Video Game Technology: Where Will ArchViz Go Next?

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Courtesy of Epic Games

Years ago, architects made the move from hand-drawn plans to CAD. The time they saved and efficiencies they gained transformed the industry. Today, you’ll be hard-pressed to find an architect that solely works using the traditional pen-and-paper methods. That digital shift has continued to develop.

The next phase of its evolution is a move towards greater interaction and immersion by exploring and reviewing designs using the same technology with which video games are built. 

The ability to take your CAD or BIM file, load it into a visualization tool, and then walk around the building in real time—like you would in a video game—makes it much easier for architects to assess the strengths and weaknesses of a design, as well as review proposals with stakeholders and clients.

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Courtesy of Epic Games

There are significant advantages of using tools like these for architects, as revealed in some telling statistics—one of the leading real-time visualization tools recently hit over one million downloads and research into the platform grew by 184% over the past two years.

Trading on the promise of ‘more designs in less time,’ Twinmotion is rapidly becoming the visualization tool of choice across the architecture industry. From sole practitioners working from a home office all the way to Zaha Hadid Architects and HOK, architects have recognized the advantages of the software, using it to transform BIM and CAD data into high-quality visualizations, including immersive, interactive experiences, in minutes.

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Courtesy of Computation and Design Group of Zaha Hadid Architects

Twinmotion Cloud: Seamless project sharing

With Twinmotion it is now possible to perform those design reviews with anyone, no matter where they are in the world, or what device they are using. 

Architects in London can seamlessly share designs for review with clients in Hong Kong, without having to send or download large files or worry about incompatible file formats or computer performance, thanks to Twinmotion Cloud. Simply click on a hyperlink, and then view and interact with presentations in a web browser from a workstation, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

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Courtesy of Epic Games

Presentations uploaded to Twinmotion Cloud are hosted on a cloud GPU instance, ensuring consistent visual fidelity and performance. As presentations are streamed live, your collaborators can enjoy an immersive experience and interact with scenes in the same manner in which you navigate scenes in Twinmotion.

Not only does this improve communication, but it also gives time back to the architect. To prepare for these meetings in the past, architects would need to render out images with post-production tweaks, produce walkthrough animations, take screenshots of the model, and more. With the latest updates to Twinmotion Cloud in Twinmotion 2022.1, any changes made to the model are instantly represented in the images and animations using quick and easy push-to-cloud functionality. 

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Courtesy of Epic Games

Like all the most powerful ideas, Twinmotion Cloud has huge ramifications for the architect’s day-to-day workflow—with all the time freed up from this faster, easier process, the architect can turn their attention to more satisfying creative tasks, like further developing and improving the design.

Path Tracer: Gorgeous final-pixel imagery 

Real-time rendering is fantastic for producing immersive and interactive experiences based on CAD and BIM designs. It also enables architects to quickly create high-quality stills and videos on the fly. 

But up until now, if an architect wanted to create the highest-quality architectural visualizations, they would be unlikely to pick a real-time tool as their renderer of choice. To achieve these levels of visual fidelity, you’d need to use a separate offline renderer. Representing a significant development for the industry, that has all changed with Twinmotion 2022.1.

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Courtesy of Epic Games

The new Path Tracer rendering mode in the latest Twinmotion release makes it possible to create stills, videos, and immersive experiences using real-time rendering, then flick a switch and deliver the higher-fidelity visuals associated with offline rendering. This progressive rendering option can be easily enabled in the viewport with a single button push, or used to output stunning still images and panoramas, right from Twinmotion, in minutes. 

When visual fidelity is a greater priority than speed and interactivity, simply flip from real-time rendering and achieve visuals that are far more precise. 

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Courtesy of Epic Games

Both the Path Tracer and Twinmotion Cloud are available to explore when you download Twinmotion 2022.1. If you’re interested in trying the software out, there is an unlimited-time free trial available, as well as a free version of the tool for education uses. And with an extensive library of free learning resources at your fingertips, you’ll get to grips with the tool in no time.

Cite: "Video Game Technology: Where Will ArchViz Go Next?" 09 May 2022. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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