Unreal Engine 5 Early Access released to public with magical sample

Today Epic Games released Unreal Engine 5 Early Access. In this next-generation engine, Epic hopes to move beyond boundaries, to "empower creators across all industries to deliver stunning real-time content and experiences." The company still suggests this engine is for "game developers" – but given what we're seeing here, it's more evident than ever that Epic is ready to roll into the next generation of virtual experiences and entertainment.

In the video below you'll see Chance Ivey, Senior Technical Designer at Epic Games and Galen Davis, Producer/Evangelist for Quixel at Epic Games take a peek at the first tools available for Unreal Engine 5 in Unreal Engine 5 Early Access. You'll see the sample Valley of the Ancient – also available for all users of the Unreal Engine 5 Early Access package.

The full release of Epic Games 5 is expected to take place in early 2022. Epic Games suggested this week that they'll "use Unreal Engine in production before we expect you to," and will put their money where their mouth is by shipping Fortnite on Unreal Engine on all supported platforms.

Unreal Engine is expected to be launched with "many memory, performance, and quality improvements." Epic also suggested this week that they'll be dropping "new features that will benefit creators in all industries."

You can access the full Unreal Engine 5 release notes (for this Early Access build) right now, along with content and samples and a migration guide.

To gain access to Unreal Engine 5 Early Access, you'll eant to drop in on the Unreal Engine access page. Note that Epic Games suggests that people brand NEW to Unreal Engine start with Unreal Engine 4.26, then move on once the basics are understood. Unreal Engine 5 Early Access includes a Valley of the Ancient sample project in the Epic Games Launcher for your perusal.