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Grouping Actors

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In the Unreal Engine, you can group Actors together, which allows you to easily manage multiple Actors simultaneously. Grouped Actors can be transformed as a single unit through rotation, translation, and scaling. Groups can be unlocked to temporarily allow manipulation of individual Actors, and then locked again to freeze the Actors inside the group to prevent changes to an individual Actor's transforms. You can add Actors to, or remove them from, a group. You can also nest groups by having one group as a member of another group.

An Actor can only belong to one group at a time, unless that group itself is nested inside a larger group.

Grouping Actors

To group Actors together:

  • Select the Actors.

  • Right-click one of the selected Actors to bring up the context menu.

  • Click Group. Alternatively, press the Ctrl+G keyboard shortcut.

    Group Menu Option

If you do not see the Group option on the context menu, make sure that Allow Group Selection is selected on the Settings menu. You can access the Settings menu from the toolbar at the top of the Unreal Editor.

LE_ViewMenuGroup.png

When you group Actors together, you create a Group Actor in the World Outliner. To select all Actors in that group, you can select either the Group Actor or any member of the group.

Group Actor

For more information about Actor selection, see Selecting Actors .

Options for Grouping

Options related to groups can be found in the context menu available by Right-clicking on a selection of Actors (minimum of 2) in the Viewport or in the World Outliner.

Which options you see on the context menu depends on what you have selected:

  • Objects in a group.

  • Objects not in a group.

  • A combination of objects in a group and objects not in a group.

  • Objects in a group that is unlocked.

Hotkeys

Hotkey

Command

Ctrl+G

Group /Regroup

Shift+G

Ungroup

Ctrl+Shift+G

Toggle group mode

Group

The Group option is used to create a new group from selected Actors. If none of the selected Actors are already in a group, only Group will be available. Choose Group to group the selected Actors.

Grouping is non-destructive in that it never destroys existing selected groups. Any number of Actors or groups can be included in a selection when creating a group. For example, if two Lights and an existing locked group of two Static Meshes are selected and then grouped, a new group will be created with the two Lights and the sub-group of Static Meshes under it. If any selected Actors are in unlocked groups, they will be removed from their old group and placed in the new one.

Once a group is formed, green brackets appear around it, and its pivot point is automatically set to the center point of the group.

Group Brackets and Pivot

Regroup

When a selection contains at least one group and other ungrouped Actors, the Regroup option becomes available. Regroup removes any existing groups from any selected Actors, and creates a new group from all selected Actors. This can be used to quickly create a new group out of a selection without worrying about nesting groups.

Ctrl+G can be used in place of the context menu to regroup. If no groups are among the selected Actors, pressing Ctrl+G will create a new group out of the selected Actors. If groups are selected, it will perform a regroup.

Ungroup

The Ungroup option removes all Actors from the selected groups and deletes the groups.

  • If a group contains nested groups, the nested groups will be removed from their parent group but not be disbanded themselves.

  • For groups that are unlocked, the ungroup operation will remove the selected Actors from the group without attempting to keep them within any existing hierarchy.

    LE_Ungroup.png

Lock and Unlock Group

The Lock and Unlock options are available when you are working with an existing group. A group's default state is locked. The state of a group affects other potential actions that can be performed with groups. For example, individual Actors can only be removed from an unlocked group.

  • When you select any Actors in a locked group, the entire group will be selected. Any transformations will affect each object in the group. If a group is unlocked, Actors in the group will be selected and transformed individually.

  • A group's state is visible based on the color of the brackets surrounding the group. Green brackets designate a locked group, and red brackets are used for unlocked groups.

    Unlocked Group

Remove from Group

The Remove from Group option is only available when selecting Actors in an unlocked group. This option will remove the selected Actors from the group. If a nested group is removed from a larger group, it still remains a group itself. Once a group contains no Actors or other groups, it is automatically deleted, and its GroupActor is removed from the World Outliner.

Add Actors to Group

The Add Actors to Group option is only available when one group is selected and other ungrouped Actors are also selected. This option adds the ungrouped Actors to the existing group.

Notes

  • Groups can be globally disabled (or re-enabled) in the Editor for selection purposes by selecting Allow Group Selection from the Settings menu in the toolbar.

  • On creation of a new group, pivot points are automatically centered. Group pivot points will set any Editor widgets when the group is locked. When a group is unlocked, the pivot points of its Actors will function as normal.

  • Group pivots can be set by selecting the desired group and then holding down Alt and clicking the Middle Mouse Button in the viewport for the pivot location.

  • It is not possible to group Actors that are in different levels. Moving an Actor that is currently in a group from one level to another will remove it from the existing group. However, entire groups can be moved across levels.