Without a doubt, one of the biggest things in the gaming world is the desire from various companies to go and make video games with the “best graphics ever”. This goes double for the mini console war between Microsoft and Sony, who are frequently trying to best the other in terms of specs. The latest advancement in this war came not from them, but from Epic Games, who have unveiled their Unreal Engine 5, the latest in their ground-breaking video game engine line. The twist though is that it’s not just the Xbox Series X and the PS5 getting access to it. The Nintendo Switch will be getting it as well.
This may sound like a surprise to some, because the Nintendo Switch isn’t exactly the most powerful platform out there right now, and without a doubt can’t handle the full power of the Unreal Engine 5. But according to Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney in an interview with Eurogamer, they have a way around that:
“To maintain compatibility with the older generation platforms, we have this next generation content pipeline where you build your assets or import them at the highest level of quality, the film level of quality that you’ll run directly on next generation consoles. The engine provides and will provide more scalability points to down-resolution your content to run on everything, all the way down to iOS and Android devices from several years ago. So you build the content once and you can deploy it everywhere and you can build the same game for all these systems, but you just get a different level of graphical fidelity.”
One of the key reasons for this pipeline is apparently Fortnite. The game will be one of the first titles to use the Unreal Engine 5 and Epic wants to make sure they continue to support all versions of it, including the one on the Switch.
This of course would mean that various Nintendo teams can use the engine to make more incredible versions of their major titles. But which ones will use the engine is up in the air as the engine won’t become accessible to devs until 2021. You can see a demo for the engine below.