Matinee Improvements

Let me start off by saying, I am impressed already with UE4, and I’m really loving the new blueprints system. That being said, I am still hoping for more matinee improvements in the future. While many people are content with doing simple animating in matinee and putting the heavy lifting off into programs like 3DS Max or Motion Builder, I don’t want to. I rather have all my scenes working in real time, so I can make changes quickly and keep files organized using the content browser. Specifically, what I am looking for is…

  1. Audio scrubbing, or at the very least, audio that will play mid-way through. If I want to sync animations to audio such as dialog, I cannot scrub through and find where I need to make a change. Nor can I simply have one audio track, because for example, if I am animating two characters talking, having only one tracks (without being able to play mid-way through) means I have to play the entire track repeatedly, just to fix a half second timing at the end of the track. This can be quite frustrating and really slows down animating.

  2. Full screen cinematic track - to play full screen binked videos between small matinees. Let’s say for example, I want my character to go into a matinee for turning on a huge machine, then I want to play the cutscene I created of the machine working. Right now I need to add an event track in matinee, then play said cutscene in blueprint, then have it go back to matinee on completion. I know it isn’t a lot of work, but it’d be nice if it were simplified so I could lay cutscenes on the matinee timeline, and maybe I wouldn’t be able to see a preview of it in the editor, but being able to at least visually see “this is how long the cutscene is, and during this time it’ll be playing” would be nice.

  3. Lastly, controlling the start of playback. We can trim the end, but not the beginning. So if I realize “That matinee is too long, better shorten the beginning” I need to select every node, every track, and carefully move it up a few seconds. It’d be easier and quicker to have the red markers movable, so when blueprints tells it to play, it’ll play at starting point and end at ending point. This would also make matinees reusable without exporting them as FBX tracks every time.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, if anyone sees anything I mentioned that IS possible, let me know. I may have not found it yet and I wouldn’t want to be asking for things that already exist. Either way, I am still impressed with UE4 and excited for the the future!

Hi BallisticGE0RGE,

Matinee is one area of the engine that is functional but still very much unfinished and we have intentions of overhauling in the coming year.

Thanks for your feedback.

Oh that fills me up with happiness, like you wouldn’t believe! Awesome to hear and I cannot wait.