Talking with Joystiq, Epic Games head Mark Rein said that he expects the first game to use the impressive new engine will be available sometime in 2013, though he couldn't give specifics.
"For sure something next year, I just don't know exactly when," Rein said.
"Until we're really clear on when the game is going to be finished, when the partner wants to put in the sand and market it, we don't really have those kind of dates."
Rein went on to hint that a brand new franchise, or possibly multiple franchises, will be the flagship game for Unreal Engine 4 like Gears of War was for Unreal Engine 3.
"It's certainly important for us to have our flagship game. That's the game for which we develop the engine," Rein continued.
"Gears of War was the game for which Unreal Engine 3 was developed, and so shipping that has a huge significance for licensees and for us. I think, for Unreal Engine 4, there'll certainly be a couple of games."
Unreal Engine 4 has been in development since 2003, and will target next generation consoles.
Screenshot gallery - Unreal Engine 4 in action:
Copyright: Epic Games