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Epic Games: Next Unreal Engine in 2014

"Won't see the light of day until probably around 2014," says CEO Tim Sweeney

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has said he doesn't expect the next version of the popular Unreal Engine to launch until 2014.

"I spend about 60 percent of my time every day doing research work that's aimed at our next generation engine and the next generation of consoles," Sweeney told IGN.

"This is technology that won't see the light of day until probably around 2014, but focusing on that horizon enables me to do some really cool things that just aren't practical today, but soon will be."

He went on to argue that one of the biggest challenges for new technology will be dealing with multiple CPU cores.

"Once you have 20 cores, you can't easily say this one is going to be for animation and this one is going to be for details on the face of the character, because all these parameters change dynamically as different things come on screen and load as you shift from scene to scene," he explained.

"The big challenge will be redesigning our engine and our workload so that we scale more of these different computer tasks between CPU cores seamlessly in real-time and dynamically so that you're always getting the maximum computing power out with the engine, regardless of what sort of work you're doing."

Epic was founded by Sweeney and Mark Rein in 1991, and currently has around 120 employees, developing both the Unreal Engine, and games like the Gears Of War franchise. Gears Of War 3 was released last week, and was the seventh biggest 360 launch of all time.

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Rachel Weber

Senior Editor

Rachel Weber has been with GamesIndustry since 2011 and specialises in news-writing and investigative journalism. She has more than five years of consumer experience, having previously worked for Future Publishing in the UK.