Saving level as a new name breaks sequencer links

Hi,

I’m new to unreal, just building a cinematic to get started.

I don’t really understand how the saving works. Every time i save a level with a different name the scene seems to instantly change, and the Actors in the sequencer go red and lose their links. Am i doing something wqrong? What is the correct method to incrementally save your work?

Thanks

Anything in Level Sequenc3e is linked to the level. When you make a new level or change things you break that link.

To re-link them go to the wrench icon in Sequencer → Fix Actor References

Your other option is to right-click on each red track → Assign Actor → the actor in the list. If you select the actor in the viewport you can do the same but select repalce with current.

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Ah ok, thanks. So if you change the level name that’s effectively a new level? I see. Thanks for the wrench tip, i was looking for that from another tutorial but couldn’t find it

Hi…sorry still struggling with this! What’s the best way to work? Stay in the same level and duplicate the sequence, then rename it version 2?

In other words what’s the best way to make various changes and save them as separate scenes so that i can go back to an earlier version if the client prefers it?

if your changes have to do with animation then the best thing to do would be to stay in the same level and simply duplicate the sequence and bump its number. Think of it as a new take. That minimizes relinking and allows you to use any take that you did.

If you change the environment then that can get trickier. You can use sublevels to break environment areas/features and then enable disable. Likewise you can use landscape layers.

Thanks scott!

I’ve just finished my first official project in unreal. I must say I think the main problems i had with the project were all about sequence and level linking errors. Each time the animation that played in the sequencer was not replicated in the render export. I saved a huge amount of time rendering but annoying that so much time is wasted on fixing render exports that fail!

The most common error i would have was when i duplicated a sequence, the camera in the new sequence seemed to be corrupted in some way. Perhaps because the ‘camera cuts’ or some such history related to the camera does not seem to duplicate correctly, or is still linked to the old sequence? The camera’s Level name changes in an unpredictable way. This led to the sequencer rendering either the wrong camera or at times ignoring the animation on the metahuman (agreed this could be another issue). But this happened extremely often. You get the animation just right, hit export, and then 5GB of garbage comes out!

The workarounds I used were quite bizarre… before rendering i would rename the camera, delete the camera cuts then rebuild, or even create an entirely new camera and copy over the old keyframes to get it to work. I also converted the camera to ‘possessable’ which seemed to work. Haven’t a clue why though! I guess I don’t fully understand the correct workflow for making sequences entirely independent of levels, and also how gameplay relates to all this. For my needs whilst I don’t require gameplay features, I’d really like to understand exactly how they relate to sequences purely so i can troubleshoot these errors.

I found that ‘camera cuts’ seems to be more trouble than it’s worth. I very rarely used it for it’s intended purpose and it caused all sorts of problems with render fails.

Sorry for the long post!

Forgot to add I totally loved using unreal for the project, just will be be a whole lot better when i figure out where i went wrong!

Yes, sequencer definitely has some issues that can be very confusing, especially with cameras and linkage. I filed a number of both bugs and feature requests. Anyone else with issues should as well.
Things like Attach don’t even indicate they have broken links.

You shouldn’t have had to go through all your hoops to get it to work through.

Like you, I tend to find it easier most of the time to simply render as shots and edit multiple shots in a video editor rather than trying to ‘edit’ a sequence of shots.

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Yes it’s not that big of a deal to take the shots into premiere etc and cut there. Would be nice to have the option of not using camera cuts i guess, then you would cut out those potential errors…

They could simplify the process where you only have 1 camera in the level sequence.

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Nice helps a lot!
Thanks!

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Yeah it’s very confusing. In Maya/3ds max/Houdini/C4D if you need another scene you just hit ‘save as’ and incremental save and all the assets are copied while Scene 01 remains safe from any change made in Scene 02, you know the normal standard way of doing things (common sense) but in Unreal, somehow this doesn’t happen and it breaks the current very standard way of doing things, I really don’t understand the way of trying to reinvent the wheel while the wheel works just as it is (ala Blender). This is my logical understandable rant with working in Unreal.

Has someone figured out a way around these? what is the ‘right’ way of doing what I explained above? thanks

After using Unreal for a while I realize there are strengths and weaknesses with this structure. Essentially your ‘scene’ is your Level AND your sequence. So if you want to save as, make sure to keep the sequence and the level together (i usually keep them on the same folder) and see them as two parts of the same scene. Remember the level and the sequence are independent of each other… if you change the level those changes are not necessarily reflected in the sequences. If you save the level as something else the sequence will not automatically point to it. The good thing about this is you can make one sequence with lots of camera moves and then two versions of the level, and your sequence can be used on both…after a bit of ‘fix actor references’ if that makes sense! On another note these days I always avoid duplicating cameras and just create new ones. I’m not sure if that’s necessary but it works :slight_smile:

I’ve had this issue of the sequencer file getting confused and rendering the wrong thing, but I think it’s because I was doing things wrong. I know this was a couple of years back but it might help someone.

To create a new copy of the sequence do the following -

  1. In the sequencer window, click the spanner icon at the top and select ‘save as’ and choose a new name (DO NOT duplicate it and rename it, I think this confuses the engine, it probably gets the copy mixed up with the original which is why it will render the assets referenced to the older level if you saved it as a new version)

  2. In the project outliner on the right hand side, search for ‘sequence’ to select the NewLevelSequence asset. In the details panel for the ‘NewLevelSequence’, under general, change the level sequence asset to the new sequence. This will ensure the level uses the new sequence and not the old one.

  3. Save the project.

  4. When rendering, select the render task in the queue and check on the right hand side that the correct level and sequence are selected to be rendered.

This shouldn’t give you any issues.

If you do have a mixed up sequencer that seems to render the wrong thing try saving it as a new version first using ‘save as’ as mentioned above, if this still doesn’t work you can try right clicking on the asset in the sequencer and select ‘convert to spawnable’, this has worked for me in the past. If you need to change it back, you right click again and select ‘convert to possessable’. Just be aware that spawnable assets will only load when the sequencer is loaded. Basically spawnable means that they are loaded by the sequencer and possessable means they are loaded by the level.

If all assets were set to spawnable then you could probably use ‘save as’ without having to reassign everything in the sequencer, as they now belong to the sequencer and not the level. I’ve not tried this myself but in theory it should work. Though if the sequencer got corrupted you might lose everything that was spawned by it in the level! Be sure to keep backups!

Another issue that newcomers have is that the camera cuts track doesn’t have the correct camera on it. So the render will come out wrong. On the camera cuts track, click the + symbol and select ‘new binding’ and select the camera, then move it into position on the timeline.

Hope this helps someone, as I could have really done with this info myself but just couldn’t find it anywhere! As I slowly learned my way around and found all the options, I eventually figured it out.

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Thank you SO MUCH for this. I was kinda losing my mind after I duplicated a sequence (incredibly normal part of my previous workflow). And then got to work doing the next sequence, and then went back and saw that all the duplicates had exactly the same changes.
Looking forward to trying this method.

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With the unreal 5 v5.3, after clicking the Fix actor reference, all linked automatically.
Many Thanks !
ps.:
the “fix actor reference” is hidden in the wrench icon but into the Advance.