Which modeling software should I use?

I’m getting more used to UE4 and i want to start making my own Meshes/Models… I know of 3dMax, Maya, Blender etc. but I’m not sure about which one i should use… What’s your opinion? Which one would work best(imports etc.) with UE4?? (I will have to learn how to use any of them anyway)


personally I use blender, its free and does what you need it to.

the best thing for you to do is download blender and the trial versions of and maya, try to make a simple model in each and then decide witch one you find easiest to use.

hope that helps:)

What is your budget?

I was in the same situation, in the end I chose Blender. As for imports all 3 will work, although and Maya would probably be less likely to run into issues because the fbx format is owned by Autodesk. But plenty of forum members have easily imported with blender. Some people were having some problems but some were also having trouble with . Also Blender is free, While and Maya are $3600. Even if budget isn’t an issue for you, I personally wouldn’t spend that much if I could do just about everything they do for free with Blender. If you are a student you can get and Maya free for 3 years. You can use the student versions to import into your UE 4 game to prototype and use, but you won’t be able to release the game with the models unless you buy or Maya. This thread is about the same thing but it has 3 pages of replies if you want to check it out.

Also, Since I believe everyone should know all their options, other modeling programs are Modo, Cinema 4d, Hexagon, and Carrara.

The import process shouldn’t worry you that much since it’s mainly FBX or TGA which is supported by most modern DCC packages. It is really only a matter of personal preferences or your budget. Blender is free, versatile and can easily compete with most 3D packages out there, but like any other 3D app it needs time to get used to it. I’m using Maya for round about 10 years now and it is the “love of my life” but it’s a love-hate relationship. Most of the time i can work with it extremely fast but every now and then it throws his stupid little quirks at me. I can’t say much about since i never used it again after the implementation of those pesky little floating widgets. All in all every 3D package has his own shine and whine features you are the one who has to decide which of them suits you the best.

In the same situation as I learn the engine and want to do more. Decided to go with Blender in the end. The cost is a major factor, but I’ve come to really like the Blender Foundation as a whole.

You also have Maya LT 2015 for “professional indie video game creators” for $50 a month or $400 a year or to buy at $795. This might also be essential for people who want to use the UE4 Animation and Rigging Toolkit for Maya

Check out Maya LT 2015 here

If you can’t afford that then Blender is an awesome free program.

I would also recommend you blender, because it is for free and you can do nearly everything with blender.

Next time please search for that topic before you ask the question, because it has been asked many times :wink:

It really depends on your budget, and what kind of a learning curve you’re willing to deal with. I’ve been using student versions of now since .06, but the full commercial license is just too expensive for a hobbyist, which is why i’ve started investigating Modo, as, out of all of the commercial packages, it’s the cheapest.

I too have tried Blender but…i just can’t get to grips with it personally.

Well as an opinion it’s not so much the application but what a application can do with the least amount of fussing around and hate to say it but and Maya are on the top of the list even if you have to buy into an application that has tools that you don’t really need.

After that if you want to do it on the cheap there is general always some form of work around,if you are the kind of person who does not frustrate easily, that would get the job done if time is not a factor as after all your only really buying time saving.

Take for example.



Inexpensive price and at times made available for free.
Intuitive tools and workflow similar to and Maya.


Windows only
Does not support smoothing groups as smoothing is accomplished through tessellation.
Does not have direct FBX support.

Although it lacks a few key features it is a good choice when compared to Blender that does require workarounds where the one needed for a true to spec FBX support is not available.

The key to it all though, in my opinion, is not what the tool does but what does it offer as a bridge between one application and another and 99% of the time the first thing I look for is up to date FBX support which is not “just” another file format ( a different story).

Now if you want to level up a bit here is another good choice.


An assumption on my part is since your paying a fair price it would only be fair that Carrara had an up to date FBX support and would be the one thing you would need to check out on your own. If it does and works with the brand spanking new UE4 engine then you golden.

Now working still in my world of opinion as in it’s just not about the tools. :wink:

In my experience most 3D artists will gravitate towards their own personal development pipeline as to fit things in as to a finished result so an interesting tool to add to the pipeline.


Not a toy or a modeling tool but a very good application for asset manipulation based on parametric values with the ability to manage and catalog all of your assets in a single place. If there was a bridge between DS and UE4 you would not even need a content browser built into UE.

All that just to say that my opinion is to say don’t be to quick to chose a tool because it’s cheap or free but rather question if the tool likes to play nice with all of the other tools in your tool box.

And as a last bullet point don’t even try to compare anything to Maya or as you will not find a 1-1 replacement at bargain prices and you can only compare between the two of them. Be better to compare with Blender as to usability.

Blender is wonderful. I would do most of your meshes in Blender 2.69 and If you have $349 buy 3-d Coat. You’ll save a ton of time on retopolgy. I think with the two you’ll get around some of the FBX import issues and be able to have really beautiful meshes that have all the trimmings and fixings right out of the box. Watch Master Xeon’s tutorial on how to concept a Robot in Blender. He talks for an hour about workflow as he models using sculpture mode and retopologizes the mesh.

Sculpting organics -
ZBrush (About $800 but regularly does free upgrades)
3D Coat (can get non-commercial version at Steam and upgrade to commercial when you’re ready)
Blender (pretty good)

Modeling stiff things-

  • You can still use Sculpting package like ZBrush but it’s not a ‘technical’ workflow like 3d studio , Maya, etc

In Regard to Carrara 8.5

Blender has worked out great for me but I did use Carrara last year when I started learning. It is easy to get used to. I will try the Carrara FBX import/Export tonight and report back to this thread whether it worked good with UE4. I thought I was the only person in the world that used Carrara and knew of it’s existence. LOL!!!

Maya feels very similar to UDK. I’d say maya however maya doesn’t have a nice way of doing lightmaps within the program. You will have to do them all by hand or use the built in utility in UDK which is OK.

The way you set up lightmaps or 2nd uv sets in Maya is much more simpler than in most other 3D applications. IMO Maya always was an underestimated 3D application that more less only was considered as a real choice when it comes to animation but srsly once you get over the initial learning i assure you will love Maya. In general from a professional standpoint i would never ever consider DAZ3D or Carrara as an alternative. In terms of free and strong applications, Blender is the way to go there is absolutely no doubt at all! Blender for general 3D stuff and Sculptris for organic modeling, get those two and you are set. And if you really need something that does characters for you choose MakeHuman it’s also free, straight forward and offers much more freedom than DAZ AND it is anatomical correct.

I tried the FBX export from Carrara. It was more trouble than it is worth. I had to go through Unwrap3D to get it to work and it only worked one out 10 times. Daz3D who owns Carrara has not updated the FBX Exporter so I can’t recommend carrara. Blender along with Unwrap3D has worked great for me. I like Unwrap 3D because it can import and export so many file formats.

Very good modelling software are Trimble SketchUp and “Moment of Inspiration” (MoI) ://moi3d/. Export models to Wavefront OBJ, import into Blender, export into FBX and import into Unreal Engine. For me MoI working very well and convenient, the working process is fast and I am able to get out anything I want. And by the way, MoI is cheaper than SketchUp and the support is awesome :slight_smile:

I use Softimage for modeling, ZBrush for detailing and Maya for Rigging and Animation

I’m nearly amazed no one mentioned Cinema4D . not that i use it .

I use Silo 2 for direct mesh making. It is not good for texturing or animating but for getting meshes out quick its an awesome tool. :slight_smile: