Can unreal be used to make webcomics?

I’m looking for an easy to use program that I can make a webcomic with, and if popular, much more. (A game and movie comes to mind.) I have the basic models in Blender that I wish to use, rigged and ready to become the characters. The thing is Blender, although nice is awkward on the poses and material handling. I’m always having to append my scene to get rid of all the discarded things that still hang out in the memory. I used to use daz studio a long time ago but in my opinion it’s gotten too big for its britches and turned into a monster. Anyway, I see that unreal has an outstanding render engine and can make things look very real or very toony, which is what I have in mind. So, can I possibly take stills and turn them into a webcomic?

Thanks for reading and have a great day

Hello!

You absolutely can do it. If you wanted to get quite deep into it, you could probably also set it up to automatically do each frame on a shot-by-shot basis too, without having to do all the manual posing between shots (but this would require some effort on your part). There are a couple of decent sobel edge effects knocking about too, depending on what kind of style you need.

As an added bonus, royalties are not required on media like comics, so you can use the tools entirely for free.

Thank you, I would get deep into it for I would want to show the characters naturally moving through their world. Having the engine do the screenshot work would be ideal. I have ideas where I can dictate what they do and they will do it. The thing I hated about daz is the time it took to pose them and the lack of collision made holding things a right pain in the tailbone. There was also this bit where after a while it would slow down to a crawl and even corrupt the save files. I think using unreal would make the process fun and quick enough for regular updates. Furthermore, if I get bored I can just take control of the characters and wander about the level. I might also release mini levels to my readers just for fun or as Patreon rewards (giving royalties of course)

I’ve been poking about the wiki and I think I can move from Blender over to unreal without too much trouble. I would just need to figure out the actor skeleton with fingers and face rig, how to properly weight everything, the xyz of it and how to build animations. The levels will be pretty easy to make, just drag and drop, make sure things are right and go. Obviously, I would go for the 3rd person “game” angle and maybe make a runner as well for the readers to donate for and to just have fun with. I love runners and 3rd person

If you use the default Unreal skeleton, you’ll be able to make use of many of the existing animations.

You don’t want to look at collision really, you want to look at attachment.

Web comic is a good idea

Actually, I want to look at both, as I would probably animate it and take stills.

Does the unreal skeleton have fingers and face rigging or would that require shapekeys/morphs. My models already has shape keys in them for the expressions. Would I lose them or can I work them in?

Fingers, yes, facial morphs, no.

So, how would I get the face morphs in? Surely there’s a way to get them over, even if I have to export them one at a time.

Yeah! It would be nice to see one actually implemented. Very nice to see sstuff other than pure games made with Unreal.

While using the Unreal Engine would be the lowest barrier for entry, you may want to take a honest look at the capabilities and functions of a program like iClone by http://www.reallusion.com which is specifically made for character animations, posing, voice integration with model faces etc. Their product stack is mature and has several components (facial voice and other character and prop mechanics etc), so you wouldn’t have to recreate the wheel. I used to use it years ago and found it suitable to what I was working on then.

I was not crazy about the iClone price model but to each their own. UE4 excels in this department in my opinion for a great well rounded tool, especially since the Sequencer animation toolset has been introduced. I love it. Currently my pipeline consists of Maya / C4D / UE4 for my mad scientist development.

I think checking out other tools that do some character oriented “Film set” production will give you a better idea on how to finally settle on a tool for your needs. In many cases you may choose UE4 and iClone, as many of us use multiple tools Maya, 3DS Max, C4D, and Blender etc…

No matter how I look at it, this seems like the sort of thing that would be better done inside your primary 3D application rather than Unreal. Without any actual user interaction, it would lose all benefits and just slow you down. Assuming that you’re using still images, you wouldn’t even need animations. You could just pose the rig.

Thank for your input but i’ve tried things like iclone and daz 3d. Yes they are specialized but there is too much tweaking and too many add ons and plugins to buy and not enough actual stuff that I really need. Also it’s very time consuming to get the poses and characters just right, no collision to avoid poke through and just too much fiddling around to get things looking just right every time. In a game environment I can set up each character with all the poses as animations and chose which frame I want to use then extract it and edit it. There wouldn’t be an update to corrupt my saved files or a huge rendering time slowing my computer down to a crawl and best of all there wouldn’t be a high overhead cost. Maybe a shader, if that and that’s it. If I get bored I can take control and wander around my levels and just goof off.

If you look over at http://insanityofxade.com/index.php you can see my first attempt in Daz 3d I was lucky to churn out a comic a week due to very slow rendering times and just plain out right fiddling around to get things to look just right unless I just happened to have a compatible and adjustable pose in my library and that still sometimes only worked halfway decent.

I think that once I get things in UR4 and set up I can just set up click instances and go. It will be quick and efficient way to make comics. I might even be able to do many comics a week.

Here’s an example of my ideas. Take control of Sophie, click on the beaker, which has an animation command attached to it. Sophie picks up the beaker and holds it up in a natural way then I go through the output snapshots, which would include a few camera angles and decide which one that I want to use. Add the text, crop it if needed and move on. Running and walking sequences would work the same way and would look natural. If I had to switch to a new angle in mid stride it would look quite believable since it’s the same sequence in the same environment just a different angle.

Ah, I assumed you had an actual 3D application like Maya/Modo/Blender. That’s what I was referring to using.

yes, I do have Blender but fiddling around with a rig, freeform and all that jaz just doesn’t appeal to me. If all the characters use the same two (or more if there’s kinds of bdy types heavy, strong ect) characters with attachments and animations, along with alterations to make it that character it would be pretty quick. What I mean by that character is Sophie is very slender and curvy so she would have a little more sway to her walk than Jackie, who is a little more bustier yet slimmer hips than the title hero. Sophie is a narwith or a human/mermaid half breed, which gives her slimmer waist endomorph body type. While Jackie is mainly human but leans more towards the mesomorph spectrum of the body type. Body Type guide. I did a lot of research on various things so I have a depository of knowledge floating in my mind.

In poser there is a walk cycle maker and dials that you can spin to make the hips sway, the head nod, the arms move about, ect. Is there something like that in Unreal? Or do I have to do each walk style by hand, which wouldn’t bother me any. If they all use the same basic skeleton then it would be easy to make each character do what needs to be done.