Epic’s stunning new Unreal demos show off high-end ray tracing and photorealism

At its annual GDC showcase for the widely used Unreal Engine, Epic Games revealed a pair of gorgeous demos featuring a haunting future and an eerie fantasy realm. For developers, the two shorts demonstrate various new possibilities for the engine, but they also stand alone as beautiful — albeit brief — pieces of work.

The first, called Rebirth (embedded above), was designed by studio Quixel as an example of photorealism. It depicts a harsh terrain at an indeterminate point in the future, with eye-catching landscapes full of jagged rocks and dusty fields. The clip slowly leads to a huge, angular structure jutting out of a hill with a flying car speeding toward it. At times, the incredibly detailed video could be mistaken for a live-action…

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