Fastest way to become a Ninja?

I’ve spent the last 2 days really getting stuck in with coding in UE4. So far i would say I have achieved barely anything.

A bit of background, I am a self taught OOP PHP programmer currently, but i have also built a couple of 2D games in C++ using SFML for visuals.

So my question to the community is; how do I become a Ninja UE4 Programmer?

Should I focus on book knowledge of C++, and study my C++ Primer 5th Edition like crazy?

Or should I just keep chipping away in the way that I am currently am?

Or can you suggest any other good methods for progression?

Are there any other good resources that offer UE4 programming info yet? I know its early in the life of UE4, but I feel I am struggling with context and methodologies. I can read API docs but it is the contextual application that is missing for me and its slowing me down loads. Its like i am fumbling in the dark.

Once I have reached Ninja Status, I will pay back to the community with Tutorial Vids, on all this stuff that is slowing me down at the moment. :smiley:


I would recommend downloading the shooter game project and adding something new to it. Add a new weapon, fx, some player control change. This will force you to learn some part of the api and debug some ok code.

I am with you on this. The Unreal layer on top of C++ can be dark at times. Even back with UDK/UE3, you just looked at examples, tested, and hoped the feedback was what you were looking for. I know a little later there was a book for Unreal Script, but there is just no such thing for UE4. I believe that’s because it is so much in flux. There were some major changes just between 4.5 and 4.6. I know Rama has a pretty kickass wiki up with lots of examples. I would check there.

The ShooterGame would be a good recommendation, but I don’t believe it’s up to date.

I would start with your actual project, instead of learning just to learn that’s asking for a headache. Start with a blueprints project, you can always add C++ to the project later. Start with putting afeature into the kit that interests you most, like the a sidescroller. There are tons of resources, you don’t need a book. Here is a tutorial I grabbed randomly for sidescroller, it looks well put together, I have not followed it, but give it or something like it a shot.

I wanna be a ninja too :smiley:

actually the shooter example and the tower defense example are great to start learning
and of course unreal wiki has lot to offer

That all depends how much pain and stress you can survive, or how loud you scream at monitor while coding.
Hard and loud, but fast way is to bruteforce all that unreal code, and just start doing from something very simple, like custom blueprint node that adds 2+2.
But i think more efficient at beginning is to make something work in blueprints then code it in C++. This way you know that it is possible and how its done. So one less layer of unknown to guess.

It’s hard to tell you exactly what to do since I don’t know your level of skill in programming.

Are you super familiar with the C++ syntax and programming? If not, your focus of effort should be on getting better at C++.

If you’re familiar with the C++ language, are you also familiar with commonly used data structures, such as arrays, linked lists, trees, graphs, etc? If not, studying those would make you a more versatile programmer.

If you know how to program, and how to write C++ code well, you’re ready to dive into UE4. The questions you’ll be asking are not “how do you write code?” but more like, “How does the code I write interact with the engine? What does the object inheritance structure look like? What are all of the API calls available to me? How does the UE4 reflection system work?”
In those cases, I highly recommend going through the step by step video tutorials they have posted. Try to follow along and have everything working exactly as they have it working in the videos. If you still have questions or confusion, those are areas you need to focus on clarifying for yourself. Once you’re able to understand the backend code, you’re ready to start diving in and working hard and long. To become this mythical ninja, you just need lots of time and practice with the tool. No ninjas are made overnight, they’re highly trained and well practiced.

Good luck!