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    New User to Unreal Engine - From Unity3D

    Hi there!

    As my subject says, I'm a new user to Unreal Engine from Unity3D. I wanted to take a few minutes to write about my experience so far, even though in a month from now it will be irrelevant as I will have figured out everything I am writing to you about today.

    Please don't take any of this as "slamming" UE4 - I am going to use UE4 over Unity. I hoped you might want some feedback from someone who has absolutely no experience in UE4 but has a lot of experience in Unity, because there's a conversion taking place here and UE4 should have been where I started 7 years ago.

    Getting started in UE4 is not as scary after coming from Unity3D, but working with free projects is. There seems to be a lot of different ways a project can be done in UE4 (and I'm not talking about the different styles like third person, first person, architecture, etc.), but you can accomplish the same goals multiple ways, such as.... Blueprints Only, BluePrints + C++, or just C++. This was the most confusing part to me is to see someone else's project mixing them together.

    I have positive feedback about UE4 and I'm sure it will continue to grow, but I think there are some things that are nearly impossible for someone first starting out:
    1. Navigating and finding where to go felt a bit alien. I was able to do some searching but I think due to my missing knowledge of how everything is connected, I was hoping to have a "Find Anything Anywhere" feature and get straight to something...
      1. I was able to use Reference Viewer but this was still a lot of steps to get to something - usually deep nested.
    2. Graph object naming was really confusing to me. I was hoping to see programmatic naming conventions or friendly versions of them, but some were descriptive that made no connection between a namespace/class or friendly name of one. I feel like I have to relearn everything I know now about blueprint style development.
    3. The biggest one: Collaboration is built into UE but if I'm not mistaken, a collab has to trade all original files (my first collab commit was 8.02 GB for the Medieval Dungeon Package). I could not push this to GitHub or GitLab, it would take 3 days on my connection (1 MBPS upload - welcome to AT&T).
    4. Even though UE is easier to get up and running than Unity, there's still an enormous amount of configuration that will take a while to figure out while developing as a hobby. I feel like some of the options should be hidden unless the user clicks "Show advanced options" or something.

    Stepping in to a prebuilt project....

    Project: ActionRPG (downloaded it free from the Marketplace) - I believe this is a product not owned by Epic Games, so it's not a review of their package...

    - At first it was difficult because I didn't fully understand all of the content types and graph types (I guess education would resolve this?)
    - Not only that but it felt like there was "graph nesting" - such as graphs within graphs and this was kind of confusing. (Is my assumption correct, or were these just references?)
    - There were uses of CONSTANTS in the graphs but I had no idea where they were set other than their Default value.
    - The project came with easter eggs (bugs) either hidden on purpose or left on accident for someone like me to find and repair to learn how it worked.

    This feedback sucked. I hope you find something in it useful.

    Thanks for making UE, it's really awesome !

    #2
    Originally posted by Groot Llama View Post
    .... Blueprints Only, BluePrints + C++, or just C++. This was the most confusing part to me is to see someone else's project mixing them together.
    Welcome! I also began with Unity as well as other game engines prior to my Unreal adventure. The main difference between blueprint and C++ project is that you have the source code files in the project, and you need Visual Studio installed, but unless you intend to code it isn't really that much of a big deal.

    Perhaps the biggest challenge in Unreal is a steep learning curve paired with a heavy compartmentalized structure, which results in the requirement to address relevant components when dealing with an issue. So you may have a broken or wrongly configured blueprint node in blueprint_a, but while you only work on a child blueprint of blueprint_a you first did not expect to bother checking again the previous blueprint nodes.

    Sometimes something is not working as expected, and most of the times it comes down to wrong blueprint code, and getting the blueprint nodes setup correctly, and which one to use, and how to set them up correctly takes time and dedication to master. It took me roughly a period of 3 years working on and off to understand most of Unreal.

    The best advise I can give you for a start, plan simple, start with working on a small project, use those library project examples as a starting point.

    Cheers!
    [LEGENDS of EPICA][Twitter][FB][YT][Vimeo][Reallusion Technical Expert]

    Comment


      #3
      Welcome to UE and to the community! Thanks for the feedback. There's always things our team can continue to improve upon, but I hope using UE also starts to become second nature to you in the near future.

      Cheers!
      Stephen Ellis | Enterprise Program Coordinator

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Groot Llama View Post
        The biggest one: Collaboration is built into UE but if I'm not mistaken, a collab has to trade all original files (my first collab commit was 8.02 GB for the Medieval Dungeon Package). I could not push this to GitHub or GitLab, it would take 3 days on my connection (1 MBPS upload - welcome to AT&T).
        Yep, Epic doesn't provide any proprietary repository solution. Especially that using the engine is entirely free of charge. You share profits with them, but you don't have to pay anything during development. You're expected to manage source control of your choice.
        It's up to you set up your repository. You can always local repository server on your machine if you just need a quick Unreal setup.

        Originally posted by Groot Llama View Post
        Even though UE is easier to get up and running than Unity, there's still an enormous amount of configuration that will take a while to figure out while developing as a hobby. I feel like some of the options should be hidden unless the user clicks "Show advanced options" or something.
        Sure, the engine needs a lot better docs for beginners as this truly complex beast. It's getting much better with time as you grasp more and more concepts. This is an AAA-grade set of tools that can be managed/tamed by just a few enthusiasts, tailored for the specific needs.

        It would simply impossible to judge what's "beginner" and "advanced" features, that depend on specific needs.
        Look at lightning tools, there are just a few classes (a few types of lights, two types of fog, skylight, a new Sky Atmosphere) that are used in nearly every setup, from the hobbyist through indie to AAA. You just learn it better over time.

        It just... we never got a proper and official "beginner game developer course" that would explain basic engine/editor concepts so it would be easier to find yourself in the Unreal. Such course (or set of different courses explaining basics from different angles) should explain basics. For now, we just got a brief explanation "how to click in blueprints", but not a proper guide "why".

        PS And you always ask questions on the unofficial Discord server - called Unreal Slackers. People there will quickly explain things

        Comment


          #5
          I think you should take some time to watch all the videos they have over at youtube, specially presentations like these:

          https://youtu.be/2edoacF53F0
          https://youtu.be/j6mskTgL7kU
          | Savior | USQLite | FSM | Object Pool | Sound Occlusion | Property Transfer | Magic Nodes | MORE |

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks for all the replies and the warm welcomes. I've learned a lot in the last few days, especially the length of time it takes to package a project (20GB unpackaged) to 5GB packaged. If you're not careful you can get yourself trapped in a 20-30 minute operation.

            Another thing I would like to see in UE is some hidden processes to be more progress driven, such as I've been waiting 10 minutes already for ParagonAurora to delete because I have no idea if I've messed her up and want to start fresh.

            I agree with everything you guys said and I hope to see you around.

            Thanks

            Comment

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