UN­REAL EN­GINE 4

3D Artist - - 35 TIPS TO SUPERCHARGE REAL-TIME RENDERS -

CAM­ERA LENGTH

The Un­real En­gine 4 Cine Cam­era Ac­tor is great for re-cre­at­ing the cam­eras you see in films! You can se­lect a pre­set that mim­ics cam­eras like an IMAX 70mm, or set up your own. I usu­ally aim for a 35-55mm lense for an en­vi­ron­ment scene.

DI­REC­TIONAL LIGHT­ING

The di­rec­tional light in­ten­sity is set to 10 by de­fault (in ver­sion 4.18 and be­low) when you drag it in – but that can be too strong de­pend­ing on the kind of scene you are cre­at­ing. 3.14 is a good value for a grey over­cast day and up to 10 is great for a hot, hot desert. In Un­real En­gine 4.19, this has changed to us­ing Phys­i­cal light units, now mak­ing this even eas­ier to set up!

SKY­LIGHT

Try to choose a suit­able cube map that fits your scene as best you can. There is no point us­ing a night-time HRDI if you are try­ing to cre­ate a re­al­is­tic an or­ange desert scene. You can also ad­just the amount of bounces that the sky­light sup­ports dur­ing a light­bake in World Set­tings>light­mass.

ALBEDO VAL­UES

As Un­real En­gine 4 uses a PBR sys­tem, its light­ing re­lies heav­ily on ma­te­ri­als be­ing cor­rect. Try to make sure your albedo val­ues are right for the ma­te­rial that you are rep­re­sent­ing. If it's too dark, you may find your light bounces dur­ing bake do not have much ef­fect and you may also find your rough­ness not re­act­ing to light cor­rectly, too.

POST-PRO­CESS­ING

Post-pro­cess­ing tools like Colour Lookup Ta­bles are pow­er­ful for adding that fi­nal pol­ish to your scene. But make sure not to jump into this be­fore you have your ma­te­ri­als and light­ing all set up cor­rectly as this can skew your re­sults and you might end up with some­thing rather funky.

LOG­I­CAL PIVOT SET-UP

When build­ing larger lev­els with many props that are in­stanced, make sure that you have set up your piv­ots in a log­i­cal way and that you keep them in the same place through­out up­dat­ing the mesh it­self. This re­moves the need to go in and ad­just all the lo­ca­tions inside your game en­gine.

VOLUMETRIC FOG AND LIGHT­ING

In Un­real En­gine 4.19, the way in which volumetric fog and light­ing works has been re­vamped and it now more ac­cu­rately de­picts Cre­ate the grass Let’s start off by fig­ur­ing out which pieces of fo­liage you will be need­ing for your biome. Once this has been de­cided upon, you can now cre­ate the dif­fer­ent bits of fo­liage that you will need and edit all of the ver­tex nor­mals to be point­ing straight up so that there will be no harsh in­ter­sec­tions with the ground inside Un­real En­gine 4. Now let’s go ahead and as­sign ver­tex colours to the model so that the base is black and the tips are white for use when set­ting up the grass move­ment. De­vise the grass types Cre­ate a Land­scape Grass Type by rightclick­ing in the con­tent browser and finding it un­der the Mis­cel­la­neous tab. Click on the + sym­bol to add a new el­e­ment. In the Grass Mesh slot, add the grass mesh that you have cre­ated. You can add mul­ti­ple meshes to this or even make new grass type ac­tors to con­trol their pa­ram­e­ters and where they spawn on the ter­rain sep­a­rately. the ma­te­rial Make a masked ma­te­rial with the two-sided fo­liage shad­ing model and plug in ba­sic dif­fuse, al­pha and nor­mal tex­tures. Plug the dif­fuse into the sub­sur­face colour with an op­tional mul­ti­plier. Cre­ate a Sim­ple Grass Wind (SGW) and con­nect it to World Po­si­tion Off­set. Add a Ver­tex Color node and plug the red chan­nel into the Wind Weight of the SGW. Cre­ate two con­stant vec­tors for the Wind In­ten­sity, Wind Speed and Ad­di­tional WPO, and tweak the val­ues to con­trol the ef­fect of the wind. tweak the grass pa­ram­e­ters Now al­ter the pa­ram­e­ters in the Land­scape grass type ac­tor. I set the min and max sizes to around 0.9 and 1.1 for some scale vari­a­tion. For the main grass, leave the den­sity at 400. I also have Ran­dom Ro­ta­tion and Align To Sur­face checked. Now you are free to set up any other grass types and build up your scene. Com­bine them with fo­liage paint­ing to build up unique and in­ter­est­ing ar­eas in your level.

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