Pipeline integrated - Unreal engine Crowd simulation plugin

Our team is working on a plugin that integrates our state-of-the-art crowd simulation engine into the Unreal Engine. This plugin is developed fully in Unreal Engine 5, and it adds a core functionality to the game engine: to create faster, more interactive, and reliable crowd simulations that handle larger crowds in bigger environments than the current functionality.

We think the current generation of pedestrian/crowd simulation software programs can dramatically benefit from the interactivity, real-time computation techniques and realistic graphics from the game technology field to achieve real-time, interactive simulations.

Traditional, commercial pedestrian simulation programs adhere to the following steps:

  1. Model the whole environment;

  2. Model the crowds, flow, start point, waiting points, etc.;

  3. Run the simulation and wait until the computation is complete;

  4. The result is a list of coordinates;

  5. Visualize coordinates in a 3d program.

This process requires a significant amount of time and expertise to handle such a complex program. However, with our Unreal Engine dynamic crowd simulation plugin, we are approaching this issue in an innovative gaming way, as game engines provide a way to achieve the same results faster, more efficiently, and more accessible. In this way, the border between simulation and the gaming industry is blended.

This is why the first of our core goals with this plugin is to achieve high performance while staying interactive and dynamic. Our cutting-edge crowd simulation engine has been integrated into Unreal Engine 5 and architected to produce fast and reliable results. We followed Epic Games’ philosophy to make the Blueprint System the first option to allow all Unreal Engine users access to our high-performance solution.

This accessibility enables developers to use our uCrowds’ engine in the Unreal environment without requiring a deep knowledge of how crowd simulation works. By using the Blueprint system, which is a visual scripting language relying on node-based connections within Unreal Editor, users are not required to have expertise in how crowd simulations work in a high-performance way.

Instead of the previously mentioned simulation software process, with our plugin, users can use our example blueprints to create a custom environment. This entails placing obstacles, walkable areas, and other elements. Once the environment is ready, users can use our example blueprints to simulate a crowd flow and connect the agent’s logic. However, as the plugin has access to our crowd simulation engine capabilities through commands, users can build their own blueprints or cooperate with programmers to build the blueprints for more complex systems.

We’re currently building integrations with the Mass AI system and other UE components. Stay tuned for our next post about realism and control.

#epicgames #epicmegagrants #unrealengine #UE5 #crowdsimulation (Picture: plugin + Amazon Web Services (AWS) SimSpace Weaver)

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