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Let's start with the biggest story of the week:

Unreal Engine 5 video announcement
I was so blown away that I livestreamed my reaction to this. There's two major technologies on show: Lumen and Nanite.

Lumen is real-time light bouncing, without the need for ray-tracing. This wizardry is made possible by a more efficient way of tracing light: Screen-space for small detail, "mesh signed distance field" for medium detail, and voxels for large scale detail. This article gives more info.

Nanite is "infinite geometry". Rather than needing to create multiple LODs (meshes of different detail levels), Nanite needs only a high-res model and then decimates it in real-time. Sounds too good to be true, so we'll see!

How might UE5 change the industry? While ray-tracing is exciting, it's simply too demanding for most gamer's hardware. I suspect Lumen will help bridge the gap over the next decade while hardware catches up. It should allow us artists to light an entire scene just once and let the tech do the rest for the user (Lumen for lite users and proper ray-tracing for high-end). Nanite should speed up asset creation (no LODs, yay!) while also reducing the need for normal and glossy maps for high-res geometry. Exciting times!

Great youtube series on design theory
If you've ever wanted to learn what makes an image "interesting", this series is one of the best resources. It's 10 videos, each 10 minutes long, tackling topics like shape language, simplification, texture, colour and more. It's aimed at painting, but most of the lessons are applicable to any art form (even photography!).

Complete Beginner Chair Modelling Series now online
If you're the sort of person who likes to wait for a series to end before starting, well now's your chance! All 10 parts of my beginner modelling tutorial are now uploaded and ready to watch. By the end you'll know the fundamental skills to modelling hard and curved objects, AND you'll have made your own chair :)

Beautiful animation: Assassin's Creed Valhalla Trailer
I rarely watch game trailers for the game. I watch it because it's pretty much the only feature quality animation for adults. Maybe someday studios will take a chance in that genre, but for now I'll keep watching these trailers. Magnificent work on this one, Digik Studio.

Follow me on twitter for more interesting stuff that doesn't make it here: @andrewpprice.

Andrew Price

PS. Check out the new top Poliigon renders from last month:
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