Updating, hovering and other questions.

So I have had the unreal editor for a couple of weeks and it has thrown up a few questions that I don’t seem to find definite answers to.

  1. What is the deal with updating the engine? Can I/should I update projects? I updated the engine from 4.2 and 4.5 and my Xcode project failed to build after because of the wrong engine version. Am I pretty much locked into a version when I start a project?

  2. I was playing with a side scrolling spaceship game concept and on building was struggling to get any movement in the Z axis. It turned out I needed to be in “flight” mode to enable z-axis movement. That is all well and good but in flight mode my pawn ignored gravity. I ended up switching back to walking and used player thrust to overcome the issue but while thrusting gravity again was ignored so if moving horizontal right it was not falling at the same time. Would it be better to write my own grave simulation for this?

  3. Pawn class Vs Character class? What is the benefit of character class?

  4. I couldn’t seem to change the mesh in character class to be a static mesh, can you only use skeletal?

  5. Has anyone found any holistic zoomed out conceptual tutorials relating to the Unreal 4 Engine and the optimum workflows? I feel like my workflow is currently at odds with the engines rather than in harmony.


  1. You can definitly update your project, and you should. What I do for updating is starting up the old project with the new engine-version, let it update a copied project and when it is finished copying my project and fails to compile, go to my IDE, compile manually and fix any errors. As far as I know, you can also right click on your project.uproject -file and “switch version”.

  2. the first post gives a good explanation of the difference between Pawn and Character. I think most of the time you should derive from the character.

  3. The Mesh Component of the Character is a SkeletalMeshComponent. But you can always create your own component. If you really need a static mesh for your character it should be possible somehow.

Most of this seems to stem from trying to use a non-Character as a Character. As stated in the post linked by HammelGammel, Character a specialized version of Pawn meant for biped/humanoid characters. Hence the inclusion of a skeletal mesh by default, character movement states based on walking, jumping, swimming, etc.

Basically, using Character for a spaceship is going to cause you trouble by adding the wrong kind of functionality. You should be using a Pawn, add a StaticMeshComponent for your spaceship model, and create your own PawnMovementComponent which converts input into side scrolling X/Z movement. For that matter, I’m puzzled as to why you want gravity on your spaceship? Unless you’re going for a lunar lander kind of spaceship where you need to manually control thrust against gravity.


Thank you both so much, it’s great to be part of such an awesome helpful community.

The resource you offered HammelGammel really cleared up the roles of the different supplied classes.

and Camille, you got it in one, it is a lander style mini-game. I will code my own pawn with a static mesh as such.

Happy coding