Unreal Engine 5.3 Preview Released

Unreal Engine 5.3 Preview
Mohamed Fawzy

Written by Mohamed Fawzy

Mohamed is the founder of SALAMA PRODUCTIONS ©, an indie game developer and writer. He has a passion for creating episodic cinematic games that combine stunning graphics and captivating stories. His vision is to showcase the beauty and mystery of nature and reality. He believes that games are a powerful medium for expressing ideas, emotions, and messages that can inspire and entertain people around the world.

July 29, 2023

What’s New in Unreal Engine 5.3

Epic Games has released a preview version of Unreal Engine 5.3, the latest update of its popular real-time 3D creation tool. The new version brings significant improvements and new features for developers and artists, such as enhanced lighting, geometry, and ray tracing systems, new tools for creating realistic hair and fur, and new frameworks for importing and exporting large landscapes and generating procedural content .

Lumen, Nanite, and Path Tracer

Unreal Engine 5.3 introduces major enhancements to the software’s Lumen, Nanite, and Path Tracer features, which were first introduced in Unreal Engine 5 Early Access.

Lumen is a fully dynamic global illumination solution that reacts to scene and light changes in real time, creating realistic and believable lighting effects. In Unreal Engine 5.3, Lumen supports multiple bounces of indirect lighting, volumetric fogtranslucent materials, and sky light.

Nanite is a virtualized micropolygon geometry system that enables users to create and render massive amounts of geometric detail without compromising performance or quality. In Unreal Engine 5.3, Nanite supports skeletal meshesanimationmorph targetslevel of detail (LOD), and collision detection.

Path Tracer is a physically accurate ray tracing solution that simulates the behavior of light in complex scenes, producing photorealistic images. In Unreal Engine 5.3, Path Tracer supports LumenNanitetranslucencysubsurface scatteringclear coat, and anisotropy.

Hair and Fur Grooming

Unreal Engine 5.3 also introduces new tools for creating high-fidelity hair and fur for digital characters and creatures. Users can import hair grooms from external applications such as Maya or Blender, or create them from scratch using the new Hair Strands Editor. Users can also edit the hair properties such as color, thickness, clumping, waviness, and curliness using the new Hair Material Editor.

Unreal Engine 5.3 also supports rendering hair and fur using either rasterization or ray tracing methods. Users can choose the best option for their project depending on the desired quality and performance.

World Building Tools

Unreal Engine 5.3 offers new world building tools that enable users to work on large open worlds collaboratively and efficiently. One of the new features is World Partition, which automatically divides the world into a grid and streams only the necessary cells based on the camera position and visibility. Users can also import and export large landscapes using the new Landscape Heightfield IO framework.

Another new feature is the Procedural Content Generation (PCG) framework, which enables users to define rules and parameters to populate scenes with Unreal Engine assets of their choice. Users can also control the placement, orientation, scale, rotation, and variation of the assets using the new Procedural Placement Tool.

Experimental Features in Unreal Engine 5.3 Preview

Unreal Engine 5.3 also includes a number of new experimental features that introduce new capabilities for rendering, animation, visualization, and simulation.

  • Sparse Volume Textures and Volumetric Path Tracing are new features that enable users to create realistic volumetric effects such as smoke and fire using ray tracing. Sparse Volume Textures allow users to store and sample large volumes of data efficiently, while Volumetric Path Tracing simulates the interaction of light with the volume data.
  • Skeletal Editor is a new feature that allows users to do weight and skinning work for skeletal meshes in-engine. Users can edit the bone weights, vertex influences, and skinning methods using a visual interface.
  • Orthographic Rendering is a new feature that enables users to create parallel projection views of their scenes. This is particularly useful for architecture and manufacturing visualizations and stylistic games projects that require orthographic views.
  • Panel Cloth Editor and ML Cloth are new features that improve cloth tooling in Unreal Engine. Panel Cloth Editor allows users to create cloth simulations based on panels, which are flat pieces of cloth that can be stitched together. ML Cloth is a machine learning-based solver that can handle complex cloth behaviors such as stretching, bending, and tearing.

How to Download

Unreal Engine 5.3 Preview is available for download now from the official website. The software is free for personal use, education, and non-commercial projects. For commercial projects, users are required to pay a 5% royalty on gross revenue after the first $1 million per product per calendar quarter.

Users who want to try out the new features of Unreal Engine 5.3 Preview should be aware that the software is still in development and may contain bugs or issues. Users are encouraged to report any feedback or problems to the Unreal Engine forums or the Unreal Engine GitHub page.








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