Hello! Newbie here would appreciate some Work Flow Advice!

Hi Guys,

I just started using UE4 and love it! I was wondering, I just found out it’s best to use a 3d model software to import static meshes instead of building the maps with the UE4 tools. My question is what do you guys recommend for software, Maya or 3DS ?

Also, I wasn’t aware that I would have to get to know UE4 and 3DS . Are there any other helpful softwares out there that I should learn as well?

I’m new too coding as well, teaching myself C++.

Best Regards,


I’d recommend Maya LT since it’s actually affordable at $30/month. For modeling/texturing/animation is has almost all the tools from the full version. Just you can’t render and certain things are removed (like plugins).

You also need to know Photoshop to create textures. You can get a subscription for $10/month from Adobe.

Some books on C++ would be helpful. I’d recommend C++ Primer or C++ Primer Plus (no relation).

I would recommend blender -> free and in my opinion pretty easy to use :slight_smile: But it always depends on personal preferences

I’m using Scrivener, totally unrelated but I mention it because it’s where I keep all my notes about UE4, (and easy for me to just share a screen shot) including a few programs that may be of interest, I’m still gathering resources and info, so not an exhaustive list by any means, but a few useful ones.


I absolutely love Modo Indie, it is cheaper than Maya LT and it is so much more intuitive to use. As for texturing, I haven’t gone that far, but I intend to use substance.

Awesome! Thanks guys. I guess I’m gonna choose between Blender and Maya. I’m building a zombie defense game like Nazi Zombies for VR. If you know of any great Zombie Tutorials that would be awesome. Thanks!

This helped out a alot, thanks! Do you have any other diagrams like these :slight_smile: ?

I personally am team Maya for life because it’s a scaleable professional toolset. While Blender is great and will carry you well into your development, if you ever decide to take this to the next level or pursue a professional course or even work with a professional team, it is Maya that will be able to keep up with your needs. I always like to aim high and never let my tools hold me back.

PLUS Maya and Unreal share a lot of similar UI in the Viewports and basic mouse controls which is handy and allows ease of transition between the two. I know it’s money, but since Unreal is free now I figure it’s ok to splurge on shiny content creation right? :smiley:

I personally use Blender, but I’ve used 3DS in the past. But since it actually costs money and if I’m making game/models for free I can’t see justifying the purchase.

With Blender you have a bunch of free software like MakeHuman (makes humanoid characters, MH) and MakeWalk (MW) which is by the same people as MH. MakeWalk can import MoCap files to make animations extremely easy. Blender also have a fairly good built in skeleton creation for your own custom animations.

You should get Photoshop, whether it be by more shadey terms (I’m not suggesting it, it’s just good to try out the software before buying it can be advantageous) or paying the $10/month. Or you can use Gimp which is 100% free and can do most stuff Photoshop can.

ZBrush works well with MH/Blender for making custom characters as well. The workflow would be MakeHuman –> Blender –> ZBrush or MK –> MH if you don’t have anything you need to do in Blender.

So I’d say try the free software first THEN if you’re serious about making games, get 3DS/Maya since that is the Industries standard. Just my suggestions.

Photoshop CS2 which is a perfectly fine legacy version of the software was terminated by Adobe and released to the public for free. The serial numbers are here:

Windows Serial number: 1045-1412-5685-1654-6343-1431
Mac OS X Serial number: 1045-0410-5403-3188-5429-0639

Im not sure if you use a Mac or a PC but the downloads are very easy to find through Adobe. This is the PC link at the least. Having photoshop will allow you to make texture maps and displacement maps from UVs in Blender and Maya pretty seamlessly. You just need a GPU that can render it all out and a cpu that can handle all of these very heavy programs. If you aren’t running from an SSD already, you absolutely should be for these that will drastically change the game for you.

PC link: ://www.adobe/support/downloads/detail.jsp?ftpID=3466

I’m bound to using Maya (which works great IMO), though i’d love to eventually bridge to Modo. Modo seems to be paving the way in terms of features, and after seeing Tor Frick over at Polycount whacking out 1 hour environments, it looks like it’d speed up the workflow tenfold. but alas I can’t get over that learning curve…

Link: ?v=jyTY-zNYzho