Reality 2.6 New Features

Reality 2.6 is another big release. This release is based on Unreal Engine 4.20, with beautiful Cinematic Depth of Field rendering. You can have look at this new feature from Unreal Engine documentation: https://docs.unrealengine.com/en-us/Engine/Rendering/PostProcessEffects/DepthOfField/CinematicDOFMethods

Looking from Reality Editor perspective, ZDProperty Components are deprecated, and you can now easily export your public variables and functions from your Unreal Blueprints.

This release also brings up a totally new Reality Control Application, which supersedes the legacy Reality Launcher, while the legacy launcher application is still coming with the installation package, it is deprecated as of this version. The new Control Application submit "Cooking" jobs to a Cook Server, which can be installed on a separate server, also a brand new service introduced with this release. The cooked files or source projects are cached to local file system of Engine Computer from R: drive, before running. So the next run will be launched from local drive, improving launching speed.

The new Reality Control application has another new feature: monitoring the Engine(s) Hardware and Operating System. The Engine Monitor module looks for temperature and CPU/GPU load levels, while also looking at drivers and firmware versions, monitored problematic values will be displayed in the GUI.

Compositing Pipeline Changes

Please do not forget to apply the following setting to make sure the compositing pipeline works smoothly:

Go to and visit and make sure that is Allow through tonemapper. This option might differ in Reality projects created with earlier versions:

and restart the Reality Editor as requested.

Please note that the projects created with Reality 2.5 will have this setting by default while for the projects obtained from marketplace, projects that are created under Unreal Engine or Reality`s earlier versions, this settings must be applied.

To be able to view Videomask, please follow the tutorial here.

New Features

CategoryDetails
Unreal Engine
  • 4.20.3 merged
  • Cinematic Depth of Field mode is supported in
Reality Editor
  • ZDProperty Components are deprecated when exporting a Blueprint Actor via ZDActor Component. Now ZDActor automatically exports any Instance Editable Blueprint Variable or Public Blueprint Function (including its parameters) to ZD Control API. This will accelerate the Blueprint exporting process a lot. Now, designers using Reality Editor don't need to add any ZD specific components to the Blueprints except ZDActor.
  • Exported functions can now have their function parameters. To use this, just create a function with input parameters and leave its access specifier in "Public" (which is default).

    Please note that, all exported variables or function parameters have to be ZD Compatible types, such as Boolean, Int, Float, String, Texture (RenderTarget2D). Some types like ZDTrack or Textures will be displayed in nodegraphs as pins only.

  • ZDActor exported Blueprints can now output Texture as pin in nodegraph.
  • Reality Editor loads/saves .uproject files can be opened with the Vanilla Unreal Editor 4.20, without requiring a "Convert in-place" action. This makes the round-trip workflows between Reality Editor, and Vanilla Unreal Editor easier.

    If you open a Reality Editor project in vanilla Unreal Editor 4.20 and then re-save an asset which has a ZD component (like ZDActor) on it, the ZD component will get lost, when the same asset is opened in Reality Editor.

  • EXPERIMENTAL: When ZDActor is added to any Actor and if that Actor is not a Blueprint actor, all of its properties are exported to ZD API.

    Please note that, this feature is Experimental at the moment and may expose too many parameters to the ZD API.

Reality Engine
  • UMG (Unreal Motion Graphics) is available as node. You can create your own assets based on ZDRealityWidget Class, to export and control 2D Unreal Motion Graphics.
  • Reality Engine Network Listener is optimized to handle messages much faster and using less memory under load.
  • Reality Engine can load the node-graph (.rgraph) files directly from a path (or parse an XML stream sent over the API), not via .NET Setup Application. While improving load/save speed, now control applications can sen a "Load" or "Save" command directly to a Reality Engine.

    This new nodegraph file format is named as ".rgraph" files, which describes only one nodegraph. The very same nodegraph file can be used on more than one engine (only if engines are completely running the identical setup) , without duplicating the .rgraph file.

  • node has a new property, which can disable the fog rendering in the Unreal Scene per node.
  • New and nodes are added under "UE Lights" category, for creating dynamic lights in runtime.
  • A new 3 way style node is introduced with this release.
  • A higher performance node is added for dealing with alpha channel of the image only.

    This node improves processing performance over the previouse node.

  • A new node is introduced for viewing the color channels of the images (R, G, B, A, Y, Cb, Cr).
  • Removed pin of node, since it is generated by the new Cinematic Depth of Field system.
  • Removed setting from node, since it is not applicable to Cinematic Depth of Field anymore.
  • is overridden to be 0.5 by default. Previously, it was disabled by default.
  • EXPERIMENTAL: Node Groups can be converted to dynamically loaded groups (a.k.a Gizmo)
Tracking Protocols
  • MoSys ViaDolly is supported using F4 protocol
Reality Control
  • Reality Control "Studio Configuration" can now tell which engine to load which ".rgraph" file. So it is not mandatory to open the "Setup" (nodegraph configuration app), just to load the node-graph file to the engine(s).
  • Reality Engine Service now caches the content to the local drive before launching. This improves launching speed, since the files can now be loaded from an SSD drive, instead of R: drive, which is shared using SMB protocol.
  • Reality Engine Service can now directly load the project without cooking. Remember, Unreal Engine works slower with uncooked content.

    You will need a local Reality Editor license for running uncooked content on your Engine Computer.

  • Engine Monitor can now monitor OS, Hardware and CPU/GPU load/temperatures from the Reality Control Application.

  • Reality Setup now supports custom templates. Users can now export selected nodes to an .rnode file under folder and the Setup application will automatically use .rnode files under this folder as templates.
    For more details check Adding Custom Template Tutorial.
Action System
  • Action Plugin architecture is now supporting many of the ZDProperty types.

    You can have a look to Appendix G - Developing Action Builder Plugins for developing your own plugins for ZD Action System.

  • Both Action Builder and Control interfaces will enumerate and place plugins under menu.

Enabled Plugins by External Developers

PluginDetails
Substance

Updated Allegorithmic Substance plugin to UE 4.20 compatible version

JSON Parser

Blueprint function library plugin for working with JSON data.

The plugin is developed by Nicolas Santamaria. Source Code: https://github.com/besanta/UEJSONParser

2.6.0 (Build#155) Bug Fixes and Improvements

Reported BugFix Details

draws its back faces in Video Mask buffer

FIXED
Reality Setup displays node properties slowly

Optimized message handling in Reality Setup to parse messages faster.

has a deprecated

Removed this property, since it was a deprecated method for supporting hybrid virtual sets.

button in Setup

The button is renamed to to be more accurate, in terms of functionality.

Reality Setup has an experimental "pin" tab.Removed experimental functionality.
Multi line string fields don't work in Action BuilderFIXED
JSON strings can not be saved with Action Control PlaylistsFIXED
Action Builder has ZDCode optionsRemoved legacy functionality, since the new Action Builder plugins supersede the experimental ZDCode functionality,

2.6.1 (Build#161) Fixed Bugs

Reported BugFix Details

ZDActors with predefined values in array type variables crash

FIXED

2.6.2 (Build#164) Fixed Bugs

Reported BugFix Details

Project Export Settings with array type assets (such as multiple Lens Data or UMG Widget exports) don't work after COOK

FIXED

2.6.3 (Build#174) Fixed Bugs

Reported BugFix Details

If a UE project source is missing, which is used by a Studio configuration, Reality Control Application crashes.

FIXED

2.6.4 (Build#175) Fixed Bugs

Reported BugFix Details

Reality Editor can not build Light mass.

FIXED

For your questions on this release, please e-mail to support@zerodensity.tv