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- Open 3D Engine and Unreal Engine 5 are new-generation game engines
- Although Unreal has over 20 years of experience in the industry, both projects provide a high-quality software product
- O3DE has a lower entry threshold than Unreal, but Unreal can be used on more platforms
- Both projects have outstanding features and support AAA
- While few complex projects using either Open 3D Engine or Unreal Engine 5 have been released to date, many games are in the making
- Both projects have an extensive background of partners, including international companies and corporations
- Today, it isn’t easy to decide which of the digs is better, but the decision is in favor of the Unreal, mainly from many years of experience and everything that has been built in these years
The gaming industry is developing at a previously unheard-of pace. This trend requires improving the quality of games and diversity, increasing the in-game world, expanding the lore, and so on. But how to achieve this while meeting the needs of a growing number of gamers?
We will try to answer this question in our article by comparing two engines: Unreal Engine and a completely new O3DE—Open 3D Engine.
Of course, you may wonder how we can even compare Unreal Engine with its 26 years of history and a recently released O3DE. We will be comparing O3DE to Unreal Engine 5 (the latest version of the Unreal engine, while taking into account the gigantic history of the entire Unreal brand).
It’s highly attractive for projects to build using the latest engines, such as UE5, to build games or metaverses, hoping it attracts VCs’ interests, but the high licensing fees and harsh hardware requirements are all potential roadblocks. Personally, we are supportive of building middlewares and tools that can integrate or support assets built by different engines. It’s a competitive market for a massive open world with high-quality graphics.Kelvin Chua, Co-Founder of SkyArk Studio
What is it, and how did it start?
The well-known Unreal Engine, an open-source 3D computer graphics game engine, began its history back in 1996. It was created by Tim Sweeney, the creator of Epic Games, and was made for Epic Games’ first-person 3D shooter titled Unreal, released on May 22, 1998. It took three years to develop the first iteration of the Unreal Engine, and the game whose name it bears was turned into a game series, with a direct sequel and two more games set in the Unreal universe.
Unreal is the first game that was so quality graphics-wise that its screenshot was published by Game.EXE magazine on the front cover in print quality. And indeed, it was a breakthrough: Unreal became known for raising the bar significantly in the use of 3D graphics; compared to its brethren in the genre, such as 1997’s Quake II, Unreal brought to light not only highly detailed interiors but also some of the most impressive landscapes created by that time in games.
The Unreal Engine pioneered many improvements in the graphics department, including color lighting. Although Unreal was not the first game to implement color lighting (Quake II had already used it), it was Unreal that first created a software renderer capable of doing almost everything hardware renderers of the time could do. This includes color lighting and even a stripped-down version of texture filtering.
However, as mentioned earlier, we will be looking more in-depth at Unreal Engine 5. It was announced on May 13, 2020, at Summer Game Fest, and Epic Games presented a demo on the PlayStation 5 console.
Twenty-five years have passed between the release of the first version of Unreal Engine and the creation of the Open 3D Engine. O3DE is a free and open-source 3D game engine developed by the Open 3D Foundation, a subsidiary of the Linux Foundation. O3DE is an “updated version” of the Amazon Lumberyard game engine and is distributed under Apache 2.0 license. The initial release of O3DE took place on July 6, 2021, while the stable release happened much more recently—on May 12, 2022.
Traditional gaming engines, such as Unity and Unreal Engine, are likely to play a significant role in the development of decentralized metaverses and the web3 industry. These engines provide powerful tools for creating and rendering 3D graphics, which are essential for building immersive virtual worlds. Additionally, they have a large developer community and a wealth of pre-existing assets that can be utilized in developing decentralized applications.
As the web3 ecosystem and decentralized metaverse continue to evolve, I think traditional gaming engines will adapt and continue to be a popular choice for developers building these types of experiences. With the rise of blockchain technology, these engines will also be used to create and run decentralized games and virtual worlds.Zach Hungate, Head of Gaming & VC Partner at Everyrealm
So, Unreal Engine 5…
Now, let’s go through these engines in more detail.
Unreal Engine 5 is the fifth generation of the original Unreal Engine. The engine has seen many improvements since its creation, but the core remains either unchanged or changed in Unreal modification models.
To understand what makes Unreal Engine 5 so great and why so many famous AAA projects want to use it, we need to go through the wrapper functions of all existing Unreal Engines:
1. In 1998, Unreal Engine 1 was one of the most versatile game engines in existence—it combined a graphics engine, a physics engine, artificial intelligence, file and network system management, and a ready-made development environment for games – UnrealEd. They were generally written in C++. Given the performance level of most computers of that time, the developers somewhat simplified some elements of the engine: the collision detection system, the network code, and the controller code for the player. Some of the technologies in Unreal Engine 1 were revolutionary for the time, for instance, using a dynamic scene graph. This technology made it possible to add a number of effects for overlaying on surfaces:
- Partially or completely mirrored surfaces.
- Warp technology – the ability to replace the image of one surface with a projection of the image onto another surface parallel to it.
- Skybox – projection onto the rendering surface from another point (which was usually placed in a small “box” with a superimposed sky texture, hence the name Skybox). Thus, the display is not the front face of the polygons, but the back, with the “sky” texture, applied to the object in advance.
2. In 1999, an improved version of the Unreal Engine (1.5) was released, designed for modern (at that time) computers and Dreamcast and PlayStation 2 consoles. Significant additions were made, including the support for facial animation for characters, the increase of maximum texture resolution to 1024×1024, an expandable “particle” system, and S3TC technology. The second version of the UnrealEd editor was also integrated. This version of the engine was used in the multiplayer shooter Unreal Tournament and the adventure game Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.
3. Unreal Engine 2 was released in 2002 with the advent of Unreal Tournament 2003, America’s Army: Operations, and Unreal Championship. The core and rendering engine were almost completely rewritten, and a new (third) version of the UnrealEd editor was integrated. In addition, the Karma physics subsystem was integrated into it, supporting ragdoll physics and other innovations, making it possible to achieve more realistic character behavior and interaction with the outside world. Other parts of the engine have also been improved or changed for better compatibility with the PlayStation 2, GameCube, and Xbox.
The following technologies were introduced:
- Liquid surface (fluid surface) – a flat object consisting of a large number of polygons, simulating the surface of a liquid.
- Foliage – objects generated to decorate the landscape (for example, grass).
- Support for VoIP – the ability to talk through a microphone with other players during the game.
- Speech recognition – voice is translated into text and processed as commands (for example, the ability to give voice commands to bots).
- More complex body physics “Karma” technology – processing the action on the body not as an action on one object but as an action on the skeleton (Ragdoll) with body parts attached to it.
- Ragdoll physics – despite the fact that the “skeletal” structure of objects was implemented in the first version of the engine, the possibility of using “ragdoll” physics appeared only with the transition to a new physical subsystem.
- Vehicles – the ability to process events from a third-party “actor” (“acting object”).
- EAX 3.0 is a 3D sound engine developed by Creative Labs.
4. In the version jokingly named Unreal Engine 2.5, the graphics engine was once again improved and optimized. Support for Direct3D 9, OpenGL 2, and Pixomatic appeared. It also used a rendering system for computers with a weak video card but a powerful central processor and added support for 64-bit Windows NT and GNU/Linux operating systems. The highest possible texture resolution has been raised to 4096×4096 pixels, and full Unicode support (16-bit) was added, which enabled the creation of fully localized games in Asian languages. In addition, the engine itself was significantly optimized, allowing for better performance with the same system requirements. It was compatible with videos in DivX and Bink format, with later versions introducing the SpeedTree tree creation system.
5. Screenshots of Unreal Engine 3 were published by July 2004, when the engine had already been in development for over 18 months. While based on older generations, the engine contained new features. “The main architectural decisions visible to OO programmers, the data-driven approach to scripting, and the rather modular approach to subsystems still remain (from Unreal Engine 1). But the parts of the game that are really visible to gamers—the visualizer, the physics system, the sound system, and the instruments—are all noticeably new and significantly more powerful,” Sweeney said. Unlike Unreal Engine 2, which still supported a fixed function pipeline, Unreal Engine 3 was designed to take advantage of fully programmable shader hardware. All lighting and shading calculations were done per pixel, not per vertex. In terms of rendering, Unreal Engine 3 provided support for a gamma-correct high dynamic range renderer.
What about other added and updated features:
- Added support for multi-threaded dynamic data loading (streaming), for example, loading a “location” directly when moving around it to save resources.
- The updated graphics engine supports most modern technologies, including HDR, per-pixel lighting, dynamic shadows, shader model 4, and geometry shaders.
- The physical subsystem Karma was abandoned and replaced with PhysX from AGEIA. Later, AGEIA released a set of additional libraries for the game, allowing you to use all the features of the physical system, such as the effect of “fluid” or tissue.
- The integrated animation engine FaceFX, developed by OC3 Entertainment, is responsible for the animation of the faces of the characters.
- Updated EAX version to 5th.
- Added support for SpeedTree technology for generating trees.
- Introduced a new UnrealEd editor, rewritten using wxWidgets.
Initially, Unreal Engine 3 only supported the Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 platforms. However, iOS and Android were added later in 2010, with the first games being Infinity Blade on iOS and Dungeon Defenders on Android.
6. Unreal Engine 3.5 saw another evolution of the graphics component. The Ambient occlusion post-processing filter was added to improve shadows and lighting. The number of processed characters in the frame was increased. The dynamic water surface technology was redesigned to a new level, and soft body physics and destructible environments were significantly improved. In March 2010, there was an announcement of new features, and the changes were presented at the Game Developers Conference 2010:
- One of the major innovations is the new Unreal Lightmass lighting system, which uses lossless global illumination features implemented in older lighting systems.
- Improved work with multiprocessor systems—distribution of tasks between multiprocessor systems using Unreal Swarm, as well as the faster compilation of C ++ code and processing of Unreal Script due to Unreal Build Tool.
- Added its own distribution tool for user-generated content—Unreal Content Browser, appeared Unreal Master Control Program—a new master server for updating clients and maintaining global statistics, already used in Gears of War 2. Epic Games China planned to demonstrate the use of the engine for massively multiplayer online games.
7. Epic presented Unreal Engine 4 to a limited audience at the 2012 Game Developers Conference. On June 7, 2012, a video demonstrating the engine by technical artist Alan Willard was released via GameTrailers TV. The main updates and innovations that were introduced include:
- Real-time global illumination using voxel cone tracing, eliminating precomputed lighting. However, this feature, called Sparse Voxel Octree Global Illumination (SVOGI) and demonstrated in the Elemental demo, was replaced by a similar but computationally less expensive algorithm due to performance issues.
- A new “Blueprints” visual scripting system that allows you to quickly develop game logic without using code, resulting in a smaller gap between technical artists, designers, and programmers.
8. And finally, Unreal Engine 5. It was first announced on May 13, 2020, and supports such hardware systems as PC, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Xbox, Series X/S, GameCube, Wii, Wii U, Nintendo Switch, Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita and OS such as macOS, Microsoft Windows, Linux, iOS, Android. It was released into Early Access on May 26, 2021, and officially launched to developers on April 5, 2022. The engine features two major new technologies: Lumen and Nanite.
- Lumen is a new dynamic global illumination technology. It eliminates the need for artists and developers to create a light map for a given scene. Instead, it calculates light reflections and shadows on the fly, allowing for the real-time behavior of light sources. Virtual Shadow Maps is another component added in Unreal Engine 5, described as a new shadow rendering method used to provide high-resolution consistent shading that works with cinematic quality assets and large open worlds with dynamic lighting.
- Nanite is one of the key technologies at the heart of the Unreal Engine 5 engine. It allows you to show as much geometry in the frame as the eye sees and depends on the resolution: The larger it is, the higher the detail becomes. Nanite’s virtualized geometry technology allows Epic to take advantage of the past acquisition of Quixel, the world’s largest photogrammetry library, as of 2019. The goal of Unreal Engine 5 was to make it as easy as possible for developers to create detailed game worlds without having to spend an inordinate amount of time creating new detailed assets. Nanite can import almost any other pre-existing 3D representation of objects and environments, including ZBrush and CAD models, allowing for cinematic-quality assets. Nanite automatically handles the levels of detail (LOD) of these imported objects according to the target platform and draw distance, a task that would otherwise have to be performed by an artist.
It should also be highlighted that Unreal Engine 5 includes all the features described above in previous versions.
Unreal Engine’s Nanite mesh has been a game changer for the past couple of years. With the foliage update in 5.1, we’ve been able to bring a high-fidelity environment without the expenses. It’s getting easier to create high-fidelity experiences, and we should start seeing more AAA-like games incorporate digital asset ownership and wallet functionality.Christopher Lee, Founder of Madoath.
Let’s move on to the second contender – O3DE.
To start with, O3DE has all the features that Unreal Engine 4 has. While you might not have heard of O3DE, you can confidently believe that it is as good as everyone’s favorite Unreal Engine 4 that has stood the test of time.
However, the first major difference is that O3DE has a completely different structure. It carries through a heavily improved and ported experience from Amazon’s Lumberyard engine. The developers kept the details that customers liked the most at Lumberyard and significantly reworked the rest.
Since game engines tend to be monolithic, the O3DE team strongly leaned towards making its engine modular and extensible, embracing open standards tools from the start. They also added a new build system, an extensible user interface, lots of new cloud features, lots of math library optimizations, new networking features, and too many performance improvements to mention here. They have also added a brand new PBR renderer capable of Forward+ and deferred rendering with ray tracing and GI support.
Now, let’s consider O3DE functionalities in more detail. The first thing to start with is Gem technology (this function is the modularity of this project). Gems are packages that contain code and/or assets to extend your O3DE projects. With the Gem system, you can choose the features and assets you need for your project without including unnecessary components. You can also create your own gems to contain a collection of assets, extend the editor, or design gameplay features and logic for your project.
There are two types of gems in O3DE:
- Code Gem: contains assets and code that performs certain functions on assets.
- Assets Gem: contains only assets and does not contain code.
Gems come from three different sources:
- O3DE Standard Gems: Gems that are considered part of the O3DE core. All standard O3DE gems are available in O3DE.
- Third-Party Gems: Gems provided by third-party developers.
- Custom Gems: Gems that your team creates.
O3DE uses CMake to create build files, manage dependencies, test, and automate code generation. While most custom build systems make it difficult to cross-platform, CMake is deliberately designed to use shared configuration files and generate project files for a specific toolchain and then run native builds. The O3DE build system has the following advantages:
- Your project is created and built using your native IDE and toolchain.
- Proper dependency trees for build targets are built and maintained, keeping build targets clean.
- Robust support for creating and running automated tests.
- Use debugging and profiling tools like “Edit and Continue” if supported by the compiler tools.
Also, O3DE uses the Atom physical renderer. Atom is a cross-platform, modular, data-driven, and multi-threaded renderer that can be extended to suit various visual and performance needs. Some of its features include:
- Support for Forward+ and deferred rendering.
- Multithreaded. Rendering processes run on the CPU and GPU.
- Modular structure allows you to develop multiple rendering paths.
- Support for DirectX 12, Vulkan and Metal Graphics API.
- Optimized Forward+ cluster shading model with discrete passes that gives you more control over the final Atom result.
- The AZSL shader language is a flexible extension of HLSL, allowing you to write your own shaders with familiar syntax.
- Global illumination for every mesh and material with MSAA/SSAO/SSR support.
- Hardware accelerated real-time ray tracing.
- High-resolution cube reflection maps.
- An abstraction of the pipelined interface, allowing, regardless of the platform, to create Forward +, Deferred or hybrid renderers through the pass system. Supports Forward+ by default.
- Support for parallax correction, blended reflections per render pass, and runtime editing and rendering for lighting artists.
- No restrictions on custom render passes.
In O3DE, you have two scripting environments for creating runtime logic: a visual scripting tool called Script Canvas and the more traditional Lua scripting model. With Script Canvas, you can create flow graph scripts by placing and connecting functional nodes in a visual editor without the need for programming. Script Canvas allows you to experiment and iterate quickly and provides a simple yet powerful starting point for new developers. Thanks to Lua, O3DE supports a well-established scripting language and the ability to use the editor of your choice. You don’t have to choose one or the other; you can use both Script Canvas and Lua in your projects and even within the same entity.
O3DE supports a set of standard physics solutions that can be used to add realism to actors and environments and render simulations. O3DE supports the following simulation SDKs:
- NVIDIA PhysX: Create static and dynamic rigid bodies, dynamic connections, and forces like wind and gravity. PhysX can also test overlaps, triggers, shapecasts, and raycasts.
- NVIDIA Cloth: Create clothing and fabrics that realistically respond to animated objects and physical forces. NVIDIA Cloth has robust support for per-vertex colliders, constraints, and cloth data for high-resolution, multi-layer cloth simulation calculations.
- AMD TressFX: Create hair and fur using hair guides and grooming data that realistically respond to animated objects and physical forces.
O3DE uses the “White Box” tool for quick-level creation, allowing you to quickly sculpt and manipulate geometric volumes to sketch your world in the engine.
O3DE offers a code generator based on Jinja2 templates, allowing the quick generation of boilerplate code or large amounts of similar data. Some of the code generator features include:
- Data-driven model based on XML or JSON input.
- Fully integrated into the CMake build system.
- Rules for matching and replacing regular expressions and wildcards, allowing you to configure support for bulk file processing.
- O3DE projects are managed using JSON configuration files and the CMake build system, making it easy to create custom management tools or develop and distribute your own settings as Gems. Gems can add new features to your projects with a single line of JSON.
- A JSON handle to the contents of the Gem, included components, and libraries.
- Python scripts with support for basic project management from the command line.
The entire Open 3D Engine is supported by a high-performance math library designed to utilize modern CPU capabilities for fast and accurate calculations.
- Libraries use optimal SIMD code for x64 SSE and ARM Neon platforms and fallback scalar code where optimization is unavailable.
- SIMD-accelerated trigonometric functions that are faster than equivalent scalar operations and capable of performing multiple trigonometric calculations in a single call.
O3DE supports industry-standard resource file formats and provides a unified resource processor. O3DE includes the following asset-handling features:
- Assets and asset manifests use JSON formatting, which provides more potential for scripting and automation.
- Unified grid format for actors, static and dynamic objects.
- Optimized runtime resources for streaming on modern graphics hardware.
- Support for non-blocking asynchronous loading of any type of resource.
- Asset developers can be written with Python.
The O3DE editor and tools offer support for extensions through Python 3. Create your own editor components, automate processes, and extend your development environment. With Python scripting support in O3DE, you get:
- Extensions with access to the Qt UX library used by the O3DE editor and tools.
- Asset builder customization, including pre- and post-processing steps.
- Custom behavior when handling mesh, images, and materials, allowing you to separate, assign and move assets.
O3DE has a high-performance networking gem that gives you the features you need for reliable communications and servers. Network features include:
- Highly flexible, low-latency TCP/UDP transport layer abstracted behind a simplified API.
- Support for encryption and compression with a built-in latency, jitter, reordering, and loss simulator.
- Object replication using out-of-order, unreliable data replication for the lowest possible latency.
- Support for hosted player models and dedicated servers.
- Local prediction delay compensation with inverse negotiation for server privileges.
- Customizable player behavior that supports automatic desync detection and fix.
So, as you understand, the killer features of O3DE are what make it possible to compare this brand-new engine to the great and mighty Unreal Engine. And to be honest, just reading and gathering information about these two projects—O3DE looks more user-friendly. However, this is only at first glance, so let’s find out what is easier to use and where the entry threshold is lower.
We see a bright future for traditional game engines in Web3 games and decentralized Metaverse worlds. Based on our conversations with teams building in the space, we have come across a considerable number of AAA-quality games and Metaverse worlds built on Unreal and Unity. In the last year, the demand for both engines has escalated, leading to a shortage of experienced developers.
We are also seeing a gradual increase in the usage of other new gaming engines like Open 3D engine as it provides similar support for AAA games but with greater ease of access and support for a wide array of programming languages.
Over the next few years, we might see these new engines increase their market share, but the traditional ones would continue to dominate the market.Samarth Ahuja, Head of Ventures at Rising Capital
Let’s start with the fact that both engines support AAA projects, but what about the entry level if I want to start game development?
Programming language: for versions of Unreal Engine 4 and above, this is C ++ (formerly UnrealScript – Sweeney’s authentic language). While C++ does not offer the ease of use other programming languages like Python do, it is faster. And speed is exactly what games and models need. On the other hand, Open 3D Engine supports C++, Python, and Lua, meaning that if you know at least one of these languages, you will already be able to work with the application. This is in favor of O3DE.
Now, let’s have a look at the operating systems on which Unreal and O3DE can be used. It is immediately clear the scales tip in favor of Unreal is that it supports almost all (if not all) OS and hardware platforms. Meanwhile, O3DE, at the moment, supports only Windows and Linux.
Tools-wise, it is clear that the main goal of O3DE is to attract people and build a community due to the low entry threshold and ease of getting started and further use. Unreal Engine, with its many years of experience, also boasts ease of use. While O3DE was with users in mind, there is a huge, already existing Unreal community, with thousands and thousands of tutorials on using Unreal. If you encounter any problems using Unreal, the community will help you more than the nascent O3DE community. It is impossible to ignore the gigantic difference in the age of these projects and make a blot on it.
Therefore, in the end, it’s a draw, perhaps a little more in favor of Unreal, at this stage of development of both projects.
Projects and people involved
Let’s start with the fact that Unreal Engines 1,2,3,4 and 5 are mostly used only for games; while Unreal can be used for rendering something, the engine was created for game development. Unreal’s “track record” is really great; it includes more than 1,000 registered projects, including a huge number of cult ones.
However, for the sake of our comparison, we should consider only games that have been built on Unreal Engine 5, with some of these titles still in production: Fortnite, The Matrix Awakens, Abandoned, Ark II, Black Myth: Wukong, Hell Is Us, Kingdom Hearts IV, Off The Grid, Payday 3, Redfall, Rennsport, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl, The Day Before, Wronged Us, ArcheAge II, Gears 6, Mictlan: An Ancient Mythical Tale, Ashes of Creation, Avowed, Dragon Quest XII: The Flames of Fate, Dreamhouse: The Game, Echoes Of The End, Game of Thrones, ILL, Instinction, Into the Echo, Legend of Ymir, Mafia IV, Project M, Project RYU, Quantum Error, Rooted, Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II, Shadow of Conspiracy: Section 2, The Witcher 4, Tomb Raider, Vigilance 2099.
Half of these games are continuations of popular game series awaited by fans around the world, such as Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II and The Witcher 4. It is also worth mentioning that there is information about the release of such games as LifeLeech and I.G.I. origins. All projects listed are AAA. Since the fifth generation of the engine was quite recent, most of the games above (apart from Fortnite and The Matrix Awakens) won’t be released before 2023.
You just look at the graphics that can be pulled from Unreal Engine 5. It really can be called a new era of graphics in games (and not only graphics!):
Figure 1,2,3: Unreal Engine 5 graphics demo. Source: Unreal Engine.
Figure 4,5: Unreal Engine 5 graphics demo. Source: Unreal Engine.
The only problem with such realistic and great graphics is their inaccessibility. Unfortunately, few casual gamers have computers that can run games at the highest resolution, meaning game companies need to reduce the level of graphics to increase throughput.
Now let’s talk about graphics and games on the Open 3D Engine.
Of course, O3DE does not have such a long history, accumulated prestige, and recognition as our previous contender, but it offers a product of no less quality. Projects to consider include New World, Deadhaus Sonata, and Ozone Metaverse. Since there are still so few projects using this engine, we need to consider those that do more carefully.
Let’s start with Ozone Metaverse, a toolkit built on the Flow blockchain for building metaverses. The project is codeless; that is, you do not need to write code to build content. This is a metaverse that allows you to create and customize other metaverses of different sizes; you can design an entire world or just one room. This kind of engagement and adoption of Web3 is a huge advantage for O3DE as more games and metaverses are being created on the blockchain and taking over the industry. Moreover, such projects need an engine that is easy to use, whether we’re talking about creating games or other projects. Web3 projects are often just motley teams, not companies, and blockchain implementation is difficult in itself.
Deadhaus Sonata is a AAA game that is already planned on Steam. The game looks beautiful, dark, and interesting; I’m sure that at maximum settings, it will look worthy of being called AAA. New World is a game in early development (there is not even a trailer). Judging by the site, the lore is already ready; at this moment, nothing more can be said.
Figure 6,7: Open 3D Engine graphics demo. Source: AWS Amazon.
Figure 8,9: Open 3D Engine graphics demo (Dead Haus Sonata). Source: Dead Haus Sonata.
Looking at the proposed graphics and in-game behavior of the characters of both engines, it becomes clear that Unreal wins, but these tests are at maximum settings. Looking at the implementation, most likely, the maximum settings on the Open 3D Engine will be equal to the medium or high settings on the Unreal Engine 5. However, the question is: Do players who are still using versions 1 and 2 of Nvidia cards need more? Games should have a balance in terms of graphics quality and bandwidth, but we won’t know how well both projects cope with this task until more projects are released.
As for those who use these engines, Unreal Engine 5 is mostly used by big game studios. The implementation of this engine requires a lot of resources and time, but the result is worth it. O3DE has two out of three projects supported by Amazon (O3DE’s main partner), and the third one is created by an independent team. However, O3DE is actively working to attract individuals.
Figure 10: Number of users on Unreal Engine 5. Source: https://programace.com/blog/unity-vs-unreal/
In terms of usage percentage, O3DE is still far behind Unreal Engine, but given the partners and the speed of development of O3DE, in two to five years, they can catch up with Unreal Engine in terms of usage.
Undoubtedly, competition has always inspired development. Despite the presence of such titans as Unreal Engine and Unity, Blender is starting to compete with other tools, such as O3DE and Godot 4.0 (in the alpha stage), and each of them has its own unique advantages.
In my opinion, Unity and Unreal are quickly gaining competition that has a lower entry threshold and is developed much quicker. I’m particularly pleased with the emergence of ready-made SDKs for engines, as they can connect any project with any EVM and allow you to create native NFTs and interact with IPFS.
I also see strong pushes toward the development of game AI in the near future. The technology is becoming increasingly progressive, with more tools being implemented so that things that are not controlled by a game character will be even more realistic. Together with AR augmented reality technology, AI will further accelerate the gamification of real world and the creation of metauniverses.Sergei Sergeenko, CTO at Satoshi Universe
Who is behind the projects?
Apart from the fact that Epic Games is a giant gaming company, and Tim Sweeney himself is a genius, Epic Games has such outstanding partners as Disney, WPP, BMW Group, Havas Media, Vectorworks, Moose Toys, WARNER BROS., Hasbro, Battery, OnePlus, Audiokinetic, Jazwares, Zero Density, etc.
What about O3DE? Everything looks excellent at this point. Apart from the fact that AWS (essentially Amazon) is the main partner of the Open 3D Foundation, O3DE has such prominent partners as AccelByte, Adobe, Apocalypse Studios, Audiokinetic, AWS, Backtrace.io, Carbonated, Futurewei, GAMEPOCH, Genvid Technologies, Hadean, HERE Technologies, Huawei, Intel, International Game Developers Association, KitBash3D, Kythera AI, Niantic, Open Robotics, PopcornFX, Red Hat, Rochester Institute of Technology, SideFX, Tafi, TLM Partners and Wargaming, and more recently (drum roll, please) Epic Games. That means the two engines that we are discussing will interact with each other as partners.
As we have seen in the diagram above, Unreal Engine does not take first or even second place in terms of the number of users; it still has room to grow. The same goes for O3DE.
So, given that there are still very few projects that would use either of the engines (speaking of Unreal Engine 5 and O3DE), it is difficult to compare the quality of games that they can provide at maximum, medium, and minimum capabilities. Some conclusions can already be drawn right, though. While both engines have a low entry threshold, O3DE is slightly more user-friendly as it was created with the unprepared user in mind. Both engines support AAA projects, but according to preliminary data, the level of graphics will be higher on Unreal Engine 5. Both projects have a high level of realistic animation of in-game characters as well as the general physics of the game. Similarly, both have the latest features in the industry, from ray tracing to artificial intelligence; they have a gigantic background in terms of partners and have also become partners. All this can have a very positive impact on the capture of the market.
Open 3D Engine VS Unreal Engine 5 21
- https://aws.amazon.com/ru/about-aws/whats-new/2021/12/aws-partners-open-3d-foundation-first-stable-open-3d-engine/#:~:text=As the successor to Amazon,Futurewei%2C GAMEPOCH%2C Genvid Technologies%2C
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