Unreal 4.26 Bridge

lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
So I guess we can start a poll on how long it will take before a new bridge is released to support Unreal 4.26...not to mention Unreal 5 which is supposed to land next year some time?

So important safety tip...keep UE 4.25, import from LW there then load the project into 4.26...works, but a little cumbersome if you want to add more LW assets into the project later.
 

TheLexx

Active member
If LightWave was more popular they could maybe have done this in cooperation with Epic, in order to have a native implementation in UE directly like other applications have.

Do the other applications with native implementation offer better functions than LW, eg character animation ? :)
 

lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
Open source it, or at least keep on top of it..Im sure the difference between 4.25 and 4.26 isnt so far that a recompile may be all thats needed.
 

lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
Loading LWO/LWs directly would be great thing. Possibly something someone with mad coding skills could write a plugin for.
 

gdkeast

Member
It would be nice / make sense if NT/Vizrt would make the bridges freely available and open. The bridge is only good if you own LW, so it wouldn't hurt anything and no one would have to wait for the next release just to get the updated bridge. Across the versions of the 2019 LW release, it has Unreal bridges from 4.19 to 4.23. Definitely a moving target that would be nice to stay current with. (and a selling point)
 

lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
They have at least one time released a bridge update seperate from a LW release, so maybe someone is working on it...but yeah, making it open would allow other folks to possibly improve on it.
 

raymondtrace

Founding member
In another discussion topic on these forums or on Facebook, it was realized that the Unreal plugin is already open source. Look in its folder on your system for an aptly named "Source" folder. It looks like it needs a C++ compiler (and somebody that knows what they're doing...count me out). There may not be much to tweak as LW seems to be passing FBX data.

EDIT: A diff comparison on the source folders for 4.23, 4.24, and 4.25 shows that they are identical. Somebody just needs to compile this against the 4.26 engine using the UnrealBuildTool. It's probably a 5 minute task.

 
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JamesCurtis

Active member
I hope somebody can come forth to do it! I know diddly squat about C++ exceppt that it was my average grade in High School!
 

jwiede

Electron wrangler
If I have time this weekend, I'll update to UE4.26 and see what's doable. No promises, but if build process is straightforward I'll give it a try for Win & Mac x64. As I have LW2019 not LW2020, I'll compile against the LW2019 LWSDK. If someone else intends to get to it first, please let me know.

[update] Whoever said there was source available didn't look very closely, what's there appears to be missing significant portions. I'm waiting for 4.26.2 to finish installing, and I'll see what happens combining the provided C# (not C++, btw) build file with UE components from 4.26.2. I can probably figure a few out, but there appears a high probability there are missing components from LW side blocking rebuild. Will update further once I get a better sense of what's involved. I'll probably install 4.23.x as well to get a better notion of how a properly-built bridge binary looks internally, and functions, but I'm not into spending all weekend on an ultimately-unlikely RE spelunking effort.
 
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raymondtrace

Founding member
If I have time this weekend, I'll update to UE4.26 and see what's doable. No promises, but if build process is straightforward I'll give it a try for Win & Mac x64. As I have LW2019 not LW2020, I'll compile against the LW2019 LWSDK. If someone else intends to get to it first, please let me know.
I don't know if LWSDK is involved (but again, I'm mostly clueless). It sounds like the build tool is exclusively UE. When I search the contents of these files, there's no reference to anything "lwsdk". What's being built is for use in UE.

I would imagine that there is something on the LW side that needs to be maintained as well. However, you can see in your account on lightwave3d.com that they issued an Unreal Bridge 4.24-4.25 Plugin Update outside of any LW update. So whatever component is running within LW may be stable between these UE updates.

My previous comparison between 4.23, 4.24, and 4.25 (where everything was identical) was for LW2020. However, I just ran a test and found a few differences in the sources between LW2019 vs LW2020. I was hoping to take a stab at this as well. If I find time to poke at this, I'll post here.
 

raymondtrace

Founding member
Here's as far as I got. I tried to rebuild the 4.25 bridge as a test before building the 4.26 bridge.

Based on the links I posted earlier...With VisualStudio installed in the background (no need to be open), run cmd:
"C:\Program Files\Epic Games\UE_4.25\Engine\Build\BatchFiles\RunUAT.bat" BuildPlugin -Rocket -Plugin="C:\Program Files\LightWave2020\support\3rdparty_support\UnrealEngine\4.25\LightWaveBridge\lightwavebridge.uplugin" -TargetPlatforms=Win64 -Package=C:\LWBridgeTestOutput

The only error I got was in regard to a missing library (Google's protobuf). I have no idea what path is trying to be referenced here. I grabbed everything protobuffy from github ( https://github.com/protocolbuffers/protobuf/releases/tag/v3.7.1 ) but I cannot find any file named "protobuf.lib".

Any suggestions?

1618691902842.png




Protobuf was introduced for LW2020. So I tried again against LW2019. But then I got this error:

ProcessResult.StdOut: [1/5] Default.rc2
ProcessResult.StdOut: [2/5] SharedPCH.UnrealEd.ShadowErrors.NoUndef.cpp
ProcessResult.StdOut: [3/5] UE4Editor-LightWaveBridge.lib
ProcessResult.StdOut: Creating library C:\LWBridge2019Output\HostProject\Plugins\lightwavebridge\Intermediate\Build\Win64\UE4Editor\Development\LightWaveBridge\UE4Editor-LightWaveBridge.lib and object C:\LWBridge2019Output\HostProject\Plugins\lightwavebridge\Intermediate\Build\Win64\UE4Editor\Development\LightWaveBridge\UE4Editor-LightWaveBridge.exp
ProcessResult.StdOut: [4/5] UE4Editor-LightWaveBridge.dll
ProcessResult.StdOut: LINK : error LNK2001: unresolved external symbol IMPLEMENT_MODULE_LightWaveBridge
ProcessResult.StdOut: C:\LWBridge2019Output\HostProject\Plugins\lightwavebridge\Binaries\Win64\UE4Editor-LightWaveBridge.dll : fatal error LNK1120: 1 unresolved externals
CommandUtils.Run: Took 156.7604698s to run UnrealBuildTool.exe, ExitCode=6
 
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