Universal Unreal Unlocker: This mod gives almost all UE4 games amazing photo mode
At this point, we pretty much expect photo modes in some types of games. If you’re playing an open world or a fancy action game with extremely detailed graphics, it’s surprising that the developers haven’t implemented a good way to capture the perfect freeze frame of a lush landscape, cool pose or facial expression.
And even when games have their own photo modes, these proprietary versions can have limitations. If you’re looking for a more versatile photo mode tool, you’ll be happy to know that screen capture enthusiasts have already invented it: the Universal Unreal Unlocker, or “UUU”.
The UUU mod lets you trigger a free camera mode in a long list of Unreal Engine 4 games (over 300, according to the UUU creator), disable HUDs, and recreate the game console. Plus, it adds an image jump function. The result is great freedom to capture exactly the right moment, even during cutscenes, which are generally prohibited.
It’s also a ticket to wander through game environments that are either underrated or completely missed, like the cyberpunk cityscapes from The Ascent or the iconic Imperial bases from Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.
I chatted with the UUU community on Discord to see their work and hear from a few members. TeoTave told me about the photo above, which he took in Jedi: Fallen Order. “I wanted to capture this inactive pose of Cal while making it look like he’s looking at the environment in the background, but I also wanted to add an ‘intruding element’ to the frame, like this spaceship in the upper left corner. “said TeoTave. .
“UUU was used here to remove some unwanted effects, for the free camera, to freeze the game at the right time (after counting the seconds for the idle animation to go off and the ship to appear in the frame … and countless tests) and for hot sampling. “
UUU was created by software developer and game modder Frans Bouma, aka Otis_Inf, who worked on camera mods for a while, but always wanted to do something more universal.
He and a friend started making camera unlocks for a few specific UE4 games and then worked to make the code more and more generalized so that it would work on multiple titles created with the engine. There you go, it worked, and Bouma was able to keep up with Unreal Engine updates that would otherwise complicate matters.
The UUU also uses something called “hotsampling” to help you take more detailed photos without melting your GPU.
“The idea is that you compose a screenshot to a size that you can see on your monitor in windowed mode. Say 1920×1080. Then use software to resize the window to 7680×4320 (8K or whatever you want), let the game resize, take a quick screenshot, then resize it again before your GPU explodes. The full window won’t fit on your screen, but most capture software will still grab the buffer. Full images. As long as you resize to a resolution of the same aspect ratio, the screenshot should be the same as you composed, just a much higher resolution, ”said Jim2point0, UUU community moderator .
Many screenshots submitted by the UUU community showed some level of hot sampling, as well as changes using ReShade.
Portraits of the most popular characters in PC games are made easier with the UUU tool. If a game supports arbitrary resolution, you can resize your shot and get a high-res image without having to awkwardly rotate your camera or crop a shot from a distance.
Bouma is not content to keep pace with the EU4. It also recently added a new lighting system which can add personalized lighting in real time. In this photo from Kena: Bridge of Spirits, he added two custom light sources that illuminate the heroine’s staff and face.
v4.1 BETA with the new custom lighting system (not 100% implemented but will be later this week) now available on my Patreon: https://t.co/aueLCSzEGa. Shot below with 2 custom lights. pic.twitter.com/x48qnO0qefSeptember 21, 2021
UU users also used the free camera feature to dig deeper into parts of the games that the developers probably never intended to see.
“There’s a moment on Ruiner in which the character rides on some sort of bike that’s supposed to go at the speed of light,” Discord user SammirLlm said. “The first time I was like ‘man this trail is really long’ but when I got to replay it and used UUU on this scene it turned out the bike wasn’t moving, this are the surroundings that move quickly and in a sort of loop so you have that feeling of movement. Honestly, that was pretty funny to see. “
Another recently added feature that screen captures have found useful is the camera path feature. This allows you to create a path for the camera to follow, much like a virtual camera cart like you would see in professionally edited movie trailers. Watch the video below for an example using The Ascent’s main downtown area.
And for modders who want to run games beyond their original settings, UUU re-enables the console control function of every UE4 game, sometimes allowing you to change graphics settings beyond what even the developers have. set for ultra mode.
For more examples of what you can do with Universal Unreal Unlocker, check out the Hall of Framed, where popular community posts are highlighted. You can also check out the full list of UUU supported games here.
Below is a gallery of additional screenshots from the UUU community submitted to PC Gamer.