Best game template for GameDev club to create "gameplay"

EDIT: I wasn’t clear that I’m looking to** iterate on a **complete game template that is already working.

Hi there, for the last 6 months, a group of us started a GameDev club.

In Sept, we pair programmed on personal projects.
In October, we’d like to do another group project.

We’ve been learning Unreal programming together, and while a good ***-kicking can be fun every once in awhile, we’re not finishing “gameplay”. In October I want us to create sharable gameplay together.

Of the game templates available for Unreal (free or paid), what’s been your best experience making a game inside someone else’s Unreal template?

Thank you!

Game templates when you know what you do are useless or even waste your time. They are great to learn how to start.
But when you know what you do it is easier to just code your input blueprint yourself.
You should find gameplay (or even some game) that you want to create first, then code it from empty template or use one that is similar.

Personally i use templates only if i forget how to make some input or something i remember was in template. Then i create new project from that template and look there.

Even though I’m also risking being in the wrong conversation, I’ll say “The Blank Template” is the best. But people struggle with managing the default pawn behaviour there, so not too certain about that either. Strip everything you can; there, I said it.

What’s the point of using a third person template which is, admittedly, set up quite nicely if you’re making a space sim… :expressionless:

On the other hand, I can easily nominate the advanced vehicle template as the worst one, for sure. The defaults are plain atrocious.

Hi Everynone and Nawrot, thanks for reading and replying. **I’m leading a small amateur club of programmers and artists. ​

I’m looking to **iterate on a complete template that is already working.

We have invested 6 months in Unreal and have yet to produce a sharable play experience - let alone a good one.

We need a break from the learning cliff. There is a lot more “atrocious” in Unreal besides the advanced vehicle template - starting with the documentation. I’m wondering if Unreal is the best choice for the club.

“suck less” and “rebuild everything” are not actionable in my context. We need something to iterate on.

I appreciate your time reading this and answering my post. I could have been clearer about the challenges.

If you have, what’s your favorite complete template (free or paid), you have enjoyed iterating upon?


Well as luck would have it.

Our “for the love of the game” team decided to convert our game “Urban Terror” from id tech3 decided to move over to Unreal 4 when it became available and wanted to quick start the content team in making environments so we started with the “Shooter” example as a starting point. At first look Shooter looks like a template example but go a bit deeper it’s a fully functional shooter game that includes key online features as a fully functional game including bots.
Over time we replaced the art and code with our own stuff over time

@Frankiev I really like the flying car traffic on that level. That’s a really cool distraction effect in a shooter.

I wasn’t aware there are game templates on the learn tab. We will definitely check these out. Thank you!

^ This ^ is highly rated by C++ coders (check its current / getting updates;)). Its all C++ though iirc, and the thread says Blueprints, so that may be a deal breaker. Anyway, I recommend all the Blueprints templates by the creators here. You can find their creations by browsing through started posts in Community-Tools. But the first thing you should do is pick a genre and stick with it forever. As the skills needed to make a decent Shooter / RPG / RTS / 2d / Hybrid etc are all very different. Plus putting limits on projects can actually boost creativity… You’ll often find that the game morphs into something else over time anyway. So its not that crucial that the template is complete, its more important that its at least good enough to hook the entire team, so you go on to create something great.:cool:

Shooter is a combination of C++ and blueprints were in all cases the C++ version of the code base is used mostly for base classes but you can if you wish convert the C++ to BP a BP based class. This is due to the modular nature of Unreal 4 where Blueprints can be converted to C++ or from C++ to BP’s but does require an understanding of how all of the parts are put together. Since it is a complete game the requirement required is to learn how someone else goes about doing things and is why most would suggest that you start from scratch (aka buying a used car effect) so either way you go there is no free lunch as to the learning curve. :wink:

Honestly all templates kind of suck. They are great for learning as examples, but not so as foundation for real project.
I would say quality of template does not matter really. What matters is type of project that can teach your group most.

Because of that i would say 3rd person gameplay and template. And here are reasons for 3rd person (that other gametypes are worse in):

  • you have single rig for player character and humanoid character (no separate meshes and animations for first person)
  • you can do very advanced camera system and it will have use.
  • vector math for accurate aiming and synchronizing weapon aim animations to where it really aims
  • advanced animation blueprint for player character.
  • advanced sound system for player footsteps etc.
  • enemy AI in unreal is build for 1st person / 3rd person gameplay.
  • everything in unreal engine was made for first person shooter, so no fighting against engine base code.

Unreal Engine was built for 1st person gameplay shooters. Usually coding ANY gametype in unreal is nice and smooth, but then sometimes you get that tiny problem that you cannot fix because everything in unreal screams “1st person shooter”. So do not make other gametype projects you will fight unreal engine more than you want.
And 3rd person shooter is like 1st person but without separate rig for 1st person camera. Also you can always upgrade your project to 1st person by adding that rig and animations.

IMO. best template for your team is 3rd person.

Stuff you may look into (from marketplace that are quality modules):
Advanced locomotion system: Advanced Locomotion System V4 in Blueprints - UE Marketplace
Dungeon ARchitect: Dungeon Architect in Code Plugins - UE Marketplace
Models made by this guy: Content by Quang+Phan - UE Marketplace

**If “all UE templates suck”, that is a failure of the UE medium, not the individual UE template messages. **A design is not complete until it has been communicated and fulfilled it’s purpose.
I am an engineer, I have the power to create.

EntrpriseCustomr, I hate how right you probably are about this: “pick a genre and stick with it forever”.

Nawrot, “best template for your team is 3rd person.” I agree with this for a full-time week. It’s overwhelming for the 5-10 hrs/week people in the club. As a group of artists, we aren’t that excited to shoot other people, but we can make it work. That’s what zombies and robots are for I guess :slight_smile:

FrankieV, re: C++/BP. It took me awhile to see C++ as a tool for simulation/networking/complexity, and BP as a tool for creating entertainment value. An entertainer creates value for money.

We’ve got 9 templates we’ll evaluate this week, and I’ll post our notes back here. Thank you everybody!

Then don’t - make it a 3rd person planter game where you lob seeds that grow plants in patterns that recreate grotesque versions of classic paintings ¯_(ツ)_/¯. Set in all on an alien planet and fill it with with slapstick humour. You get to use the best template UE4 has to offer and your artists get to unleash their potential. *And *you send an eco message to boot.

Here’s the follow-up I promised. We looked at 9 templates, and my notes on them are below.

**If you’re looking for a “guaranteed success” template, I’d start with the “Match 3” for mobile or “Shooter Game” for desktop on the “Learn” tab. **

In no particular order:


Mp2dTopDownShoot - Premium

Top Down Shooter. Looks complete as a shooter. What’s the game?

SideScrollerStunts - Premium

Side scroller stunt racing game. Not my usual genre, but as a single player skill game it looks good.

UnrealMatch3 - UE Learning Content

See Learning Tab

Match 3. Seems quality and fun.


ActionRPG - UE Learning Content

First Person Barbarians. Works out of the box. Developed by Epic. Not fully featured, but the parts are in place. Many additional paid add-ons in the marketplace.

AdvancedTurn - Premium Template

XCom or Mutant Zero. I bought this template because I like the genre. It’s like a puzzle solving shooter.

Kart Racing

Mario Cart clone. I liked this template and was using parts of it for something else. It seemed “fun-ready”

TPSMultiplayerPack - Premium Template

Run and cover shooter. This wasn’t that great. The cover system looks like it requires alot of tweaking.

VehicleGame - UE Learning Content

See Learning Tab

Car racing. Looks great. No Menus.

Other Templates

First Person Story Adventure Template in Blueprints - UE Marketplace - 5 stars, 281 reviews
FPS Game Starter Kit in Blueprints - UE Marketplace - 5 stars, 178 reviews
Survival Game Kit V1 in Blueprints - UE Marketplace - 4.7 stars, 193 reviews
Complete RPG in Blueprints - UE Marketplace - 5 stars, 44 ratings
Complete Shooter - Bundle in Blueprints - UE Marketplace - 5 stars, 6 reviews

ArcadeSpace - Free Template

3rd person flight sim. Controls were awkward and I couldn’t get it to work. Nice low-poly assets. May be for a mobile game?

Get in touch with @CoquiGames using a DM on here or try the Gmail / Discord info at the end of MP page.
It might just be something simple Jorge can help with as he’s one of the highest rated MP creators on here.:wink: