Unreal Engine 4.22 Preview 4 is available to download now

The preview of the 4.22 build of Unreal Engine features 115 fixes and is available now for testing and troubleshooting purposes.

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Game developers gather around! The preview of Unreal Engine 4's upcoming update, version 4.22, is now available via the Launcher and on GitHub. The early release is an attempt to have the community catch any lingering issues before the final release goes live.

There's a lot new in the 4.22 build of Unreal Engine 4 and the preview builds haven't been previously tested, so developers are warned not to convert projects for active development on preview builds. Below is merely a snapshot of what to expect and you can see the full breakdown of all 115 fixes in the official Unreal Engine forums:

Unreal Engine 4 version 4.22 preview build available now
  • Animation Updates:
    • Animation Budgeting System (Early Access)
    • Animation Sharing Plugin. Added a new plugin which implements an Animation Sharing system. The system is used for reducing the overall amount of animation work required for a crowd of actors.
    • Preview Scene Settings Improvements. Will allow the user to hide Environment Cubemap without disabling lighting
    • Per Platform Properties Improvements. Per Platform Properties have been extended to be allow for setting values based on Target Platform in addition to the Platform Groups.
  • Audio Updates:
    • New Unreal Audio Engine now on by Default for New Projects
    • TimeSynth. TimeSynth is a new audio clip based synth component focused on providing designers with sample-accurate start, stop, and concatenation sound playback.
    • Layered Sound Concurrency. The Sound Concurrency System now observes multiple settings/groups.\
    • Spectral Analyzer for Submixed Added to Real Time Analysis Tools. In addition to the Envelope Follower, designers can now analyze a Submix’s Spectral Energy during gameplay to drive Blueprint automation.
    • Improvements to Sound Asset Importing. We have improved sound asset importing, in addition to supporting multi-channel wav files, Unreal Engine now converts from a variety of sound file formats upon import including AIFF, FLAC, and OGG/Vorbis.
    • Improvements to MIDI Device Plugin. Improvements have been made to the MIDI Device Plugin allowing users to not only process MIDI Device Input, but also send MIDI Messages Out to Devices.
  • Automation Updates:
    • Gauntlet Improvements
      • Expanded documentation & samples
      • iOS Support
      • Device Service
      • Profile Guided Optimization
      • Report Creation
  • Dev Tools Updates:
    • Visual Studio 2019. Support for Visual Studio 2019 has been added. By default, UE4 will still use the Visual Studio 2017 compiler if you have it installed.
    • Build Time Improvements. We’ve made a large number of optimizations to UnrealBuildTool and UnrealHeaderTool to improve C++ iteration times.
    • Support for long filenames (Experimental). Historically, paths in windows have been limited to 260 characters, which can cause problems for projects with complex naming conventions and deep hierarchies of assets. The Windows 10 Anniversary Update adds support for much longer filenames, on the condition that the user and each application opt-in to it.
  • Editor Updates:
    • Subsystems. Subsystems are auto instanced classes with managed lifetimes. These classes provide easy to use extension points where the programmers can avoid the complexity of modifying or overriding engine classes while simultaneously getting Blueprint and Python exposure out of the box.
    • Editor Utility Widgets. Editor Utility Widgets are based on UMG, so you can modify the layout of the Editor user interface, and set up Blueprints for logic just as you can with a UMG widget.
    • Material Analyzer. The Material Analyzer can be found under Window > Developer Tools. If you open the Material Analyzer right when the Editor starts, it will wait for the Asset registry to finish loading.
  • Gameplay & Scripting Updates:
    • Blueprint Indexing Optimizations. Improved editor startup/load times by deferring Blueprint search data re-indexing work until a global Find-in-Blueprint tab is opened.
  • Mobile Updates:
    • Mobile Feature Level Preview Improvements
    • Scalability Platform Override for Mobile Play-in-Editor
    • Movable Spotlight support on Mobile
    • SaveGame System iCloud Support
    • Device Output Window Improvements
    • HTML5 Platform Improvements
    • Dithered LOD Transitions on Mobile
    • iOS Preferred Orientation
  • Networking Updates:
    • Improved Steamworks support. We’ve made several improvements to usability and quality of life for developers of multiplayer games on Steam.
      • Dedicated Servers on Steam can now receive custom names (up to 63 characters) with the new "-SteamServerName" launch argument.
      • Projects can now override the Steam network layer by deactivating the "bUseSteamNetworking" configuration value and setting their NetDriver configurations to the preferred underlying network layer.
      • We have greatly improved the usability of Steam NetDrivers with UE4 Beacons in addition to standard game networking.
      • You can now set certain required Steam values, such as dedicated server names, or the application ID, in your project's Target.cs file. Making changes to these values will no longer require recompiling the engine.
  • Niagara Updates:
    • Vector Field Data Interface. We reworked the Vector Field Data Interface completely, and now it works the same for both CPU and GPU particles. The Vector Field Data Interface only supports static vector fields.\
    • Curl Noise Data Interface. The Curl Noise Data Interface is completely reworked. Unreal Engine 4 now generates procedural curl noise based on an underlying simplex noise function. The results are identical for both CPU and GPU emitters.
    • Detailed Random Number Generation. This feature adds support for deterministic random number generation for both CPU and GPU Niagara emitters.
    • Additional Inputs for Math Operations.
    • Support for Deprecating Scripts. Scripts for modules, dynamic inputs, and functions can now be marked as deprecated in the script editor. Emitters and systems using deprecated scripts will now display errors in the UI, and deprecated scripts will not show up in the menus used to add them.
    • New Initialization Modules
    • Select by Simulation Target Node. A new node is available for use in script graphs for modules, dynamic inputs, and functions which can be used to execute different logic depending on whether an emitter is running in the CPU vector machine or in a GPU compute script.
    • New Collision System. Niagara collisions have been completely rewritten. The tool now supports ray-trace-based CPU collisions, CPU+GPU analytical plane

Unreal Engine is the creation platform behind experiences like Fortnite, Dragon Ball FighterZ, and many others. The platform is even being used in virtual reality to design BMWs. Stay tuned to Shacknews for gaming and tech updates.

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