Archviz in game engine is not something really new. Unreal Engine was already introducing this option within the version 3. What make the solution really appealing for Architecture visualization today is the use of physically based shaders for this new rendering pipeline.
While a wide range of simulation scenario can also be handled by those game engine, our focus is on the realistic aspect of a static scene. Architecture photography is a world in its own, 3DCG already proved it can surpass it by bringing cinemascope metaphor on the top of the architecture itself, then real-time demo were left behind… until now.
Physically based shaders and acurate lightings are not based on usual 3DCG materials. Instead, a different set of parameters are defining more real life like sculptural aspect of the materials surrounding us. This bring us to the skill set needed for Archviz: a fine art base knowledge of light and scenery, somewhere between photography lighting in studio and a sculptor’s eye on material.
Here is what we think represent a state of the art archviz in game engine, at least at the time of our writing. Note that the use of physically based shaders in the Unity3D demo and CryEngine demo is yet to be confirmed. The version 5 of Unity3D has its own physically based shader demo but is focusing more on fantasy game level than fine art tuned Architecture.
© 2015 Dereau Benoit
© 2014 Ruggero Corridori
© 2014 Dusan Maljkovic