Making a Procedural Building in Houdini & UE4

Vitor Maccari talked about making a procedural building in Houdini and how to integrate it into Unreal Engine.

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Hi everyone, I am a 3D Artist from Brazil. I work as a 3D Generalist/Video Editor. I have a part-time job at a Digital Studio and also have other projects as a freelancer. In my spare time, I like to study, watch movies, play some games. I’ve been working on some 3D productions like The Wrong Rock which has been listed in the Oscar 2021 Best Animated Short Film: The List Of 96 Qualified Films.

I also had the pleasure to work with Pedro Conti, one of my favorite 3D Artists in the "Official Video of Ron Artis II in his single In My Heart. I have just finished a version of my Wind Waker animation with a credits screen and a new soundtrack made by the Colombian composer, Andrés Cárdenas. I’m currently working on some freelance jobs and open to new job opportunities.

Educational Background

Around 2004 a friend of mine introduced me to 3ds Max, I was 20, then. At the time, I lived in the countryside and I would work with my father at a chicken breeding farm. A few months later I got a computer, but since I didn’t have internet access in the countryside, I started to learn 3ds Max with some tips from my friend and with the Offline Help Guide (it is online now), where I acquired most of the knowledge in the subject. I also have learned Maya, Photoshop, a little of Motion Builder, and Premiere around the same time with this “offline” method. I’ve always been into games, mainly Zelda, Mario, RPGs like Final Fantasy, Xenogears, and they helped me with the English language. Three years later, in 2007 I started my first job in a nearby city as a 3D Generalist in an advertising agency. Some years later, I graduated with a bachelor's degree in Visual Arts.

I really like to watch some videos online, take courses, and do my studies. I like to use my personal projects to try new techniques, improve my skills and create artistic experiments. 

Learning Houdini

I started to learn Houdini about 2 years ago. I began making clouds, fracturing, etc. I am enjoying the Non-Destructive workflow, it was a totally new approach for me, it motivated me to start learning again. Once you get the hang, it’s hard to go back to traditional poly modeling.

I learned a lot on the Houdini website, I really recommend it to anyone who wants to start using Houdini. The website has lots of free learning resources, all organized by level. You can find the most advanced tutorials like explosions, liquids simulations that might be appealing, but try to stick with the most basic ones before moving into the more complex subjects. And a final piece of advice that I can give is to have fun.

Houdini+UE4 Procedural Building

This experiment is a mix of some courses and ideas. I am using it to study integration with the Unreal Engine. The whole digital asset was created using a Curve node. 

1. Base Curve Shape

2. Floors

3. Walls

4. Columns

5. Windows

6. Other Assets Together

Each node group controls one part of the structure that was created from the main curve.

The main curve controls the shape of the building. This is another example:

Integration with Unreal Engine

I used the Houdini plugin inside Unreal, which is awesome. To use it, we have to create a digital asset inside Houdini first. To work correctly, I recommend visiting the Unreal and Houdini documentation. We can access the same settings that we have configured on Houdini inside Unreal.

Panels comparison:


For me, the biggest challenge is how to handle procedural modeling for organic models that utilize much poly editing, sculpting, etc. I intend to explore more about the other integrations between Unreal Engine and Houdini. The next project is to create a cinematic of my Wind Waker Fan art using Unreal Engine and utilizing the assets that I made for the short.

Thank you for the interest in my work.

Vitor Maccari, 3D Generalist

Interview conducted by Ellie Harisova

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Comments 1

  • Almeida Rafael

    Cara, que incrível Victor! Eu estou querendo entrar neste universo procedural do houdini + unreal. Já mecho no Unreal à um tempo mas o Houdini vai ser difícil rsrs! Estou construindo um cenário na Unreal e eu gostaria de aplicar essa ferramenta procedural, queria fazer uma espécie de passarela de madeira com variação do tipo de madeiras e tapumes. Para o corrimão eu também queria aplicar estes mesmos tipo de variações e também uma variação de inclinação. É difícil? Poderia me dizer o que estudar para chegar a isso? xD
    Parabéns pelo projeto pessoal, muito bonito!


    Almeida Rafael

    ·2 years ago·

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