Unreal Engine: Adding Lights and Atmosphere

All, Game & Software Engineering, Game Development, Unreal Engine Tutorials & Support

So far we’ve looked at creating a level and adding basic assets to an Empty Level. Today we’ll be looking a bit more at adding actors to our newly created level. Specifically, we’ll be looking at adding a Light source and an Atmosphere to the world we’ve just created. Let’s get started!

After following the instructions in the last article, you should have an empty flat level with some kind of actor on the level. This is where we’ll be building from.

  1. In the Modes Panel, select the Lights tab then drop a Directional Light into the level on top of the floor
  2. Use the Translation Tool to click and drag the Z-axis/blue line away from the surface of the floor

Great, we’ve now got a Directional Light in the level. Time to add an atmosphere. From the Modes Panel select the Visual Effects tab. Select, then drag and drop the Atmospheric Fog option to the level. This adds a basic sky and should make the level light.

Next we want to add a Player starting location to the level. So, go back to the Modes Panel and select the Basic tab. Drag and drop the Player Start asset into the level.

Finally, we need to add a Light Importance Volume to the level. This is used to control the lighting and shadowing effects within the area. Go to the Volumes tab in the Modes Panel then drop a Light Importance Volume into the level. As the default size doesn’t cover the level, we need to press R inside the Level Viewport to activate the Scale Tool. Then we need to click and drag the box to make it large enough to cover the entire floor.

And just like that we’ve added a basic light setup and atmosphere to our level. You’ll probably want to delete any props on the level for the next article as we’ll be building a small room this week. We’ll cover deleting assets next time incase you haven’t figured it out by then. For now, keep exploring the Unreal Engine and see if you can find out how to delete an asset!


This post was provided by Clare from Lunawolf Gaming

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