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Unreal Engine 4.13 Released, Bringing VR Editor Improvements

Early last month Epic Games released a preview for the next version of its ever popular middleware software, Unreal Engine 4.13. Now the company has fully launched the update, bringing with it lots of new additions, including some virtual reality (VR) specific improvements.

Unreal Engine 4.13 features a massive amount of update information with all of the changlog listed on the Unreal Engine Blog. The main VR additions are: VR Mesh Painting, allowing users to paint on textures and mesh vertices; Foliage Painting, giving the option to paint various foliage types; Colour Picker, so users can change colour properties on lights and other actors as well as selecting colours for Vertex Painting and Texture Painting in VR.

There’s also Play from VR Editor, enabling developers to prototype projects; an improved VR Transform Gizmo; a VR Editor Flashlight and the ability to take screenshots directly in the editor.

Below is a further list of VR improvements in Unreal Engine 4.13, and for all the latest Unreal Engine news, keep reading VRFocus.

Unreal Engine Foliage Painting

VR:

New: Added a “Start in VR” project setting, which will force a project to try and start in VR mode, regardless of whether or not it has -vr specified on the commandline.

New: Added additional Motion Controller types, to allow for extension to devices that have more than just left and right trackers.

New: Added GoogleVR (Cardboard) support for iOS, updated SDK.

New: Added in “Get HMD Device Name” function to the HMD function library, which allows you to identify which plugin (e.g. Oculus Rift, SteamVR, PSVR) is currently active.

New: Added Oculus 1.6 runtime support.

New: Added fix for flickering shadows on translucent surfaces in VR.

New: Updated haptics system so that it can now take a buffer of values to playback asynchronously on devices.

New: Added PlayStation VR ‘2DVR’ reprojection mode.

2DVR is a way to display a static image on a quad temporarily while in VR output mode. Intended for loading screens, etc.

Exposed to blueprint through Morpheus Function Library.

New: Implemented HMD Setup dialogs for PlayStation VR at startup and if the HMD is disconnected at runtime.

New: Exposed PlayStation VR “Hmd Reprojection Set Output Min Color” function to blueprint.

Sets the minimum output color from reprojection processing. Can be used to mitigate certain vr artifacts (including dark smearing and rendered area edge visibility).

Note: Tone Mapping and Color Correction can achieve some of the same effects, but are cross-platform.

New: Added Steam VR Stereo Layer Support.

Bugfix: Fixed crash when running with an HMD with no microphone.

Bugfix: Fixed a crash with the Steam Controller plugin enabled where applying a dynamic force feedback to the controller could crash the editor.

Bugfix: Fixed crash when polling for position and orientation of an HMD from animation skel controls.

Bugfix: Fixed crash with Gear VR when transitioning levels with an active HUD.

Bugfix: Fixed bloom artifacts when changing screen percentage in VR.

Bugfix: Fixed module loading race condition in Steam VR plugin.

Bugfix: Fixed assert on Google Daydream soon after startup (likely related to heat-induced throttling).

Bugfix: Fixed Motion Controllers on remote clients using data from attached motion controllers. Can now replicate motion controllers across the network without having local devices interfere.

Bugfix: Fixed outstanding issues with OSVR rendering performance and stereo convergence in the headset.

Prevented the output log from being spammed for every single shader compile when instanced stereo is enabled for a shader platform that doesn’t support it.

Updated Steam VR detection code to now use a lighter weight function, which will not launch Steam VR unless it is chosen as the active platform

VR-EDITOR:

New: Updated foliage mode to now be fully integrated with VR Editor mode. You can paint down foliage while in VR!

New: Added World button to the Quick Select menu to allow access to the World Settings menu.

Bugfix: Fixed an issue where duplications could not be undone.

Bugfix: Updated laser double-click events to now be sent when the trigger is pressed rather than when it is released.

Bugfix: Fixed an issue where the Mesh Paint tool was not showing the Brush Preview.

Bugfix: Fixed an issue where Foliage tools were active even without the controller’s trigger being pressed.

Foliage reapply tool.

Foliage Lasso tool.

Bugfix: Fixed an issue where the laser’s hover point in the VR Editor actor wasn’t projected onto the corrected plan while rotating, translating, and scaling using gizmo.

This fix snaps the hover point to the nearest line or plane according to the transformation.

Bugfix: Fixed an issue where the brush preview was still present while using a Foliage brush and hovering on top of the UI.

Removed the “Simulate” button in the toolbar of the blueprint editor while in VR Editor mode because we currently cannot simulate in this mode.