This is my first scene in Unreal Engine 4. I used foliage, leaves, trees, rock, and water from the Unreal Marketplace. On the left there is a waterfall, and on the right, there is a forest trail.
Tips and tricks for creating this scene:
- Before making any scene, plan out the assets you need and where the assets go. I did the planning in my mind for this scene.
- Using planar reflection to capture a clear and high quality reflection on the surface of the water. UE4 blends the water waves with the reflected image.
- NEVER add any assets that cannot be seen into map from the viewport. This will save a lot of space and render time. There is absolutely nothing behind the viewport, to the right of the trees in the right, and to the left of the waterfall.
- Only place leaf particle emitters near the viewport. Any farther and they won’t be seen.
- Light shafts can be created by adding atmospheric fog to the map and enabling light shaft occlusion and light shaft bloom. Play around with the values to find the one that suits your scene. This adds a lot more realism to the lighting.
- To make the shadows less dark, I added an atmospheric lighting with an intensity of 1 to the scene. The trail to the right will be more visible.
- The variation of the tree leaves color is made by multiplying red color with the base tree color of green.
- I had to add a slight red/yellow tint to the scene to make it look more realistic. The atmospheric fog, atmospheric lighting and the sky will cause the scene to have a slight bluish tint. Again, play with the values to make the scene look better.
- Remember to optimize if you are rendering a lot of things. But, also remember that since scenes are not supposed to be played ingame, you can add a lot more assets than normal.
- Use static mesh instancing if you are using many of the same mesh. All trees and foliage were painted with the foliage editor, which automatically makes them instanced meshes.
Video (Rendering into video and viewport movements were made using UE4’s Sequence editor.):
Thanks for reading!