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Epic Games, Inc. has released the June 2011 UDK Beta, the free edition of Unreal Engine 3 that provides access to the award-winning toolset used in blockbuster video games, 3D visualizations, digital films and more. June 2011 UDK Beta Upgrade Notes
New Foliage Editor
- Quickly paint instanced foliage and decoration using the new foliage system.
- Meshes and settings to be used by the foliage painting tool can be set up in the foliage editor, which is enabled through the Foliage Mode button in the toolbox.
- Foliage instance types can specify a landscape layer name for weighting. If you set this, foliage panted on landscape will have its density modulated by the weight of the specified layer.
- Foliage painting can now be used for altitude-based painting as well.
- New map templates let you immediately configure lighting for day, night, dawn or sunset.
- Simply drag the appropriate thumbnail from the Unreal Content Browser into a level to populate settings and achieve the desired lighting effect.
- Map templates are fully customizable, too!
Mobile Workflow and Lighting Improvements
- Lighting is now easier to implement for PC and mobile games.
- Dominant lights are now baked into light maps for mobile.
- Light shafts can now be activated on light mapped lights.
- Gamma correction for mobile is now supported, providing the ability to have a consistent look across platforms.
- UDK now ships with one single editor and game content tree for both PC games and mobile games!
- Share gameplay logic and assets between PC and mobile more easily.
- New in-editor mobile preview mode: Preview your PC level with mobile features instantly with a simple tool bar toggle.
- Mobile Previewer now has presets for iPad 2. This is a new option in the drop-down menu.
- There is a new 'Always Optimize Content for Mobile' editor preference, which forces PVRTC compression and flattening, providing high-quality textures when previewing on mobile devices.
- A guide to migrating mobile projects from previous versions of UDK to the June UDK Beta is available now as well.
Simplygon Static Mesh Reduction
- Simplygon is used to automatically generate game-ready Level of Detail models (LODs) for a specific pixel resolution.
- Simplygon uses a proprietary mesh reduction method that retains geometrical LOD integrity and visual quality of LOD switching, producing AutoLODs that can directly be used inside triple-A games.
- Unreal Engine 3 leverages Simplygon to provide high-quality mesh reduction without having to leave the Unreal Editor.
- Developers can quickly simplify meshes, generate LODs, and immediately see the results in their maps.
Unreal Kismet Debugger
- It is now possible to visualize Kismet node activation, set breakpoints that pause execution when nodes are activated, and step through sequences while running PIE!
- With this brand new Kismet debugger, you can:
- Visualize the flow of your Kismet sequence while your game is running.
- Debug issues where nodes are being activated in the wrong order, not at the right time, not at all, or too much.
- Step through your sequences one frame at a time and set breakpoints.
- The Kismet debugger controls are located in the Kismet toolbar.
- Enabling the Kismet Debugger is done through the Enable Kismet Debugging button in the main editor toolbar.
Profiling, Performance, and Memory Improvements
- Major memory and performance optimizations ship with the June UDK Beta.
- The STAT UNITGRAPH command provides easy in-game visualization of performance data, making problem areas easy to detect during play.
- Gameplay Profiler improvements include:
- You can now see time spent in native cycle counter scopes on the game thread.
- Data types are color-coded, so its easy to distinguish levels, actors, script functions, and so on.
- The Gameplay Profiler can now display an asset associated with an actor or component.
- Unreal Landscape now supports decals, which makes it possible to add dynamic effects such as tire tracks or footsteps to surfaces.
- Landscape now has a custom texture brush that enables you to control the shape of the brush using a texture. Paint layer weights, noise, etc. with a brush of any shape.
- A preview of the texture in use is now displayed with brush settings.
- The Height Fog shader has been optimized.
- Editor Preferences have been moved to the main menu bar for easy access!