Below are some notes from Getting Started in Unreal Engine


First we click the plus icon and select the version. When we click the install button we get a promt to choose instasll location. Here we can click the options button to choose we we want to include. If we know we are not interested in some of the target platforms we can uncheck them to avoid to have to download and install that data.

Settings & Prefs

Editor Preferences

Some editor prefs that I prefer to set (Houdini, Maya background)

  • Edit > Editor Preferences

    • General
      • Tutorials
        • Disable All Tutorial Alerts : ON
    • Level Editor
      • Viewports
        • Invert Middle Mouse Pan : On
  • Show / Collapse

    • In the menu right side of the search field there are some functions that helps us show / hide and collapse properties in theeditor prefs window.

Project Settings

  • Edit > Projects Settings
    • Project
      • Maps & Modes : Here you can setup some of the frameworks used in the project, defaults etc.
      • Target Hardware
        • Optimize project settings for
          • Desktop / Console
          • Quality
    • Engine
      • Input : Here we can setup the inputs
        • Bindings
          • Actions Mappings
            • Jump etc
          • Axis Mappings
            • Turn
            • LookUp

World Settings

Settings for the current level.


3D View

Game View (show as in game) G
Set Bookmark (3D View) Ctrl [0,1,2, …]
Go to Bookmark [0,1,2, …]
Immersive Mode (Full screen) F11
Focus Sekected F

Note that in the display settings are separate for the game view and the standard editor view. You can set them per view if needed.

Details panel

  • Edit parameters of multiple selected instances (that shares attributes)
    • Select the instances and in the top right corner of the details panel click the open selection in property matrix.
  • Open multiple details panels
    • You might want to copy or compare properties. To do this you can open up up to 4 details panels (Window > Details). Then you can lock the detail panel and it will keep the data when the instance is deselected.

Content Browser

  • View Options

    • View Type
      • Tile
      • List
      • Colums
    • View
      • Dock Collections
        • Collections is a way to gather / organize stuff that you want to find easier.
    • Content
      • Show Developers Content
        • The developers content is a folder used as a scratch pad, to try out things.
    • Thumbnails
      • Thumbnail edit mode
        • Lets you adjust the look of the tumbnail with the standard 3d view controls
  • To create a static collection (it will only contain stuff we put there explicitly) we make sure that we enabled dock collections in the view options menu of the content browser. Then we click the + icon and give it a name. We can now drag stuff in here.

  • To create a dynamic collection we can for instance search for some thing in the search assets field, then click the save icon to the right of the input field to save as a dynamic collection.

Add Content

Migrate assets

  • Migrate a static mesh
    • Open the project you want to migrate from
    • Select the asset in the 3D view
    • Browse to the asset (3 ways)
      • Ctrl B (will browse to the selected asset)
      • In the worl outliner RMB click > Browse to Asset
      • In the details panel in the static mesh section click the looking glass icon.
    • In the content browser, RMB click the static mesh > Asset Actions > Migrate (This will popup a dialog the shows all the assets associated with the static mesh). Press OK to migrate.
    • A dialog will promt you for a destination folder. Select th content folder of the project we wish to migrate to.
  • Migrate a level
    • To migrate an entire level we use the same process as above.
    • We can use a filter to show only the levels in our project. Make sure that we are in the root folder of our project. You can click the root folder in the “bread crumb menu” at the top of the content browser. Then click the filter button in the top left of the content browser an select level. This wil show all the lecels in our projects.
    • Another way is to search for it by name. Navigate to the root folder of the project and in the search field at the top of the content browser enter the name of the level (if the level is open in the 3d view we can find the name of the tab next to the UE logo at the top bar).
    • With the level located do the same process as above to migrate.

Lighting & Visual Effetcts


Directional light

Simulates a light source that is infinitely far away. The shadows cast is parallell.

  • Lights > Directional light
    • Transform
      • Mobility
        • Static
          • Use baking / lightmap
        • Stationary
        • Moveable
    • Light
      • Intensity
      • Light Color
    • Light Shaft
      • Light Shaft Occlusion
      • Light Shaft Bloom
      • Bloom Scale
      • Bloom Max Brightness

Sky Light

The light in the parts shadowed by the directional light. Captures the distant parts of your level and applies that to the scene as a light. That means the sky’s appearance and its lighting/reflections will match, even if your sky is coming from atmosphere, or layered clouds on top of a skybox, or distant mountains. You can also manually specify a cubemap to use.

  • Lights > Sky light
    • Light
      • Intensity Scale : 4
        • Atleast Set to higher than 1
      • Light Color

Visual Effects

Post Process Volume

Unreal Engine provides Post Process Effects to allow artists and designers to tweak the overall look and feel of the scene. Examples of elements and effects include bloom (HDR blooming effect on bright objects), ambient occlusion, and tone mapping.

  • Visual Effects > Post Process Volume
    • Lens
      • Exposure
        • Exposure Compensation : OFF
          • Logarithmic adjustment for the exposure. Only used if a tonemapper is specified. 0: no adjustment, 1: 2x brighter, 2: 4x brighter
        • Min Brightness : 1
          • Auto exposure min adaptation. Eye adaptation is disabled if min == max
        • Max Brightness : 1
          • Auto exposure max adaptation. Eye adaptation is disabled if min == max

Sky Atmosphere

  • Visual Effects > Sky Atmosphere

Setup simple lighting

  • Drag and drop a Directional light from the palce actors panel to the 3d view
    • Atmosphere and Clound
      • Atmosphere Sun Light : ON
        • With this enabled the light can interact with a sky atmosphere
  • Drag in a Sky Atmosphere


Input mapping

  • Mouse input in blueprint
    To be able to use a mouse input in our blueprint we need a mapping to exist. Here is how we can setup one:
    • Open the axis mapping section in the project settings (Engine > Input > Bindings > Axis Mappings)
    • Under the Axis mappings click the + icon.
    • Give the mapping a name, for instance turn
    • In the dropdown under the namefield choouse Mouse > Mouse X
    • In the blueprint editor press tab and start typing turn
    • when you see it in the list select the Input > Axis Event > turn
    • Then we can connect the exec pin to the exec pin of the controller
    • And the axis output to the value input of teh controller


  • Display extended tooltip
    • Ctrl Alt mouse hoover over the ui element
  • Tumble the 3D view Maya style
    • Alt LMB
  • Discard none saved changes
    • Located the map in the content browser. If there are unsaved changes there will be an asterisc in the lower right corner if the map icon. If you LMB double click it you will be presented with a promt where you can choose dont save, this will revert back to the last saved state.
  • Add Contnet
    • One way to add content is to click the Add/Import button in the top right corner of the Content browser.
  • Browse to the selected asset
    • Ctrl B
    • Note That if you do not want the content browser to browse to the asset you can click the lock icon in the top right of the content browser. This will open up a new content browser to display the asset we browsed to.
  • Duplicate and move selected
    • Hold alt and translate the selected mesh
  • ** Move the camera and the selected object
    • Hold Shift when translating
  • Snap selected object to closest surface below
    • Press End key
  • Disconnect an input in blueprint
    • Alt LMB click the input
  • Project Info
    • In the top right corner you will find the name of the project and if you hover it will show more info.


Project Structure

This is the structure of a basic blueprint project.

  • MyProject
    • Config
      Required. Project specific settings, like input mappings etc.
    • Content
      Required. The content of the project, like meshes, textures etc.
      • Developer folder
      • Collections folder
    • Intermediate
      This folder is safe to delete. It contains temorary files that are used in the intermediate step when the projects is built and when you are using the engine. If this folder is deleted the project will take longer to launch, but all the files will be recreated.
    • Saved
      Contains chrash logs, backup, autosave etc. Could be deleted if you know what you are doing but there are things here that can not be recreated.
    • MyProject.uproject
      Required. The project file. Depending on the project if there are some additional files in the project root, they could also be required.

A cpp project has the same as above but also some initial files.

  • MyProject

    • .vs
      VS Code specific folder, contains data for autocomplete etc. Could be deleted.
    • Binaries
      Is a temporary folder that is recreated everytime the project is built. Could be deleted. Could also be good to delete if you have some werid issues or if the project is not packaging correctly.
    • Source
      Required. This is the source folder for the cpp project. Should not be deleted. Could be deleted if you for some reason would like the project to be a blueprint only. Then we also should edit the .uproject file and get rid of the modules section.
    • MyProject.sln
      Required. The VS Code solution file.
  • Remove a plugin

    • If a project is using a plugin and we do not have that available to us we could edit the .uproject file in a text editor and remove that part of the text file.

Cached Downloads

The cache location is usually in C:/Program Files (x86)/Epic Games/Launcher/VaultCache/. The location of the cache dowloads foilder could be changed in the settings tab of the launcher. Could be a good idea to go into the folder and remove stuff that you do not use anymore. Since the downloads are versioned (there will be a version number at the end of the dir name) we can safely remove dirs for the version of the engine that we donot use anymore. You can also use the dropdown in the vault section of the launcher to remove downlaods.

DDC - Derived Data Cache

Stores version of the cassets that are used by the specific version and platform of the project. This files are different from the source assets files. For instance, When the editor is compiling shaders it is taking the assets and compiling them to the appropriate format and storing them in the DDC. This means that when we launch a project the editor will use this cached versions of the assets so that we donot have to recomplie them.

On windows the ddc is located here: User > AppData > Local > Unreal Engine. They will be stored in folders named for the version they were compiled for. This means that if we do not use a specfic version any longer we could delete the folder to ave space. Note that all the files and folders will be recreated if they are needed, but this will take some time.

We could change the location for the DDC, to a shared space on the network, so that a group working together could share the DDC folder.