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Unreal Academy kinda blows

It’s the same 20 or so courses re-listed under 20 different categories. I just finished the Game Development section, lets see whats in the Game Designer section. Oh, it’s the same videos. What about Developer/Programmer? Oh, again, 5 out of 7 of the videos where in both of the previous sections. What about Industrial Design? Surely there will be something different about THAT section. Nope.

There use to be hundreds of easy to find videos organized under logical categories, what is this mess and where can I find the old videos?

edit: for Christ’s sake, there is an Animation section with several courses listed, none of which have anything to do with animation! I mean it’s not like you don’t have dozens of videos on animation blueprints, skeletal meshes, etc… I know you do because I’ve seen them!

Hey! thanks for taking the time to thoroughly check out the online learning! We appreciate that effort. We do realize that we are going to have to refine our tagging and categorization system as we continue to roll out new classes. Many courses do touch on multiple subjects which is why they appear in multiple different categories. We did this because not every person searches on the same term all the time. But your point is well made. If we find things that are mis-categorized we will change that. One thing that people can do to help in this regard is utilize the in-class feedback (yellow tag on the bottom of a course (after you start it)

This is phase 1 of our online learning product so we know we will be improving things.

If there are course’s you’d like to see that don’t currently exist elsewhere, let us know!

Thanks for your feedback and for trying it out!

Chris

PS it worth noting that many of these initial courses were designed with specific vertical industries in mind and are separate from any other Unreal Engine training already out there. We are putting an emphasis on quality instruction and industry expertise so we will only roll out new material for any given category once it meets our quality bar!

I understand that nowadays is a fancy thing to make all videos tutorials BUT seriously for any serious programmer reading a well written programming book is still the best way to quickly learn and understand. I mean… many videos to teach people about how things work just really well don’t work … too long and unfocused, too much talking and too quick at showing what to do and explain why. This happens to all tutorial videos not just yours, it is just that it seems nowadays there are a lot of people producing tutorial videos but out of many hours of footage only a few minutes are really useful and it is a pain to move back and forth between them to understand how to do things. What happened to hypermedia ? I mean… use shorter videos in written pages (PDF, HTML whatever) and sounds and pictures when needed to explain but use all media types to let the readers/viewers understand what is going on and the reasons why some things work that way. Also it would be absolutely helpful if all the APIs of UE4 were clearly documented for both C++ and BP programming and updated. Otherwise understanding how to do things becomes really difficult if not impossible. Look at Apple with their iOS, tvOS online documents… they have tons of complex APIs and they usually are pretty quick at updating everything to ease apps developers work.

im with you in this, couldn’t agree more.
for me the video format for tutorials is a huge waste of time. skipping the parts you already know about is as impractical as it can be.
then of course there’s the random talking, and the issue that most tutorials show you how to do one thing but not why or how you’d do similar related things, which end up with one guy learning to do one thing.
and then there’s the issue that sometimes mistakes are made and fixing them from the creator’s side is also as impractical as it can be.
honestly I never understood why the format of videos ever took off for tutorials :stuck_out_tongue:

at least sites like worldofleveldesign usually offer a written version aside the tutorial video

Im going to third this, the API documentation is suffering because of the focus on video tutorials. I really dislike watching someone wave around a mouse cursor for 10 mins before they even get into anything, I wont even get into the errors being taught by Epic which filter to other people doing youtube clips and marketplace content. Id just like the core documentation fixed first and foremost, theres already plenty of video tutorials.

:Tester

The interface of that part of the site seems too eye-candy centered for a learning resource, and for the time being, does not make much sense in terms of categories structure. But overall, no negative impression.
As far as contents go, in view of how good unreal engine is at being self-explanatory, entry-level content, seems a waste of efforts, but that is from POV of a person, more or less familiar with it.

From brief glance at what is available, Creating Plugins tutorial seems like a push in right direction in regards to choice of topics and presentation.

In my view, advanced rendering has lowest coverage vs high demand from all parts UE4 learning resources.

But as noted above, I would eagerly trade all the fancy video stuff for an extensive and more importantly, well-maintained API documentation.

@chrismmurray_EG
As the logo says, on-demand tutorials, and consequently, epic results, here is the topic, that I personally would find quite useful:

Using global shaders in plugins, including good example of using compute shader and doing a proper stall-less readback.

@chrismmurray_EG

Why not help distinguish Unreal-Academy from so many other quality tutorials out there by: 1. Always including small side-projects that you can dissect / deconstruct / take-apart. 2. Leveraging sites such as https://blueprintue.com or including BP as text so viewers can copy & paste immediately etc… 3. UE5 Editor / Tutorial wishlist feature: Add ‘hyperlinks’ that tutorial viewers can copy & paste directly into the Editor to jump to a particular section / window…

+1… Quick skip-to ‘Chapter Bookmarks or Links’ should be mandatory in all video-tutorials over about 5-10 mins imho…

YouTube lets you boost playback speed on every video. Whereas Vimeo doesn’t seem to allow that unless the content maker provides it…

That’s the greatest foe and competition right there, even though these are from Epic.
Personally, I think the ultimate solution lies here, but I realize not everyone will agree.

+1… Just to add, seems like Gerke Max Preussner left Epic since the Plugins tutorial was made… If so, he’ll be missed…

+1… It may not seem as ‘sexy’… But definitely, better core docs are vital / key…

The rendering video was simply outstanding… The pipeline, not so much. Not sure what was up with the editing… It was like the presenter repeated the same thing twice. The quick transition was jarring too. And, 5 minutes for a recap, necessary?

Consider coming up with a standard format for all instructors to follow… With my moaning aside, thanks for putting these videos on-line! The rendering and lighting by [FONT=“Brutal_Medium”]Sjoerd de Jong were amazing!

teak

Yes but I still have to skip through needlessly whereas with well-maintained API documentation I can get right to what I need, even if there is no index I can use the find function. Now Youtube I think does support skip points but no one uses them and the issue there is I have to be looking for whats already specifically defined. Im certainly not campaigning against people using video tutorials, just the fact that Epic seems to have forgotten about their text documentation (and how accuracy is important), while at the same time breaking the communities ability to input.

I made the comment the other day that there is not a single correct document on UE4 interfaces in regards to BP (correct C++ macro usage), that said I have seen a correct video but you wouldnt know the video is correct without following it through in its entirety where with the text you can quickly check by copy/pasting the provided examples. Its really not a resource you can quickly look at and get what you need, as a person experienced with UE4 I can safely skip past beginner level topics.

I have got a lot out of some of Epics video tutorials but they shouldnt be a replacement for solid documentation of their codebase!

@MonsOlympus

Since the topic is about Video Tuts, I was referring to the fact that they’re painful when you can’t skip ahead or speed them up. Which was my UX with Unreal Academy + Vimeo… But as far as API docs go, no argument here. For example, in response to:

I wrote:

BTW:
What’s always been missing from the API docs (BP/C++) are more and better examples.
That’s why I asked above about having more ‘companion projects’ to dissect / take-apart…
Historically, the docs have mostly been just Auto-Generated code-scraping, not real docs.
Epic acknowledged this and are working on documenting while coding. But that’s for UE5. :slight_smile:

Hmm, any source on this?

Exactly this ^.

@Skylonxe

Yes but as it was a PM, its better to keep it a PM. Check your msgs. :slight_smile:

Yeah I totally dont disagree here, I just dont need examples specific to a genre of game and its a shame more general topics get lumped in under a project such as https://docs.unrealengine.com/en-US/…BlueprintandC-

I dont want to derail the thread Im just sick of using trial and error to work out features which should have been well documented for years now. Autogenerated docs would be fine if the comments were actually relevant half the time, instead I have to work out from MS docs what LNK such and such might mean in regards to Epics API at any given time. Infact UnrealScript was better because it atleast gave you error messages with meaning.

Id be curious how professionals and enterprise developers feel about the text documentation, I wonder if they have internal documents for where Epics documentation is lacking. Since its been like this for UE4s entire life I dont expect better for UE5 (if there is such a thing).

I have to vote that the lack of “advanced” examples is lacking. The Paragon asset dump for example I was looking forward to auditing some game ready animation blueprints and was disappointed with the “just make it work” version. Have to give Epic credit though as to player model construction but a real world example of a working animation framework would have been useful.

From an “advanced” stand point being able to look at the secret sauce would be of more value than a written doc.

I watched through the basic tutorial series on blueprints. While it was nice to see that I had no ugly surprises or gaping holes in my knowledge, it also made me wonder who the tutorials were for?

Take as an example the way how object-oriented programming was explained in the tutorial; who are you “reminding” of the concept? The whole class-object-instance and parent-child paradigm is essential to understand to use the engine at any fair level of proficiency; if someone needs a reminder of those concepts, they need to be (figuratively) hit into the head with a sledgehammer until they understand the concept. You’d be surprised how easy it is to get stuff done in the engine without really having a good idea of what’s going on, and eventually hit a brickwall because of it.

For people who do already understand the concept that “blueprints use an object-oriented visual scripting language” is enough. For people who do not, they need to be, at the very minimum, directed towards material which would allow them to learn these concepts. The essential basic programming concepts for designers could be taught on a separate primer as well. But what it should not get into is “reminding people” of what object-oriented programming is. Either assume that people know of the concept and make them aware of the requirement beforehand, or teach it properly.

I would also advice against trying to emulate with what a lot of other online courses are doing; the follow-along tutorials. I don’t think they are generally well-thought of, at least from an educational perspective.

On paid online platforms, the course is the product. That is why the online courses come up with a rather lucrative project to start with, instead of what would make the most sense from an educational perspective. At least that is my experience with udemy, and the only reason why I can say that I’ve gotten good value there is because the courses were so cheap to begin with, thanks to the promotions or coupons that are always out there. I have not tried any of the subscription-based platforms.

The free online material varies in quality. The most helpful stuff I’ve found are the things that are very focused on showcasing some process. The longer tutorials I never really got along well with, usually because of the lack of direction. Another issue with doing various tutorials is that they tend to go into the stuff you could have learned elsewhere. This could also be an issue for the academy, if the courses are going to be completely isolated from each other.

Structure-wire, this is absolutely the best course I’ve ever done. Though it is old by now, the format was great: videos used to showcase things quickly, and directed exercises written on a PDF to follow along. There was a distinct lack of explaining good topography, but other sources explained enough about quads and edgeflow.

As educational material, exercises in general are superb. With exercises you can limit the amount of things that are being done on a single project to the minimum amount things needed to be done at once. They are also great because if you have already been learning on your own before, you can dive straight into the exercise and see if you can already do the things that are being taught.

But yeah, to chime in with the rest, documentation is always great.

Can we use this thread to report bugs/problems?

For example in Post Processing Essentials class the lesson 4 and 5 are inverted and also under Additional Info the link to the project file it’s wrong.
These kind of issues happens often in many many classes/courses.
https://academy.unrealengine.com/Cla…ing_Essentials

I can report other type of bug / problem. My progress in class is not being updated correctly. I cannot finish the class because even when I will watch the whole video from the very beginning it won’t be marked as watched. Never.

So if you’re going to be primarily doing video content, have you considered something like handmade’s annotations? You can see over here on the right of the player, timestamped events/topics which you click on to navigate them.

Hi all.

I’m not directly involved with either initiative, but I wanted to mention, and address any concern, that Unreal Academy and the videos are not replacements for our written documentation. In fact we have separate teams working on Unreal Academy and Documentation, although of course they both utilize the same subject matter experts.

Cheers