Duplicated assets, asset names, and file names

Hi all,

I have a quick question (for once!) from our art team who are languishing under our current workflow which involves a lot of by-hand typing to create new art assets (and I know there’s a number of solutions, but would like to hear if there is a best practice known to you guys):

Right now we have hundreds of pieces of armor for our characters in game (we love having people grind for unique gear/loot) and currently to not have to do a bunch of blueprint setup every time, our Sr. Artist working on this takes, say, one helmet, duplicates it in the editor, renames it in the editor, and then changes the unique things for it (typically texture, maybe a different material instance, etc.) This is a lot of hand-typing of names that follow a strict naming convention, it generates redirectors all over the place, and any typo means runtime look-up of an item may fail (for example, if BP_Aztec_R_DD.uasset file-name and its asset name aren’t found as “BP_Aztec_R_DD.BP_Aztec_R_DD” we fall-back to a default item to avoid crashing).

Said artist tried copying files outside the editor, but then this has the problem of items in the same folder with different filenames sharing the same asset-name, and only one shows up (first one loaded) to even try to edit.

My recommendation is we just make an external tool that generates the name, copies an existing file, and then renames the asset-name inside the .uasset somehow. Trying this as an experiment just using Notepad made the file I modified no longer load in the Editor.

Is it viable to use an external tool to modify .uasset files like this? Are there other best ideas? Thanks!

Hi Matt,

Creating an external tool would be quite laborious. IMO it’s not worth it.
Probably an easier (but still laborious) approach would be to create an in-editor command for the task. See IAssetTools, it expose many useful functions.

Have you considered Data Table?
One can import and export data table to .csv format. Sometimes a single Data Table could replace a set of data-only blueprints (of the same class).


Yeah, we already use Data Tables in a number of places, I imagine we could do something similar here if we have time–the reason this came to our attention is that it is a poor use of a Sr. Artist’s time to simply duplicate (with a high potential for errors) these similar assets the way he is currently doing. :wink:

I’ll check back with the team and definitely check out IAssetTools as our one other alternative was (or rather, “is”) a plan to make a plugin for the Editor also. My main goal here was to see if there was an existing way people easily create huge numbers of similar assets and/or to rule out my idea of an external tool (simply opening files and doing string replace or whatever). It sounds like we probably should rule that out. Thanks for the reply!