Zillion of usability issues in editor addressed – default tool more obvious, no hierarchy reloading, group editing better

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3D model composition in CGE editor, using https://sketchfab.com/3d-models/gears-of-war-grinder-ec7c470ba3db4dcb95a7212af3e3844d

OK, not really a zillion πŸ™‚ But I seriously addressed a few important issues with editor usability and I think these improvements have a big impact. Some important things are now more intuitive for beginners, some behave better for larger projects.

As usual, I encourage you to try the improvements immediately by downloading the latest engine version. And please support us on Patreon because we really rely on it.


  1. The default editor tool now allows to select and modify both UI (instances of TCastleUserInterface) and 3D / 2D game stfuf (instances of TCastleTransform).

    In a broader context, the tools to operate on UI and transformations have been merged. There’s no longer a special “Modify UI” tool (that didn’t work on transforms). The tools “Translate” / “Rotate” / “Scale” remain, but now they work on both transforms (allowing to translate / rotate / scale them) or UI (in which case you can always translate + resize it).

    This makes using editor much simpler. You will no longer need to switch modes so often.

    Note: To operate on something (UI or transform) without changing the currently selected object, remember you can drag with Shift.

  2. Hierarchy (left panel) is updated smarter, without rebuilding it from scratch. This makes adding / removing components experience much better: it will not reset the expanded / collapsed state of your components, it will not reset the scroll position within the hierarchy list.

  3. We now show a label alongside selected UI components of size zero, to make them actually visible in the editor.

    This addresses a common situation with TCastleVerticalGroup and TCastleHorizontalGroup — they have by default size zero (since they have no children initially, and have AutoSize = true by default). While the zero size makes sense for them, but to the user it was confusing what is going on — you added a group, but nothing was visible?

    Now, newly added TCastleVerticalGroup and TCastleHorizontalGroup, while it still has size zero, is clearly visible.

    This also fixes analogous issue with TCastleImageControl, that has size zero by default, because URL of the image is not set initially, and Stretch = false (so control size matches image size, and there’s no image).

  4. If you cannot resize or move a component, sometimes it makes sense to move or resize the parent. This in particular applies to moving/resizing a UI with TCastleUserInterface.FullSize or moving a UI under TCastleVerticalGroup / TCastleHorizontalGroup. Previously these operations were blocked, now they affect the parent.

  5. If you cannot resize a component because it has property like TCastleButton.AutoSize, now we display this using a tooltip (when you try to resize it). So it should be more obvious that you can turn off properties like TCastleButton.AutoSize on many components to make them resizeable.

  6. Important API cleanup: We now have TCastleUserInterface.Translation property, consistent with TCastleTransform.Translation.

    The previous TCastleUserInterface.AnchorDelta is a deprecated alias for Translation. The HorizontalAnchorDelta, VerticalAnchorDelta, Left, Bottom are deprecated.

    This change is fully backward-compatible. We deprecate some things, but they all continue to work as before.

Screenshot for this news post continues our tradition — “if you don’t have a perfect screenshot to illustrate your features, just find a pretty model on Sketchfab and show it rendered using CGE” πŸ™‚ In this case, I searched for “smooth” and found this beautiful monster: Gears of War – Grinder by nataliedesign.

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