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of EPICs games which includes the unreal series and the Gears of War series. This purpose of this article is to introduce you to the Unreal 3 Engine and to get you started in creating your own levels.
About the Unreal Engine
The Unreal Engine is a fantastic piece of software that is bundled into most of the games created by the company EPIC. It is basically the toolset that the company uses to produce the games they are currently selling. The unique thing about the Unreal Engine is that you can use it to create an entirely different game. The Unreal Engine has been used to create several games that you may be familiar with such as: Deus Ex, Brothers in Arms, Lineage 2, Tom Clancy Rainbow 6 and Splinter Cell series, Vanguard, BioShock, Mass Effect and many more. So as you can see you are able to use the Engine to create anything from a FPS to an MMORPG or simply a new level for the game itself.
Before you even open the Unreal Tournament 3 Level Editor it is a good idea of have a general idea of what you want your level to look like. How many rooms do you want to be in your level? What type of theme do you want to use? It is going to be an indoor level, an outdoor level or a combination of the two? Are you going to allow vehicles in your level? How many players should the level be able to hold?
A good tip is to buy you some graphing paper and draw up a rough sketch of all this info. Draw squares for rooms and place symbols inside the room for the items or vehicles you think should be placed there. This will make designing your level go a lot faster and a lot smoother.
Navigation Go ahead and left click in the perspective view port. a top down view. F. Before you start making your level you need to be able to move around inside the viewport. You can hold the left mouse button and drag your mouse or you can use your scroll wheel to zoom in and out. While it is totally acceptable to only use one of these views. These viewports are what you are going to be using to navigate through your level in design mode. The viewports consist of a perspective view (or a 3d view). a viewport with the icon P depressed means that it is the perspective viewport. windows that are called viewports. T. They are labeled P. Moving around in the other viewports is really simple. and S which stands for each type of the respective viewport. Holding down the right mouse button only allows you to pitch the view at any angle. Starting up the level editor can take anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes depending on the type of computer you are using. So.Once you have your basic level design thought out you should now start up the level editor. it is a good idea to get into the practice of using all of the viewports to help you place everything in your level on a more accurate level. down. it can be easily fixed by clicking on the icons above the viewport. When the editor loads you are presented with 4. . If you use any of the other movements you will mess up the viewport. Holding both mouse buttons at the same allows you to move up. You should practice moving around the perspective viewport until you get the hang of it. Moving around is done by using the mouse buttons and moving your mouse. a side view and a front view. You can tell which viewport is which by taking a look at the icons above each viewport. If you hold the left mouse button down and drag your mouse around you are able to move in a 360 degree rotation and can move forwards and backwards. left and right. rather large. however.
which will determine the size of the room and its placement. A small window will pop-up asking you what type of level you want to make. To the left of the viewports you will see a toolbar with a few icons. additive or subtractive. Its default size and placement will we fine for now. we can start building our level. Go ahead and click on it once. move your view around until you see a red wireframe box. Click file > New. . This is called a brush. Since our level will be small and indoors we are going to use a subtractive level. This carves out our first room which is depicted by a checkerboard type texture. For now only concern yourself with the CSG: Subtract button. The first thing we need to do is create a new level. Using your perspective viewport.Our First Room Now that we have the basics of movement down.
For now. ASC_Walls2.upk. Open. . In order to change the texture of the walls. Then select any one of the walls. ASC_Walls. floors and ceilings we must first start by selecting them. You can find all the available textures by navigating to C:\Program Files\Unreal Tournament 3\UTGame\CookedPC\Environments. On the top toolbar click the generic browser button to open the generic browser (if it isn’t already opened). Doing this will select all walls inside that room. We first need to navigate to where all of the textures are. This window in itself has a lot of info that we will not get into right now. navigate to the center of the room. This will bring up an Open Package dialog. right click on the wall and click Select Surfaces and then Adjacent Walls. ASC_Floor. ASC_Floor2.Adding Textures The default texture for our room is a bit bland and simply won’t do.upk. Holding ctrl on your keyboard. it should turn a light blue color.upk and ASC_Walls_Stone.upk extension.upk and then click open. Once selected. In your perspective view port.upk. From the file menu go ahead and click File.upk. From this window you can see a bunch of files with the . wall and ceiling textures to our generic browser. We are mainly concerned with just browsing the textures. click ASC_Door. all we are concerned with is adding some floor.
In order to get a better idea of what all these textures look like. hold and drag the red arrow to the left or right. In order to do this. Changing the texture on the floor and ceiling is the same process. click the plane primitive icon in the generic browser. This will pop up the brush builder window. right click on the cube icon to the left. Browse through all the different textures and click on one that you think looks good. This will create a second room with the last texture you used from creating the first room. Click the red box and a movement gizmo will appear. Click the floor until it gets highlighted in the light blue color. Move the generic browser to the side so you can see both your perspective viewport and the generic browser. click the CSG: Subtract button to the left. If you take a look at your perspective viewport you will see that it applied the texture to your walls. Y and Z properties and set them to the following (32. Click on the X. Make sure that it is far enough away from the room we just created to allow space for a hallway. . you have a textured room! Adding another room Left click once anywhere in the side viewport. then navigate your generic browser for a floor texture and viola. Click. Once again. 128.128). Adding the hallway In order to create a realistic hallway we need to resize our brush. Repeat the process above to add the textures to the room.
Once this is done you can click the CSG: Subtract icon again which adds the hallway in between the two rooms. Once you have done this and lined them up perfectly in the side viewport. In the next tutorial we are going to place lights. . Click the smaller box and use the blue arrow on the gizmo and move the box down to match the picture below. You may need to zoom in quite a bit to ensure that the lines meet up exactly. we need to bring the hallway down to the ground level. add a few weapons and a player start so we can actually see our level inside the game.Now you need to line up the brush to fit in between the two rooms. align our textures. We do this by using the front viewport. If you are unable to line those up perfectly change your grid settings to 1. The grid settings can be found on the bottom right corner of the editor. so left click once in the front viewport.
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