I've been watching the tutorial videos on the Level Editing series here. As in the tutorial, I'm also trying to build a small office level but only because the starter pack makes it convenient as it already comes with props such as desks, office chairs and the like. Moreover, last week I was able to create the basic barebones of my scene (floors, walls, pillars, sliding windows). I still got to add the lighting and the props so I've been editing in wireframe mode as shown on the pic. Doesn't it look like the matrix? XD So today, I focused on the mechanics of making the glass window slide. For that I got introduced to the engine's Blueprints feature: the engine's visual scripting system. I got to say that its a pretty awesome feature. I was really impressed by its live debugging capabilities. After following along the tutorial and setting up my trigger box, my timeline for vector transformation using cubic interpolation, and my Blueprints logic. I finally got my window to slide as well. But mine is sliding on the wrong axis!... I'll tweak this next time.
After completing the basic tutorials on the UE4 Editor (both video and written) I decided to explore some on my own. Using some assets found in the starter pack (i.e., static meshes and materials) I set up this simple but nice looking scene. It depicts the unreal logo in a metallic/gold material while for the floor I'm using some kind of oak wood material. I've placed a directional light that emulates the sun and turned on fog. For future reference, you can take screenshots of a running game by pressing '~' and then typing 'Shot' in the run time console. There are still plenty of tutorials to go through and still got to figure out what is the whole 'Blueprints' feature that I keep hearing about.
While the Linux community works on improving UE4 Editor port, I'll be working and learning on the official Windows port in the meanwhile. I figured that covering the basics is challenging enough without having to deal with platform compatibility issues on top of that. I got to say that I'm amazed at how beautifully the editor is coupled to Visual Studio (in my case I'm using 'Community 2013' and its working great). I'm not going to blog about how I built the engine on Windows since it was pretty much automatic once the Visual Studio solution project file had been generated. Plus, the README in the repository as well as the official documentation in the website is pretty robust (unlike for Linux). After I had successfully built the editor I followed the first Programming Tutorial and was able to print "Hello UE4 World" on the screen via an actor. That was cool :D My plan of action is as follows: Before digging deeper through the code, go through all the video tutorials on the UE4 Editor first and get familiar with the graphical interfaces of UE4 Engine. This will give you an intuition of what is going under the hood. This intuition will come in handy later on when messing with the code. Make sure to also go through this quick tutorial on UE4 Editor Basics and maybe create a cool rendering demo as a test of how much you learned. Question: The UE4 Editor seems more powerful than what I thought at the beginning... Do I really need to learn Blender?
I finally understood that the current state of UE4 on Linux is still lagging behind compared to its counterparts in Windows and Mac. For example, even I tho I was able to build the UE4 Editor natively, the Editor doesn't support any IDE on Linux right now. As such, there is not much that I could do as a novice to the UE4 world. Maybe later, as I learn more about the engine, I can come back to my Linux setup and make use of the Cmake files. Moreover, I was also able to understand from both the wiki and from the twitch stream 1 & 2 that progress is still being made on the Linux front. But, progress is being done very slowly and its mainly on the hands on the community right now. I do have faith in the community and I'm pretty sure they are going to start making breakthroughs pretty soon. However, with work starting on Monday and school starting in the next coming week I won't be able to support the community effort. I'm afraid that if I want to continue my learning adventure on the UE4 I will have to jump to Windows with its Visual Basic :( I'm very sad about it but I'm a practical person. I really hope the community is able to bring us a linux toolchain setup so we can start developing awesome UE4 games and demos from within Linux. Will be checking back on their progress often. Note to self: you might want to check this thread every once in a while.
At first I tried building the code base via an IDE. In other words, tried generating both CodeBlocks and KDevelop projects using CMake like this:
However, after importing these projects into their respective IDE's, none of them worked. I found it odd that KDevelop didn't work for me as many people reported success this way, so, I asked the community here. While waiting on that response I've moved ahead and 'manually' compiled the engine (i.e., generated the Unix Makefiles) as follows:
I'm not sure the install prefix was necessary as I don't think there is even a install rule defined in the Cmake file but I'm still a rookie at it so not sure.. Anyways, at the end (compilation took around 15-20 mins) I was able to execute the editor successfully. I'll call it a night for now. Note to self: Later on, you might want to enhance the root makefile by adding a cleaning method as described here.
I'm a software engineer with a passion for computer graphics.