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Packaging Projects (Android & Windows) Unreal Engine 4

Packaging Projects (Android & Windows) Unreal Engine 4. Learn how to properly package projects in Unreal Engine 4 for Android & Windows platforms.

The essentials

The first step that you need to make before distributing your Unreal Engine 4 project to the users is to properly package the project in the proper format to run on the desired target platform.

Packaging Projects, means that the code is compiled, and all the required content will be converted, or "cooked," into a format that can be used by the target platform, and your entire project will be bundled into a distributable set of files, such as an installer.

Under the main File menu, there is an option called Package Project, with a submenu. This submenu provides a list of all supported platforms for which you can package your project.

The main steps

First you need to set a Game Default Map, which will load when your packaged game starts. To set the Game Default Map, click on Edit > Project Settings > Maps & Modes > Default Maps > select a map as your Game Default Map (I recommend to use the level in which you have set up the main menu)

Second step, enable the compressed cooked packages option in the Project Settings, this will reduce the APK package size. Click on Edit > Project Settings > Packaging > Advanced Properties that is at the bottom of the Packaging settings > look for the option labeled Create compressed cooked packages and enable it.

To package a project for a specific platform, click on File > Package Project > [PlatformName] in the Editor's main menu. You will be presented with a dialog for selecting the target directory. If packaging completes successfully, this directory will then contain the packaged project. The Show Log link can be used to display extended output log information. The most important log messages, such as errors and warnings, are logged to the regular Message Log window.

Packaging Projects Windows

First step, prepare your levels, set up the game graphics to provide the highest standards possible:

Toolbar panel > Settings > Engine Scalability Settings > test all sorts of Qualities to provide the best graphics at the best FPS > after you have chosen the Quality Settings for your project, choose the quality level for your game materials, Toolbar panel > Settings > Material Quality Level. Next, open the level Blueprint, add an Event BeginPlay node, connect it with a string of Execute Console Command nodes for each Quality Setting. Here are the Commands for the Quality Settings

sg.ResolutionQuality - from 0 to 100, for example: an Execute Console Command node with sg.ResolutionQuality 70 - will provide a Resolution Quality Scale of 70% when the level starts

sg.ViewDistanceQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3, for example: an Execute Console Command node with sg.ViewDistanceQuality 2 - will provide a High View Distance Quality when the level starts

sg.AntiAliasingQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

sg.PostProcessQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

sg.ShadowQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

sg.TextureQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

sg.EffectsQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

sg.FoliageQuality - Low setting equating to 0 and Epic to 3

r.MaterialQualityLevel - Low setting equating to 0 and High to 2

Next, go to Toolbar panel > click the down arrow next to Build > Lighting Quality > choose Production, then click the Build button in the Toolbar panel. Do the same steps for every level in your game, first set the Quality, then Build the light for Production.

Before packaging, go to Edit > Project Settings > Project > Description > complete everything in the About section, the Publisher section, the Legal section and the Displayed section. Go to Edit > Project Settings > Project > Packaging > Project > Build Configuration > select Shipping, check the Full Rebuild box and the For Distribution box.

UE4 Project Settings Description

Go to Edit > Project Settings > Platforms > Windows > add Splash images and a Game Icon.

To start Packaging the Project go to File > Package Project > Windows > select for which Windows version you want to package your project, you have two choices the Windows 32 bit and Windows 64 bit. Now, you have a game ready to be distributed to the users, to add your game to Steam or to other stores, you need to further read and follow the steps provided by the store, most stores have a Software development kit (SDK) that you need to install if you want to upload your game.

Packaging Projects Android

To package projects for Android devices, follow the same steps from above, until you reach the step Edit > Project Settings > Platforms > Windows, instead of Windows pick Android, in this section you need to configure the project for the Android platform. First, Accept SDK License, then follow the configuration steps from below.

Important configuration steps: add an Android Package Name, a Store Version, a Version Display Name, Minimum SDK Version (recommended 21), Targeted SDK Version (recommended 26), Use ExternalFilesDir for UE4Game files? check the box to enable it, Enable FullScreen Immersive on KitKat and above devices check the box to enable it, under Build check the box for Support arm64 [aka arm64-v8a], add Icons and Launch Images, plus the most important step Generate A Keystore/Sign your Project for Release, if do not know how to sign your project for release, here is an article written by me on the subject How To Generate A Keystore (Sign Projects for Release) Unreal Engine 4

UE4 Project Settings Android

Important! Make sure to set the Store Version to the number one if this is the first time you are uploading the project to the store. Each time you re-cook your project to re-upload to the store, you will need to increase the Store Version number, if you do not do this, your new APK file will fail to be uploaded over the old one.

To start Packaging the Project go to File > Package Project > Android > select Android ETC1a texture format (supported by all Android based devices and supports alpha compression). Now, you have a game ready to be distributed to the users, to add your game to Google Play store or to other stores, you need to further read and follow the steps provided by the store.

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