I find the term Early Access confusing for this release of UE5. It’s usually a term reserved for games that are still in production and that aren’t finished yet and I’m not sure why it was chosen for a major Unreal Engine release instead of using terms that are standard in the video game industry for engines (Alpha, Beta, Release). I’ve been using UE4 since the day that it was first publicly released (Alpha and then Beta and then full Release). I’ve started projects using the UE4 Alpha version and then updated the engine as newer versions became available up to the most recent release.
I would like to get some clarification about the following topics:
1 - Will there be regular updates for the UE5 engine released through the launcher until 2022 when it’s officially launched, or is this version the only one that will be available until that date, meaning that this version is a tech demo that we can play with until an official Alpha is released (the way the announcement is worded, makes me think that this is a possibility)?
2 – Is it safe to start a new project using UE5 and then update it, and adapt it until a full release version of UE5 is released, dealing with the bugs while being aware that this version is not final (just like when UE4 became publicly available - from Alpha to Release)?
3 – I’ve converted one of my newer project and so far it seems that it’s running perfectly with the addition of Lumen and Nanite. Any reasons why I shouldn’t just continue using UE5? My project won’t be completed until at least 2 years. Is it safe for me to start building it using UE5 or should I anticipate that there will be some major changes along the road that will force me to scrap everything and start from scratch (e.g. major map format change, Blueprint tech becoming obsolete and replaced by Verse, backward incompatibility with the Early Access version)?
4 – UE5 is not production ready. What does this mean exactly? Does it mean that it’s buggy or that if someone starts a project with this “Early Access” version, they can expect that they won’t be able to upgrade to newer versions in the future (official release in 2022, but what exactly will be released in 2022, the Alpha version)?