Knowledge Base: How to work with cooked Content in Editor

This article explains the requirements and implications of working with cooked content in the editor.
This currently only applies to content for the windows platform.
Configuration required to allow the Editor to load …

I noticed this article has been edited recently and I may as well take the oppurtunity to add that some asset types can be “uncooked” (i.e. openable) if you duplicate them in-place, delete the cooked version, then rename the asset back to the original. This can be done with a simple editor asset utility script, such as I’ve done here: Cooked Asset -> Uncooked Asset Editor Script | Unreal engine Code Snippet

Asset types this works for:

  • All simple assets (data-only assets) e.g. struct, enum, string table, data table, data asset (if you have the right base C++ headers) etc.
  • Static mesh (if you are lucky)
  • Behaviour tree including graph data (sometimes crashes on opening)
  • Animation sequence (sequences that are additive or use the non-default ACL will crash on opening)

Some other asset types may work depending on engine version and such.

I’m honestly not sure about the animation sequences and materials being listed as “officially supported” as cooked content in the editor. Yes, they do work when referenced by another asset, but when you open an asset with that reference your editor screen space is filled by error messages that takes a lot of time to manually click through and remove, or by using an engine patch, which is quite annoying.

In Unreal Engine 5+, there is an engine macro called ALLOW_IOSTORE_IN_EDITOR that could allow IO Store cooked packages to get loaded into the editor and I think UEFN uses it but I can’t recall and can’t find my notes on it anymore.

There is a lot more to be said on this topic but generally the use cases are thin. If you’re a game developer, I’m not really sure why you’d be bothering with this, since releasing a pre-built editor shouldn’t use cooked assets, but rather a content pak (making your assets read-only). If you’re a modder, there are tools out there that can take cooked assets and convert them to uncooked assets mainly for versions UE4.24-UE4.27 and another set of tools for UE5+ (that aren’t nearly as mature yet). I won’t link them here unless requested but it’s not hard to google them :slight_smile: