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Animated meshes for quick level variation

Hi there.

I recently discovered a really fast way of adding some variation into your levels without too much hassle and felt like sharing it.

Here is the gist of it: You use really simple animation on a mesh, place that in the level then use the initial position slider (the start position of the animation) to add the acquired effect/variation to the object or scene.

All done by using one asset.
This is a relatively simple setup without too much hassle to rig and set up and ideally, gives you unlimited choices and variations when set dressing the scene. I discovered this workflow while updating myself on some animation exporting and setup.

You can see the breakdown in detail here with gifs and also read about some thoughts for pros and cons regarding this method.
http://tryggr.secondframestudios.com/2017/02/26/ue4-tip-animated-meshes-for-quick-level-variation/

That’s a lot of performance impact for a very small gain. For small variations like that, you’re better off using a blueprint with a random rotation in the construction script. Then the final result is still just a static mesh, as far as the renderer is concerned.

Agreed that its a bit of a drain (and not really the best way at all as I have broken down in the link to my blog) but the mesh in question is just linked, so it is not really a heavy skeleton mesh. Still, it does yields an interesting workflow with a lot of possibilities