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Blender to Unreal Tools, Part 1 - February 6 - Live from HQ

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    Just a few observations and suggestions - this is so cool!

    Depending on how integrated this is to blender? If you make this addon so it will build the FBX information; and then the export process would be the same from that point on... as a consequence the FBX2UE4 pipeline could then work for any tool - that is you could use the exactly same pipeline in all other tools that can build FBX and somehow run Python!
    Say - you could, in theory, do this in/from Makehuman and Houdini.. as-is, with only a few modifications!? (Makehuman already links directly to blender, but it would be neat if you can do this directly from any tool... using Python of by the FBX format... for now Blender could however serve as a "transition tool" you import from any of the other tools, and transfer it to UE4, you would probably use a specific script/addon for each tool that.

    For the design part. You need to move the export option away from the preferences and to it's own tool-tab - this demo session clearly demonstrates that you need that?

    Also you should be able to have different preset-set transfer options. Perhaps it could be done in a clever way... say when you change an animation and the shape keys... then the corresponding UE4 options gets set and done automatically!

    For the transfer it looks like you can transfer one mesh "object" only? Would be possible to for us to have more collections and then export one or more.. say you want a character, props and cloth in separate collections...

    Metadata, Versions and source control... messing with Blender/UE4 quickly leads to problems - you got the FBX reference but where is the original blender files etc. Would it be possible to add meta-data to the UE4 assets, or to the blender files - or perhaps even better would it be possible to save/store the blender files etc. as part of the UE4 project, and to link it all source control.

    This leads to something missing in Blender: a better way to organize your assets. I suggest that there could be a (Blender) project structure that "match" what we have in UE4. Say, you could build a collection set that match 1:1 the folders you have in UE4.. in that way there would be a better correspondence between assets in different tools - that is: we don't have to remember that! Say when you import the asset to Blender you can keep track of the source in a Blender2UE4 project file. (For starter you can store the sources in the UE4 project folders... )

    Blender Question - I had to learn that the shape keys are broken by some modifiers (it is not obvious what happens and there are no warnings, they simply don't get imported?), will the tool somehow be able to get past that, could it simply give warnings or perhaps simply "bypass" modifiers that wont work for UE4.

    (Edit: I know this is not part of this FBX pipeline, but it would be very cool I I could make huge tiled height-maps in Blender, and then export them in the UE4 format. Probably not a huge task to do this - only I don't know that much Python yet. )
    Last edited by AssetDK; 02-07-2020, 06:11 AM.


      Awesome!!!!! The missing link to the future. I love it when development is moving in the right direction. Thank you Epic for beeing a part of democratising creative software.


        Originally posted by Jim Kroovy View Post
        I guess the future of Mr Mannequins Tools will be rigging and templates then i'm looking forward to seeing how Unreal Engine officially handles Blender armatures and animations!

        Edit: We really need more stable ways of getting sockets, morph targets and materials in and out of the engine with Blender as well... just saying
        Please Jim don't quit yet since there is no guarantee the tool is going to cover all our need!


          Please make this tool to allow custom rigs, with the ability to add cloth and belts and props for characters so it can use the existing unreal animations. Pllllease, thinking creatures, animals as well


            Looking forward to use this, keep up the awesome work!


              this is perfect this would reduce like 5 long steps from the workflow


                Good news.
                As an architectural visualizer Important Connection that i wish between Unreal and blender is how to use blender object (mesh) directly by unreal engine, and when i update the object in blender it also update in unreal engine.


                  Hello! Guys, where to find this pipeline? I don't have it in a blender


                    Originally posted by Sergio Cavalli View Post
                    Hello! Guys, where to find this pipeline? I don't have it in a blender
                    I think it was just a demo, it's not available yet


                      Originally posted by bluemagic-UK View Post
                      Amazing news ... very excited to see this in the wild ... mad thanks for working on this team Epic whoop!

                      Some feedback and hopes and dreams (in order of importance). The same functionality as what Maya enjoys with Live Link would of course be amazing.

                      1) PRINCIPLED BSDF shader support (PBR is critical)
                      2) PARTICLE SUPPORT so we can use Blender as an alternative/companion to Niagara (This would be truly amazing and make my life so much easier)
                      3) NATIVE BLENDER SHADER support (Color Ramp, Math Nodes, Texture cords, Fresnel ...... drooling at the thought of this but we can "bake" to Principled BSDF in the meantime)
                      4) Great ANIMATION support in general for custom bone rigs (my main character is a quadruped) I wont be using mannequin much this year. And when I do use rigify I almost always customize it by adding or deleting bones.
                      5) PARTICLE SUPPORT for hair
                      6) ALLEMBIC can currently be used to export FLUID/CLOTH static/locked simulations ... it would be cool to do it all in one plugin
                      7) QUIXEL Megascans support for export .... I would much prefer to set up my scenes in Blender and then export them to Unreal as it's faster for me. But quixel has some rather complex shader node set ups so see item no 3.
                      8) OBJECT ORIGIN + World Origin for Meshes

                      [QUESTION] .... why not use the new open source Pixar USD format? The industry seems to be heading that way.

                      Please release this on Github .... I don't care if it's alpha/beta, I would love to get my hands on this and test it. Happy to do bug reporting too if it will help.

                      Hi, IMO some are not so important like

                      1) principled bsdf since they will need to rewrite what's in the Blender Node
                      3) why? PRINCIPLED + NATIVE SHADER?
                      7) there is a way of how to export quixel from unreal try to do it. just try.


                      8) object origin + world origin is already in the video have you watch the whole live stream? if not? try again to watch and if you don't understand it's content they provided a document on it.

                      4) I highly agree with this since assigning bone and retargeting from UE is kind of pain and they said they have a plan for this too so will be waiting on it.

                      the rest is so great that they really implement a livelink.

                      will be waiting on the RIGIFY thank you Kaye!


                        when it will be able for download ??? also can this addon send textures ( diffuse, normal and roughness ) ????


                          can't wait to get my hands on this!

                          One thing that would make my life sooo much easier: please fix the problem, that rigs are scaled by 100 internally in UE4 when exporting from blender.
                          They work fine, until you need to use physics assets, which suddenly behave as if they are 100 times bigger


                            Don't keep this addon hidden for the next year. Open source it and take community contributions. We already have some fantastically skilled people working on this now; surely things would progress faster.


                              Well done putting this together. The plug-in is freaking awesome and will reduce time for content creators whether an indie artist or using in a large studio


                                When is the expected release ? I couldn't find it in the "Addon" section in Blender 2.82 .
                                Is it out yet ?
                                Great initiative by epic !