Over the next year gamers are likely to hear a lot about the graphical capabilities of Unreal Engine 4. As one of the premiere graphics engines for the current generation of platforms, UE4 has a lot of potential, but a lot mystery surrounding it as well. So far, all we have seen are tech demos and footage of Fortnite, Epic Games' upcoming survival title and one of the first games built using the latest iteration of Unreal.
However, as it turns out, there is actually a UE 4 game currently on the market - one developed by an Epic Games staffer - it's just not in the form you might expect. In fact, few could have predicted what this first playable UE 4 game would be, which makes it all the more odd. Epic Games has made a Flappy Bird clone using Unreal Engine 4.
Titled Tappy Chicken, Epic's Flappy Bird clone is available for free on both the iOS and Android marketplaces. Epic also hopes to have a browser-based version ready some time soon, but for now mobile is the only option for Tappy Chicken.
Make no mistake, though, Tappy Chicken is not a shameless bid by Epic to make a little money off the Flappy Bird craze, but rather it's a chance for them to highlight the versatility of Unreal Engine 4. While most will think of the engine as a graphical powerhouse for next-gen systems, Epic Games has built UE 4 to suit a variety of needs and platforms. And the fact that the game was made by a single Epic employee, one who reportedly has no programming skills, highlights that point.
"Tappy Chicken is the perfect showcase for the ease of use and flexibility of Unreal Engine 4. While it may not flex the full graphical muscle of the engine, it shows how almost anyone can make a fun and pretty game fit for mobile devices and web browsers."
From a fledgling developer's standpoint, UE 4 looks to offer an enticing package that includes an easy to understand toolset, an affordable price, and a flexibility that can apparently suit a lot of different needs. Tappy Chicken is a fun little gimmick, but Epic Games clearly has bigger aims here: they want to recruit a whole new generation of Unreal Engine adopters - even those who may end up making a useless mobile clone.
How do you feel about a triple-A developer like Epic Games getting into the Flappy Bird clone business? What has been your favorite FB clone so far?
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