An Unreal Engine 5 Spider-Man demo has popped up online, and it's an impressive showcase for the new engine.
As Eurogamer spotted, YouTube channel dwr uploaded an Unreal Engine 5 take on an old Unreal Engine 4 project first shared by Lewis Fiford in January 2020. The project itself focuses on Spider-Man's movement and animations, and with help from Unreal Engine 5's default assets, dwr was able to plug things in and put our hero through his paces in a full-fledged cityscape.
Tinkerers have certainly gotten some mileage out of the city in that Matrix Awakens UE5 demo, and this Spider-Man demo is a solid testament to the flexibility and forward compatibility of the engine. There's definitely some wonkiness, especially with the web-swinging and some impacts, but Spider-Man moves about as you'd expect. It's not going to dethrone Insomniac's Spider-Man anytime soon – as a fascinating follow-up comparison shows – but for a relatively quick mock-up, it's a pretty authentic Spidey sim.
It hasn't even been out for a month, but this isn't the first superhero simulator to come from Unreal Engine 5. Just days after its launch, someone prepared a rough Superman demo with flight and super strength – everything except Superman, really, but at least we got a vaguely I, Robot-y approximation of him.
Many major game developers are actively working in Unreal Engine 5, including PlayStation studio Firesprite with its mystery horror game, CD Projekt Red as it embarks on a new Witcher saga, and Crystal Dynamics, who's now working on the next Tomb Raider game.
As it happens, Crystal Dynamics was part of a newly announced $300 million sale from Square Enix, which saw the Tomb Raider and Deus Ex studios and IP, among many others, move to mega-publisher Embracer Group.