It feels like UE4 has lost it's potential..

Alright, let’s see… Unreal Engine. The one that I could always rely on for being light on my average PC, which allowed me to actually play. Keep in mind, this post is reactional, so don’t expect any amount of sense… but, nonetheless, I feel the need to express my dissapointments with the engine.

Before you comment:

**YES this is an optimization rant

YES this is me bickering about the development priorities at Epic**

I’ve been following it for a good few months now. I downloaded it well before then, but it was only then that I began actively watching the developer’s decisions etc etc. By that time, though, it was abundantly clear that UE4 had some bugs and issues to deal with. I understand, this is a work in progress kind of thing and these things take time. So, I waited and waited, to finally be able to try out the engine without running it at bare-minimum specs (it’s impossible to play like this-- with 3d resolution set all the way to 0, it’s impossible to see enemies.

So, I either deal with unfavorably low FPS, or deal with impossible gameplay that relies on me watching what pixel moves fastest. I shouldn’t have to make this decision.

It should be easy by now to optimize games in a way that more money-wise gamers could enjoy them. Apparently not? The Source Engine has been out for YEARS, and Valve still uses it for games such as CS:GO and Dota 2. Why? Because people can run it. Apparently, Epic doesn’t understand this, and puts prettiness over quality of content and stability/performance.

Also, the editing software is garbage. I won’t go into further detail, because what has already been said, shouldn’t have to be said again.

Well, maybe one thing: What the Source Engine does right, the UE4 engine does horribly, horribly wrong.

Just my two cents. I can hear the fanboys miles away screaming.

Nonsense. My 286 can’t handle the Source Engine.

I am not quite suire if this rant is relating to the UE4 development tools or games developed in the UE4 engine?
If it is about the games, then what games in particular as i am sure there are others using the engine which your computer would be capable of playing.

Source is old and outdated (kinda). but can you run the editor of Unity or CryEngine?

“so don’t expect any amount of sense” <- the conclusion of your text

Those games are built for the widest possible audiences and are built to run on hardware that is now 10-15 years old - CS:GO looks like a game from the mid-2000s as a result - compare the following two in-game screenshots:

One of those games is CS:GO, the other is Call of Duty 4, a game from 9 years ago. You’ll notice that there isn’t much difference between them from a technical standpoint. I’d personally argue that Call of Duty 4 actually looks better in a number of respects, particularly animation and lighting.

If you want to make a game that runs on 15 year old hardware, then Unreal Engine 4 isn’t for you, it’s for people developing games for current high-end hardware. Fortunately, Epic does have an engine for previous generation hardware that is also free to download and use (UDK / Unreal Engine 3).

Well not everyone here is a devout UE4 fanboy, certainly not every UDK dev. (Read some of Tegleg’s posts etc)
Vehicles & physics need more love, and there are things that are missing that could make UE4 an ‘engine slayer’…
Dynamic-Terrain and in-editor level-design tools like LY could really help (even Unity offers more dyn terrain features).

But UE4 has improved substantially and that’s worth shouting out. 4.10 marked a serious improvement in my world…
I couldn’t run the engine for 2 years w/o random crashes even just doing editor fly-throughs (plus FPS was often < 10)!
I had reasonable hardware, UE4 should have run the basic demos. It was really frustrating even with a free license!
Routinely you’d be advised to update drivers / hardware, roll-out some patches, tweak settings etc as if that was the fix.
I sneered at the advice at the time as my rigs were stable. Games ran well and UDK & Unity development was going well.

What’s interesting now is that I can tell that its UE4 itself that has really improved in terms of in stability / performance…
Kudos to Epic for the hard work, because its really paid off. If I had changed H/W or S/W maybe I wouldn’t have noticed!
UE4 is still about good hardware GPU, Mem, CPU etc. It makes sense in a which-game-engine-is-best-for-what kind of way.
Its a higher-tiered game engine. Acknowledging that and knowing you get better visuals helps distinguish UE4 from Unity.

But you can always look into Unity anyway, as it runs on practically anything and it may yield ‘good enough’ results for you…
UDK is also an option too as was mentioned above. Its still a great engine and a decent halfway point between the others.
But the problem is there’s no updates / source (UE3 licensing is prohibitive) and the coding / rendering is slightly outdated.

Just to add to what was stated above, the Source engine is still based on BSP technology, which has been around since Doom.

Essentially, it relies on heavy pre-processing on the maps, which gives great performance but doesn’t allow for very dynamic environments, and it makes it impossible to use tech like streaming and origin shifting to create large open worlds. It’s an engine originally designed for corridor fps shooters, and while it has been repurposed for other types of games, you’re still limited in scope. You couldn’t do an open-world game for example, it would have to be very heavily instanced.

The other main reason for its great performance is simply that it doesn’t have all the newer dx11/dx12 features that UE4 has. Even at its best, it still looks very dated as Ambershee pointed out.

UE4 is supposed to be the next generation platform for AAA and indie developers. It needs to be flexible and powerful, and unfortunately that means sacrificing performance on older hardware to a certain degree. If it tried to do what Source is doing, then they would lose out to other cutting edge engines and nobody would use it.

That’s a killer argument only trolls are using, to put down every counter argumentation.

As already stated, the UE4 editor is not made to run on low end PCs. You can find the system requirements here:

My old system was on the lower end of these specs (Windows 8 instead of 7) and everything was running well.

What are you trying to do and what are your specs?

So your PC runs UE3 era games but is getting a bit old and struggling with UE4 and that causes you to put your first ever post on the Unreal dev forum saying that UE4 is a disappointment…because your PC isn’t good enough to run it. I can’t see how any of what you said has any relevance other than your PC isn’t a high enough spec.

then you insult Epic cause obviously you know more about the games industry business than the big gaming company who’s been making games and money for probably longer than you’ve been alive, then knowing full well everything you just said was nonsense and people will tell you this that you preempt it by basically saying anyone who disagrees with you is obviously a fan boy…

If your PC isn’t good enough to run it, why would you think waiting months and months it would be any different. It’s nothing to do with optimization. Maybe if I wait a few years they might optimise it enough to run on my Spectrum 48k going off that logic. I’m afraid Mr Money-Wise gamer you might have to actually buy some newer hardware, sorry that’s the PC market for you, it’s not cheap to keep up with the times but unfortunately that’s the way it is. This is why consoles were invented, buy one of them, or are you still using a PSone and complaining that GTA5 should be optimised to work on it.

This sentence:

“impossible to play like this-- with 3d resolution set all the way to 0, it’s impossible to see enemies.”

Makes me think that this sentence:

“Also, the editing software is garbage. I won’t go into further detail, because what has already been said, shouldn’t have to be said again”

is a total fabrication of your mind and you’ve never even used it or have the slightest clue what you are on about. 3d resolution set to 0…you’re just making words up now. How did you put the draw distance to 0 in the engine because there certainly isn’t the option to go to 0 in the scaleability settings? Guess you set it with a console command…yeah right cause you did…and if you did…you set it 0…and then wondered why you couldn’t see anything.

pure trolling click bait, every sentence.

If that’s your 2 cents, I feel I’ve been ripped off.

We need to see some specifications of the computer before we can talk about optimization for you, I am a bread. That said, correct me if i’m wrong guys, but wasn’t there a way to reduce graphics quality to old school standards? Isn’t it possible to run the mobile game version on pc?

It’s <Current Year> why does this large, complex software not run on <insert machine clearly below recommended spec>?

It’s <Current Year>, why do we still have to put in effort to make games?

It’s <Current Year>, where is my push-button solution?

It’s <Current Year>, why haven’t they optimized UE4 to run on a toaster?

Unreal Tournament runs well and looks pretty even on lower end hardware. It’s possible.

make a level with similar polycount and simple materials / static lighting like source engine, and it will probably run like source engine. If you want something that is using much higher poly assets, with more complicated materials… you gotta save cash and upgrade!

Here is UE4 running a source map, but still with some dynamic lights and shadows. Also in editor, would run faster outside.


Not exactly. Could be improved, but everything could be improved anyway. Though it is garbage? Nah.

Also, here is what you do not understand. Just because a game runs smooth on your computer, does not mean it’s editor will aswell. The Game I at the moment package takes 4 seconds to open. 1 second after the first opening. But the editor opens up in 1 minute? There is something fishy, and I hope you get it eventually.