Getting Started with Unreal

For some time now, I’ve been interested in learning my way around Unreal since it is such a commonly used engine in the industry (along with Unity). Unfortunately, the Unreal editor can be quite the resource hog, and my low spec laptop wasn’t up to the task. Now that I’ve upgraded to something more powerful, I can get started jumping into UDK.

Test 1 Screenshot 1

This first level is little more than a playground for me to test out some of UDK’s basic level design tools. I’m working into the habit creating a block the size of an average character before I start working to keep scale. I’ve gotten familiar with all of the BSP brushes, resizing and rotating them, and using them to lay out the basic structure of a level.

Test 1 Screenshot 2

I attempted to make use of stage lighting for artistic effect, but this was mostly done to learn my way around the lighting controls. As I work on more polished, fully fleshed out levels, I will use more of features such as these to give depth to levels created.

Test 1 Screenshot 3

This section of the level was an attempt at combining multiple bsp brushes to create single, complex structure. If this were an actual level, this open space, could be used as a close quarters combat encounter or brief story sequence to progress the game along. The spiral staircase is meant serve the dual purpose of being visually interesting and give the character access to the next section of the level.

Test 1 Screenshot 4

This final section makes use a variety of rotated blocks to create a short platforming sequence. The idea behind this section to work on being able estimate how far the character can jump based on just looking over a section of the map. Ideally, I want to intuitively build levels without having to constantly check if the character is capable of such movements based on their speed, jump height, etc.

Test 1 Screenshot 5

So that’s all for now. Up next, I’m going to try make use of terrain editing features and Kismet in a more fleshed out level. I’m most likely going to building levels for platformers rather than first person shooters because it fits better with my experience. I’m only a casual shooter fan, so it makes sense that I work around genres that I am more familiar with. It’s how I ensure the highest quality product.

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