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Day 1 Keynote: Innovation is all in the game

Most people know Epic’s name because of games like Fortnite or the Unreal games engine that drives it and virtual production in blockbusters such as Dune, but its innovation and influence spans far and wide.  

“We’re more than just a games company,” declared BK Johannessen, business director for broadcast and live events, Epic Games. “Unreal Engine has broad adoption across industries from architecture to live events, training and simulation, manufacturing to advertising and beyond.”

Giving the ISE 2023 opening keynote, Johannessen explained how Unreal Engine was pushing the boundaries of content and experiences. More than half of new video games use Unreal Engine, and Fortnite alone supports 350 million players worldwide. Because of its success on the games side, Johannessen said Epic makes everything it builds available for free.

“Why do we do this? Because we’re makers, developers, engineers and artists just like you,” he said. “We believe people should have the freedom to create, play and learn in more connected and meaningful ways. That extends to enabling your success over monetisation.”

For instance, MetaHuman Creator can be used to build high-fidelity digital characters from scratch. Johannessen said: “You can populate a background scene with a big crowd of MetaHumans, or make a MetaHuman your centre-stage star.”

He also pointed to the free training on offer from Epic “as essential to your success” with Unreal Engine.

“I am really happy to be able to announce here today at ISE 2023 that Final Pixel, a long-term partner of Epic, will offer the first masterclass focused on virtual production for broadcast and live.”

He added: “We are excited to show our partners at the ISE show all the things Unreal can do. That’s why training is core for us.”