Unreal Engine 4 coming this year

Unreal Engine 4 will be revealed later this year, Mark Rein has confirmed, with the Epic Games vice-president saying people will be "shocked" when they see what the company's next-gen tech has to offer.

Speaking at last week's DICE Summit in Las Vegas as reported by Loud-Mouthed Gamers, Rein said that UE4 was already up and running on "systems I can't talk about by name."

He later told G4TV: "People are going to be shocked later this year when they see Unreal Engine 4 and how much more profound an effect it will have."

All of which sounds very much like Epic's next-gen graphics engine will be revealed alongside a new console from either Microsoft or Sony. Sources have told us that Microsoft and Sony are both working in earnest on their next-generation offerings, with insiders recently telling MCV to expect new console announcements from both companies at E3 in June.

However, Kaz Hirai said last month that there would be no PS4 announcement at E3, and Microsoft France marketing director Cedrick Delmax insisted: "Xbox 360's cycle is not at all finished … E3 is still premature."

Rumours continue to build, however, especially regarding Microsoft's plans. Recent reports claim the next Xbox will be six times as powerful as its predecessor, use Blu-ray and contain "some kind of anti-used game mechanism"; a suggestion that was welcomed by a developer at Saints Row studio Volition despite the potential impact killing the pre-owned market could have on new game sales.