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Unreal makes major upgrades with 4.5 release

Epic Games releases a big upgrade to its engine technology, with a slew of fixes and improvements; more than 40 were contributed from developers outside the company.
Epic Games has released Unreal Engine 4.5, which adds a large number of fixes and upgrades to the engine -- covering everything from C++ performance to tutorials, console and mobile support, and 2D physics and 3D art. One of the biggest new features is automatic C++ hot reloading, which will allow developers to make changes in Visual Studio or Xcode and then reload their projects in realtime from within the Unreal editor itself. There are also upgrades to the engine's UI and animation systems, new ray-traced shadows, and screen-space subsurface scattering. The company has also put in "targeted improvements" to help "complex online games" pass console certification tests. Over 40 of the upgrades, fixes, and features were contributed by developers outside of Epic. Epic has posted on its forum with an extensive look at the raft of improvements that come with Unreal 4.5; it's also worth noting that subscribers can get incremental updates and live source code access whenever they want. If you're still on the fence about whether Unreal Engine 4 is worth your while, company founder Tim Sweeney laid out the case to Gamasutra in March.

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