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This is a really odd thing, but the game MediEvil for the PlayStation One has been recreated as a prototype demo in the Unreal Engine 4. It's more of a tech demonstration to advertise the Unreal Engine, but it definitely shows some potential promise for Sony to return to the franchise for the PS4.
The tech demo was put together by Guillermo Moreno Alfaro, a Spanish CG and 3D artist with previous credits to his name such as beta testing at Electronic Arts and working on Crysis 2 and Crysis 3 mods. You can check it out below.
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Alfaro has a website with plenty of other tech demonstrations, including a brief recreation of the Grim Fandago's office and Geralt of Rivia from CD Projekt Red's The Witcher.
As for the demo of MediEvil, it's quite small and only covers a small stairwell on a walkway leading up to a mausoleum. It shows the main character, Sir Daniel Fortesque, walking up toward the mausoleum and then flashes through the recreated scene with it ending on Fortesque sitting down while the camera scrolls up.
There are some interesting things on display that may not be readily noticeable. The nuances of technical mastery on display includes the physical based lighting, which you can see with the reflections of specific light bouncing against objects within the environment. Most notably is the way the orange light from the flames bend around the brick pillars. Speaking of the flames – the whole scene is highly accentuated with the direction fire effects cast from the flames where they appear to be blowing in the direction of the wind.
In addition to the fire effects reacting to environmental conditions, we see the small touches of the Unreal Engine 4's particle effects come into play. One of the really big things about the latest version of Epic's engine is that particles are no longer just there for muzzle fire, crashes and explosions. You can see that the embers burn off the torches and fly into the wind – these are the latest in Epic Games' particle filters in effect, where it actually looks like the fire is burning as opposed to it just being an alpha blended sprite animation wrapped around a triangular object to represent fire.
Circling back around to the lighting effects for a minute... one of the other things that really, really impressed me is near the end of the tech demo. As the camera pans up Fortesque we get to see the light being cast into the room through the glass panes. If you look closely you'll notice that the lights being cast in the room from the moonlight outside exhibit filtrated color refraction: the stained glass is being used as a filter to cast light into the room but it's doing so while physically illuminating the room with the different colors from the stained glass. How awesome is that?
This feature was also recently exhibited during a Geomerics demo, but that feature in the Unreal Engine 4 could open up the door for some really awesome lighting opportunities for creative or artistic games aiming to capture a certain look or feel.
Additionally, the light rays cast from the stained glass weren't the only rays present. If you noticed throughout the video there was the presence of god rays shining through the blades of grass, the trees and other environmental objects. This usually ties in nicely with Global Illumination, even though GI isn't possible on the PS4 and Xbox One with the Unreal Engine 4.
Nevertheless, the demo looked really good and Alfaro did a fantastic job recreating a small slice of visual excellence from the classic PlayStation franchise.