Assign a proper sound on assets (materials, MIC, SM, BV & GV)

By following this tutorial, you’ll be able to assign a appropriate sound on all BSP materials or any static meshes in your level. When I mentioned ‘assets’, I am referring to the content included with the game that incorporate everything. That is materials, static meshes (aka SM), some particle system, some emitters, etc…

Many stock assets are already configured with the corresponding sound. For example, the assets made of ‘Wood’ use the ‘PM_Wood’ sound and other materials made of steel or iron also use the ‘PM_Metal’ sound. However, several other assets use inadequate sound. I saw glass assets using metal sound? Go figure…

Take note that when creating a new material from scratch, it doesn’t have a particular sound assigned by default so the engine use the terrain sound ingame. Also, when duplicating assets, the sound used by those assets may not be adequate at first, so always validate if the sound match the asset.

It is important to understand that any modification of stock assets should never be made. If you intent to change something from a stock asset, it is mandatory to copy this asset in your map (which I have a tutorial for that) or create a MIC  (MaterialInstanceConstant) and then modify this asset & use it in your map. Always avoid any modification of stock assets.

1. To assign a sound to a BSP material, load your map, open up the Generic browser & locate your map package. You must edit or create the material through the material editor. For example, I create this brand new material that is called ‘Test’. By opening this material, locate the first field labeled PhysMaterial in blue. You can see there is no sound assigned. To add / change the sound, simply click on the magnifying glass.

1.1 The Generic browser should now open. Now locate the PhysicalMaterials package do a right click & select ‘Fully load’. You can see all Epic physical sounds are now available.

1.2 For this example, I just select ‘PM_Default’ that is corresponding to the terrain sound. Now close the Generic browser.

1.3 By returning to the material editor, only click on the green arrow (the one beside the magnifying glass) to assign the new sound & finally save the change & your map. your done😀

2. To assign a sound to a MIC (MaterialInstanceConstant), it’s very similar to a regular material. The good thing about MIC it will allow you to use the stock material and just apply a different physical sound & change other settings to it without duplicating the entire material. This will help reduce the map file size. So now, load your map, open up the Generic browser & locate your map package. You must edit or create the MIC through your map package. For example, I create this brand new MIC that is called ‘Test2’. By opening this MIC, locate the second field labeled PhysMaterial in blue (note the first field labeled ‘Parent’ is to assign the existing material, the master material if you like). Again, you can see there is no sound assigned. To add / change the sound, simply follow the same BSP method, close the MIC when finish, apply the material somewhere & save your map.

3. To assign a sound to a SM (Static Meshes), load your map & select your SM. Press F4 to bring the properties up. The field is located under StaticMeshActor\StaticMeshComponent\Physics and is called PhysMaterialOverride. As you did for the BSP, to change the sound, simply click on the magnifying glass, select the PhysicalMaterials package do a right click & select ‘Fully load’, select the desired sound, close the Generic browser, click on the green arrow (the one beside the magnifying glass) to assign the new sound & finally save your map.

4. To assign a sound to a BV (Blocking Volume) or a GV (Gravity Volume), just select your BV / GV in your map. As the SM, press F4 to bring the properties up. The field is located under Collision\CollisionComponent and is called PhysMaterialOverride. As you did for the SM, to change the sound, simply click on the magnifying glass, select the PhysicalMaterials package do a right click & select ‘Fully load’, select the desired sound, close the Generic browser, click on the green arrow (the one beside the magnifying glass) to assign the new sound & finally save your map. For BV, this method is useful when your BV surround a bunch of SM which have there collision set to none & you want to assign a specific sound on all those SM inside the BV or GV.  Note that for assets inside a GV they will loose there specific designated sound & use the one that as been set in the GV. If nothing as been set in the GV, then, the default sound (the terrain one) is use. This is quite ridiculous for assets located in space if they are something else than a terrain… In this example I assign the metal sound to my BV. It’s the same thing for a GV.

I want to point out that to really obtain a polished map, appropriate sounds are essential on all assets, not only those on the floor. Why you may ask? Well, the experience is better if when you shoot on wood or in water it sound like wood or water instead of nothing or terrain for stone tiles on the ground. I suggest that all custom assets use a appropriate sound & also validate if all stock assets used in your level is using the appropriate sound.

Hope it help & if this as help you enhance your map, I’ll be happy you let me know😉

6 comments

  1. nice tuto bro…..i finaly decide me to set the sounds on my wood floors
    very well done and easy to understand
    thx😉

    Like

  2. oh wow, i think i need to make a video tutorial on that and post it on my page as well.
    I have a few out there already but this would be a great addition to current collection.
    I dont know why i didnt make many for UT3, but i have quiet few for UT2004🙂 all posted on my page at adrenalineparty.com

    Like

  3. Well, why would you bother making a video since I already made all the work here ?

    You can simply do as I did about my ‘Ressources (for mappers / moders)’ page & add the link to here instead🙂

    Like

  4. After helping another mapper, we discover that if assets are inside a GV (Gravity Volume) & have designated sound, they’re lost.

    To check that out, I made a simple test with a space map of mine & it work flawlessly so I add the GV in the tut🙂

    Like

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