Unreal taking a long time to open a project

Hi, I’m working on a project which takes a long time to open the first time I start my computer. Subsequent starts take very little time. But if I restart the computer then again it takes a lot of time. It gets stuck in 43%, 50% and 93% and 95% (spends most of the time at 95%). What is going wrong and can you please help me fix it? It takes almost 20 minutes to open. Thank you in advance.

When you’re opening your project, is the first map loaded a big map with a lot of stuff in (props, fx, light, actors)? If yes, that’s probably why it takes this long.
To change that, go into Edit → Project Setting → Map & Modes. Under Default Maps, you have two options:

  • The Editor Startup Map is the map that will be open when you’re opening your project. The bigger the map, the longer it is to open your project!
  • The Game Default Map is the map inside of which your game should start (as your Title Menu map, for example).

Just change your Editor Startup Map to a lighter map. You can create a new map with nothing in it and put it as your Editor Startup Map for a quicker engine opening :).


Hi, thanks for answering. The map is big. But when I open it a second time it loads very fast. And I have to work in the same level anyway so changing the start up level wouldn’t help, as I have to open it after starting editor anyway and that would take a lot of time.

Hi Shi_Charana!
I perfectly understand. However, there is no real way to make it faster than it is. The map has to load, so if it takes 10 minutes on your PC, it is because it requires 10 minutes.
What you can do is separate your level in sublevels and hide those you don’t need to see while working. Opening the level will then be faster since the engine won’t have to load everything, just the visible sublevels.
You can also try to optimize your level, whether by reducing the polycount, optimizing the visual effects, cleaning up your blueprints, etc…

I hope these guidelines would help :).

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Hi. It takes more than 20 minutes to load, but not every time I open the level. That’s why I’m confused. If i close the unreal editor and open it again, - without restarting the computer–then it takes only 5-10 seconds. Do you know why that is?

Your computer keeps some information in memory, so when you open it again without restarting, some things are already computed, already “built”. I don’t really have a good way to explain it, sorry. But it is normal that the only long loading is the first one, as it has to open everything, compile everything, etc…

I guess that’s true. But the same project with same level as default level opens up very quickly in my friends computer (a minute or two) even when opening for the first time after starting the computer and subsequent opening takes no less time.
Edit: We are working on the same project using perforce source control.

Hello, and sorry for the late reply!
The subsequent opening will always, always take less time, and that’s normal. Once the level is opened, some data are kept in memory, permitting faster opening later on.
As I said, different computer means different speeds. If you want your level to open as quickly as on your friend’s, then get the same computer as him x).
If 20 minutes is the time it takes to fully load your level on your computer, it is what it is.
Again, divide your level in sublevel and, hide those you don’t need while working. This way, opening your level will be quicker as your computer won’t have to load everything at launch. You don’t need to see your art assets in the engine while working on character controls ;). And if you sublevels are in “Always loaded”, you will see everything in-game when you’ll press play.
Really, a good workflow is the only thing that will make your loadings faster.

Alright! Thanks! I’ll try hiding the sub-levels.

In my case, it helped a lot, thanks for sharing the tip,