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Feature Behavior for UE4

Several features of Visual Assist change behavior when support for Unreal Engine 4 (UE4) is enabled.

Open File in Solution

The number of entries in the Open File in Solution (Shift+Alt+O) dialog for a UE4 solution is typically large, especially when a solution includes UE4 engine source. You can exclude engine source, and other unwanted files, from the dialog using a persistent filter made visible via the context menu of the dialog.

Hide engine source by filtering its root directory, and hide generated header files by filtering a file ending.

Enhanced Syntax Coloring

By default, Visual Assist does not apply its enhanced syntax coloring within UE4 macro invocations, e.g. UCLASS, but only within invocations that occur on a single line.

UE4 specifiers on subsequent lines of multi-line invocations are colored as if they were user or system symbols.

Enable enhanced syntax coloring within single and multi-line invocations in the options dialog of Visual Assist.

With or without Visual Assist, Visual Studio applies coloring to UE4 specifiers that are also language keywords.

System Symbols in Italics

Visual Assist considers symbols that do not change, or that rarely change, to be system symbols. The symbols can be displayed in italics within the text editor, thereby differentiating references to them from symbols that have been overridden. System symbols are typically declared in shared system headers found via directory paths in project settings.

Visual Assist considers symbols declared in UE4 engine source, irrespective of where UE4 engine source is installed, to be system symbols. Therefore, enable italics to be confident you are referencing UE4 engine symbols when expected.

Enable italics in the options dialog of Visual Assist.

Smart Suggestions

Drop-downs with UE4 specifiers open when you type or modify select UE4 macros, e.g. UFUNCTION.

In the case of UE4 macros that accept meta specifiers, a separate drop-down appears after a meta keyword.

Enable the smart suggestions in the options dialog of Visual Assist.

Visual Assist obtains its suggested specifiers from several sources. Override the suggested set for a UE4 macro by creating an appropriately titled VA Snippet. For example, replace specifiers for UINTERFACE with a lowercase-only set by defining a VA Snippet titled UINTERFACE.

Default smart suggestions may be replaced by a VA Snippet with the appropriate title:


Values in a VA Snippet replace, not augment, default smart suggestions.


Visual Assist also suggests common UE_LOG parameters.

VA Snippets

Suggestions lists that appear when invoking UE4 macros do not include VA Snippets. For example, typing 'cl' suggests specifier 'classGroup', not a class declaration.

Enable suggestion of VA Snippets within UE4 macros in the options dialog of Visual Assist.


When you Rename declarations through the Quick Actions and Refactorings (VA) (Shift+Alt+Q) dialog, all of the related implementations are also renamed.

Change Signature

When you Change Signature of declarations through the Quick Actions and Refactorings (VA) (Shift+Alt+Q) dialog, all of the related implementations are also changed.

Unreal Smart Pointer Libraries


Visual Assist suggests the MakeShared function when assigning to a TSharedPtr Smart Pointer.


Visual Assist suggests the MakeUnique function when assigning to a TUniquePtr Smart Pointer.


Registry Settings

Value Name Meaning
FilterGeneratedSourceFiles Include generated Unreal Engine 4 (UE4) headers in GoTo destinations
WarnOnLoadOfPathWithReversedSlashes Reload file opened with a file path containing forward slashes