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    So I'm trying to figure out what the best aproach to building levels in UDK is,
    I am building a harbor map and basically what I think I should do is the following:

    - Build the basic map layout within UDK using the ADD/SUBTRACT brushes.
    - Make models/props inside my 3d app to fill it up.
    - Make materials and textures to aply to the Geometry that was made inside UDK.
    - Setup the lighting and postprocessing etc..

    What I am wondering tho is how far can you go with the ADD/Subtract tool, can
    I build my roads and buildings with it or should I just have a plane and build the roads/buildings inside my 3d app?

    Thanks in advance,

    Epic's example maps which are included with the UDK give a good guide to how they split level geometry between BSP and Static Meshes. Load up one of these maps and press W to hide static meshes, or Q to hide BSP brushes. You'll see that some maps have hardly any BSP left, with almost all structures being static meshes.

    To an extent though it's kind of up to you - what do you feel happiest doing, and what looks best at the end? My advice would be to prototype with BSP and then populate with static meshes, removing brushes as you no longer need them.


      My personal preference is to create some simplistic meshes which can fit together in many different configurations, using brushes as temporary walls, ceiling and floors until you create something for that specific purpose. Having some set pieces like this can help to define a theme and ensure consistency, but still be open-ended enough to easily alter the layout to your liking. Once you've settled on a general layout you can go back and replace your meshes with more specific, more detailed ones.


        First is basic idea, second design map on paper. After is important if you do single or multiplayer map. Single is more about atmosphere, multi about meshes placement to support gameplay.
        Every pipeline you have to iterate and polish, so pipeline so important, do play tests ASAP.