination solver for high-quality static lighting.
  • Unreal PhAT visual physics modeling tool with state-of-the-art physics system powered by NVIDIA PhysX.
  • Unreal Kismet, an advanced visual scripting solution that facilitates rapid prototyping of ideas and gameplay mechanics.
  • AnimSet Viewer and AnimTree Editor, which give animators precise control over every muscle and bone movement.
  • Unreal Matinee, which includes movie director-class tools for creating in-game cut scenes and gorgeous cinematics.
  • UnrealScript, a fully integrated, high-level object-oriented programming language.
  • Unreal Cascade particle effects system for implementing explosions, fog, fire and smoke. Module-based system gives real-time previews of visual effects.
  • Terrain building tool for placing and customizing vegetation, structures and countless in-game points of interest.
  • Audio control through UnrealEd's visual Sound Cue Editor, plus support for major audio compression schemes; 3D sound positioning, spatialization and attenuation; multi-channel playback, and much more. Built-in Internet and LAN networking support for up to 64 players.
  • Integrations with leading game development middleware including NVIDIA PhysX, SpeedTree, FaceFX and Bink Video.
Included Content:

UDK ships with "UT Demo," which is demo content from "Unreal Tournament 3" consisting of four maps: Deck, Necropolis, Sanctuary, and Sandstorm; with deathmatch, team deathmatch, and vehicle capture the flag gametypes. Assets include one robot character, three weapons and four vehicles.

In "UT Demo," blood, gore and human opponents have been removed. Levels have been enhanced to showcase recent upgrades to UE3 technology. See udk.com/showcase-ut-game.html for comparison screenshots.

The "Unreal Tournament 3" Unreal Editor is widely used for learning UE3, and now UDK provides all of its game creation tools in addition to high-level engine features developed since the game?s release. "UT Demo" is an excellent starting point to explore UDK?s capabilities, especially for those looking to develop their own first-person shooter experience.

System requirements

Minimum:
  • Windows XP SP2 or Windows Vista
  • 2.0+ GHz processor
  • 2 GB system RAM
  • SM3-compatible video card
  • 3 GB Free hard drive space
Recommended for Content Development:
  • Windows Vista 64 SP2
  • 2.0+ GHz multi-core processor
  • 8 GB System RAM
  • NVIDIA 8000 series or higher graphics card
  • Plenty of HDD space
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