New Release: Stylized Demo

We’re excited to announce that starting today all Unreal Engine 4 subscribers can download free from the Marketplace the new Stylized demo content. Created by Epic senior environment artist Kendall Tucker, this Stylized demo showcases a colorful hand-painted, illustrated environment reminiscent of classic cartoons.

“When I first started on this project, I did some research,” explains Tucker. “I was instantly attracted to the hand painted backgrounds of cartoons such as Yogi the Bear, The Flintstones, Wile E. Coyote and The Road Runner, and Ren & Stimpy.”

Tucker began to notice that certain key patterns emerged that defined the hand-drawn style, including the rough individual brush strokes of the grass, the simple faded silhouettes of the background, and the squiggly lines drawn over the foliage. All of these elements, he explains, contributed to the overall softness, warmth, and feelings of happiness these works invoked.

In the Stylized demo, nearly every surface has been created to bring that same classic hand-illustrated look to life. The grass, stone, leaves, and stippled tree trunks all use a mask texture that resembles brush strokes on canvas, while the unlit cloud meshes are actually “lit” with a Material Parameter Collection that uses multiple vectors for the fake lighting direction.

“The thing that really pulls this style all together is the Post Process Blendable materials, “says Tucker. “To put it in a simplified way; the inked-style outline drawn over some objects is created by sampling the scene depth multiple times and slightly offsetting each one in different directions. You then compare the offset scene depth to the original depth, and you get the "outlines.”

A second post process effect with a blendable material draws last, adding a rough paper texture over the entire scene. The edges of the screen are masked out to make it look as though the scene has been painted on actual paper. The end result is a lot of fun.

We’d love to hear what you think so please be sure to let us know below!

UPDATE: This sample project and many others now exist in the “Learn” tab.

I had no ideea that such cartoon-like enviroments could be created with UE4.

Really nice, and totally unexpected!

Absolutely awesome environment, I was wondering if Tucker could shed some light on how long it took him to put together the environment? :slight_smile:

Looks very nice. Will be interesting to inspect the details that went into it.

Also, for those who didn’t read it already, here is the documentation on Post Processing, with some other cool examples:

Thanks everyone.

I can’t really give a hard number on hours it took to complete, as I would bounce back and forth onto this and also implement ideas I or others had along the way. But, yes, it did take a considerable amount of time to complete mainly because I had never attempted anything like this style before. On the other hand, now that the look and techniques are nailed down, it would much easier and faster to create different environments based on this style.

Does anyone know why mine says subscribe to download even though my current subscription is active? is it because i am on the 4.1.1 preview update?

Nice work! I was hoping you would release this but I didn’t hear anything about being able to download this until today.

  1. Close the Launcher.
  2. Remove the -applabel=Production-Preview from the end of your Target.
  3. Restart the Launcher and you will no longer see the Stylized subscribe message. It will now show a Stylized 4.1.1 download button.

Are you guys psychic or something? This is exactly the kind of thing I want for my game. Down to the setting and everything.

No idea? Can’t imagine why. UE4 seemed suitable for all sorts of crazy things from the outset to me. That’s why I chose it.

Well done… I was really surprised by how different this was. So beautiful, and I loved the pencil drawing look and feel at the start.

The only thing is I wish I could walk around in some of it. Don’t imagine there’s any way to do so that I’ve overlooked, is there?

Just open the level blueprint and cut the cord from event begin play to set cinematic mode. then you will be able to move around in spectator mode.

That works. Thanks! :slight_smile:

After doing this I can guess why the option to do this wasn’t built in: a fair bit of scenery is “incomplete” and the chosen camera angles are used to hide this. Still, I think if you just add a few fences and force the player to ground level, it shouldn’t be a problem.


well done … nice post

Can you please explain how you got the “Cartoon Border” around the viewport ? I looked at the blueprints, HUD settings, etc. but couldn’t find it anywhere ??. Thanks.

Check M_PostProcess_Base and M_PostProcess_Paper under Environment/Materials. They are applied as Blendables to the PostProcess volumes.

Ahhhhh!!!, great thanks !

Been trying to pick this scene apart and learn about it, but i cant for the life of me figure out how they did the rocky path. I cant select the actors that seem to make up the path, and i have tried seeing if its related to the material, but with no luck. Any hints or help as to how they did it would be great. thanks.

The rock path is using Landscape Splines. It is a bit buried, but to edit it, select Landscape mode, click the Manage button, then click on the button under the Landscape Editor dropdown, then select the Edit Splines Tool. Now you can select and modify the splines.