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Streamlined level editing workflow prototype

I’ve been working on a project called “Viewport And Level Editing Enhancements”
or VALEE. It is a user interaction experiment where I tried to optimize the level
design process, rethinking the decade old ways we do stuff.

Here is the introduction to the system:
http://www.zspline.net/blog/2014/04/02/getting-started-with-valee/

This is the browser demo where you can try the mechanics:
http://zspline.net/files/Valee/Webplayer.html

Visit the documentation for a more detailed description:
http://www.zspline.net/blog/valee/

Please tell me what you think: what you like and dislike, what would you
change and how. If the community considers it useful then I’ll look into
implementing it in UE4.

Hey ZoltanE,

That’s some interesting work! I think you may find that many of the optimizations you’re seeking in your project are already implemented in UE4, but we encourage the community to explore and experiment. If you’re able to come up with a workflow that works better for you, please feel free to share!

Ben Halliday

I actually really like UE4 controls. You can just alter your controls by holding down a modifier like ALT to get maya controls. But I really like the local grid you implemented there, that could could indeed be a good addition to the editor.

Ben Halliday: Yes, UnrealEd was a clear inspiration. :slight_smile: First I was to
replicate it 1:1 in Unity but then I realized that I’ve been using it for 15
years now so it might be time to look at things from a fresh perspective.
The familiarity often hides how sub-optimal a workflow becomes with age
due to the organic growth of features.

DennyR: I use Maya navigation mode when I’m modeling and it works
great for me there. However after using it 9 months in the Unity editor for
level editing I can say that it’s unfit for serious LD work: it’s slow and tedious
compared to the alternatives. A sculptor with their turntable works very
differently from an interior designer. I think UnrealEd’s camera navigation
(“Skate” in VALEE) is spot on for level editing but would be a pain for
modeling.

Well, at least that’s my take on it. If you guys feel strongly about Maya
controls then I could implement it in some form.

As for the workplane, credit goes to the good people developing Modo. :slight_smile:

That workplane grid thing is very interesting, I can see that being helpful and it would be a nice option in the editor! I’m not so sure about the perspective dependent controls. In my experience something like that tends to be more frustrating than helpful.

Bajee: What do you dislike about the adaptive transformations? In which
situation do they cause confusion?

My goal was to make your physical hand movements correspond to roughly the
same action on screen, no matter how the camera and the edited items are
related to the world coordinate system. In classic UnrealEd the ctrl drags moved
stuff on the world axes and before almost every maneuver a kind of a wiggle-wiggle
calibration was necessary (for me at least) to tell which mouse button will move
the object the way I want. That’s what I tried to fix here.