Can anyone suggest what hardware specs I need for development (and obviously testing) of UE4 projects? And also what software do I need? What development tools? What about art creation, what 3D program do I need for that? Any other software I should have if I am going to do UE4 development?
Depends on the size of the project you are working on, here’s a non-exhaustive list:
- UE4.23: It’s better to try and stay on the latest stable version of the Engine and to update your project for any new stable release.
- C++: Visual Studio 2017 or 2019, no way around this one, you’ll absolutely want this.
- Mac or iOS development: XCode, no way around this one either if you want to develop for Apple platforms.
- 3D: Any 3D software should be fine. Blender, Maya, 3DMax, etc. Most popular 3D software are able to make Unreal-friendly formats.
- 2D: Photoshop, Gimp or any other good 2D program. Even 3D games uses a lot of 2D elements like UI, textures, etc. Unreal works with any usual image file. (png, jpg, etc.) For animated 2D images, it’s a little harder, but doable with a still image containing all frames of the animation.
- Music: If you plan on making your own music, any music making software should work. Again, “most” sound format should be fine.
- Testing: Tools for testing are included within the engine itself as a plugin, you’ll have to do some digging up for information on how to use it, but it’s there. External tools for testing don’t really exist or are too shady/complex to be worth the headache. The best way to test your game is the most obvious one: Play it. Also, using the logging system and debugging through Visual Studio helps.
- Lots of RAM. Unreal is very demanding on memory when compiling.
- GPU: Powerful enough to run the game you’re trying to make. The engine itself doesn’t ask more from the GPU than being able to show the Editor.
- CPU: By far the most important, get the best one you can afford. Nearly everything about the engine makes heavy usage of the CPU.
- Disk space: UE4 requires a lot of room, and I do mean A LOT. The engine itself is around 70 GBs when built, small projects can weight several GBs and don’t get me started on large projects or having multiple versions of the engine. An SSD with a lot of space is ideal, I easily managed to fill up my 1 TB drive with projects and different engine versions.
- Mac or iOS development: You’ll need a Mac, it’s impossible to compile/package a game without one.
- Android: An Android phone, duh.
Special note for Xbox One and PS4 development: You need Microsoft and Sony approval to develop for their platform, if you get approval, you’ll get access to special engine code to allow you to develop for the consoles as well as access to the console specific forums with information on how to develop for either. In the case you get approval, you’ll want an hardware dev kit for the console.
Use Houdini to generate procedural assets for UE4 with Quixel.