Should I make the switch?

Hey All,

Well I am new to the Unreal scene, and thought I would reach out to you guys and see what your thought behind this is.

A little about my self, I am an indie dev that creates horror type games. Currently working on my 2nd / flag ship gamed called ‘Rides with Strangers’
I have another game out on Steam right now called ‘Welcome to the Game’. My company name is Reflect Studios and I really enjoy the creation and
process behind game development.

With that out of the way, I am seriously considering going to Unreal from Unity.

Now, Being on Unreal’s home turf, I know things might be one sided, but don’t get me wrong. I really love the workflow and mechanics behind
Unity game development. I have gotten really use to the component system, C# development language, and the basics of getting a product ready
for release.

BUT - on my current project I can never get it to work the way I want it to. Current issue is that the game will look great in Editor, but as soon as I do
a test build, things go down hill. Here is an example video of what I am talking about:

Now - The question I ask myself, is it something I myself am doing wrong? Or is something with Unity, that I have misconfigured? IS UE4 going to magically
fix my issues? Prob not, but maybe there is a more solid work flow behind it, to the point of what you see in editor is what you see in build?

Has anyone else here been in my shoes before? Why did you make the switch from Unity to UE4? Besides the obvious(its great looking)
Can any one point me in the right direction such as YouTube videos of the standard workflow behind UE4?

TLDR - Should I switch to Unreal from Unity?

Part of the question though is how much work you’ve done already in Unity and how much time do you want to spend learning a new engine

For that type of specific issue, I can tell you that Unreal isn’t a fix–as it is, performance will be different depending on if you play in editor to when you play a built game, but one of the biggest issues I think with Unreal is how spread out all of the graphical settings are. When you want to set up your graphics options you have to create the menu controls yourself, and things are in different places in the editor, some settings can only be changed in the config file as well.

But–then you have to look at what Unreal offers you, other things that are a huge pain in Unity just work in Unreal, like the lighting system. And the material editor in Unreal is just insanely useful, that feature right there is a major reason to want to use it.

Well the thing I like about Unreal 4 is it will always be Unreal 4 and continue to improve based on features developers needs as well as wants. As soon as the improvements comes on line they are added to the mix with out the traditional wait of Unreal 5, Unreal 6, Unreal 7 ect ect. :wink:

Developing games is hard engineering work, and when things go wrong, it’s sometimes a painful slog to debug and figure out how to make it right.
This doesn’t change on the Unreal side, so if “fixing whatever it is that’s wrong” is your only reason to switch, that’s not a good enough reason IMO.
However, Unreal comes with the C++ source code, so if you’re a C++ programmer, and there ends up being a bug in the engine, you can always fix it for your own game, which is a great option to have! If you’re a C++ programmer.

I switched to Unreal because Unity cars behaved weirdly upon collisions (trying to climb a building’s wall, flying off if collided with a streetlamp). Blueprints were an added bonus although I am currently deciding on what functions to move to c++.

Thank you all for the replies so far, as far as the C++ programming, I have no issue with. I have programed in c++ before, and using an IDE as great as Visual Studio it should be very comfortable.(When I was doing it previously it was in VIM on a Linux machine) .

I am glad to see some sort of activity on here, Unity threads of mine are ghost towns :frowning:

I have messed with Unreal a little bit, and things that really confuse me off the rip is that I see no ‘Camera’ element. Just a controller element, and it seems that the camera comes pre-loaded with several post effects such as, motion blur, bloom and etc. I like the approach of starting basic, then building up as you do in Unity. I am sure this is just something I can adjust, and have yet figured out yet.

It also seems that all lighting data is ‘baked’, so I am not sure how to approach dynamic lighting as you can in Unity. Lets say a classic flashlight and etc.
I am also big on performance monitoring, with Unity I can monitor the stats as far as the Tri count, vert count and draw calls live in Editor mode. When I try to turn on stats in Unreal I just get a framerate, is there a way to make it a little more detailed?

As stated, I am a complete novice when it comes to Unreal, so please excuse my questions if they seem ignorant. Hence why if you guys have any great links on UE fundamentals that would be great.

My current project I am in the environment design stage, so its not THAT much done(unity wise), The past year has been nothing but asset building. I am just more concerned on learning a whole new engine. I like that I don’t have to pay for it, Like I do with Unity($75/month) but if I remember correctly, they do take a royalty from sales? Correct?

As for camera, have a linky explaining this and manngs:

As for lighting, I know how to do dynamic lighting only but I don’t know how to mix static and dynamic. Tip: the light source needs to be set to movable to be dynamic.

As for performance monitoring, try pressing the tilde and typing stat unit or stat unit graph, this should be give you the info that nearly matches Unity’s. To get the tri count and draw calls, you need to type stat rhi.

Oh, and about the royalty, it doesn’t apply unless you earn more than $2500 IIRC. Or some other similarly big quota.

Since your game has not been built too much in Unity the switch shouldn’t be that difficult in terms of content loss. The levels (Unity scenes specifically), materials, and scripts would need to be remade but just about everything else should be easy to import as is. I switched from Unity to UE4 with a GDD done and a few prototype levels in Unity since I knew it wasn’t going to work right. Biggest issue I had was to wrap my head around the way UE4 does it as opposed to Unity followed by terminology (raycast vs raytrace kind of things). Once that was out of the way, it has been pretty easy to make the move minus the occasional C++ brain fart.

For my current project, the game mechanics were easy to implement but the art didn’t quite have the look the team and I were going for. I happen to be one of two programmers on the team (the second doubles as an animator and a level designer) so we don’t always have the time to play around with ideas the artists come up with mid-development. The blueprints allow for the artists to make their own behavior prototypes fairly quickly and show it off without needing a programmer to implement it. If it’s any bonus, WWise integration for Unity is so terrible that I almost never looked at it again for UE4; turns out it’s a ton easier to manage and exposes blueprints for the sound designer.

On to the project timeline side, I took a look at the kickstarter page and saw that you got funded about 10 months ago. I don’t know if you guys have changed the estimated release date from around June of 2017 to later but this is a tad close to be switching engines. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of things that are built into UE4 that aren’t in Unity (splines, character controllers, damage system, post processing effects, etc) that would speed up development but it takes time to run the game through testing and ESRB that I don’t think you have.

So from another Unity dev, if you can push the release date back by at least 6 months, make the switch.

Again, thank you all for the positive input and insight on all of this. I do appreciate it.

I have decided to give Unity one more shot, by completely rebuilding my one scene in a whole new project. If this does not work, then I am making the switch.
You are more then welcome to join me in my torture via twitch: Twitch

In your shoes…

First I’d look into this thread and chat with the dev, then I’d pause and do a reality check…

2c: Moving / migrating / porting projects can be a real mugs game when you’re a solo dev.
So I say finish the project as it stands or put it on hold but don’t waste your time porting.

Why? … Its like recreating the game twice with double the hassle but only half the reward.
Pick an engine if it offers the greatest strengths / least weaknesses / fewest unknowns etc.

(BTW: Unity’s Componentized C# / model is totally different from C++ in Unreal Engine…
Also UE4’s actor model feels very different from Unity’s, any useful overlap is minimal imo).

Salutations ReflectStudios,

I would say that switching to Unreal is not going to magically get rid of problems like this where the build needs special tweaks to look like what you had in the editor.
Just like in Unity you will need to debug and find out the proper way to do things.

That being said I think there are many benefits to Unreal that you may like and can only suggest trying out every aspects and make the decision that works for you.

Material editor and AI tools in particular might be something you are interested in coming from Unity.

Just spotted this, might be of interest too…

Thank you, and you are correct, was just kind of hoping for some magic witch craft to happen lol.

This is great. Thank you.

with regards to framework is it safe to say Unreal has the frameworks free where as Unity you have to pay?

When I start Unity its just blank but Unreal has an actual full project that legit looks like a real game. As if it would cost a ton of money in Unity Assets to get to this point on Unreal.

Update to this guys,

I started a whole new project with Unity, and rebuilt my scenes/levels from scratch. Everything was going smoothly until today, got the same exact issue as I did before:

Now - I made a thread on Unity Answers, and if I can’t figure it out on my own or at least get pointed in the right direction to correct it, I will be making the switch. I can’t afford to lose any more time dicking around with Unity if I keep getting the same results. I feel that I am doing nothing wrong, and am simply just importing and staging assets.

With that being said, I know it really has nothing todo with Unreal - but this does.
My current game Welcome to the Game has far surpassed the threshold of using Unreal for free, and I am predicting that Rides with Strangers will go beyond that as well. Is there any sort of monthly payment / single license I can purchase from Unreal? Because I am currently paying $75/Month for Unity Pro(dont even know why at this point) and was wondering if Unreal offered anything similar, or is it strictly the 5% commission?

You can negotiate a custom license,

thank you very much

Unity fanboys will try to crucify you for posting that video lol

Some kind of texture compression problem in the cook?

No matter the engine, it looks like an interesting game. I saw you didn’t reach the stretch goal, but I think it would be a great fit for VR. This kind of personal, low key horror is really enhanced by the presence and reaches a whole new level of scaryness.