Unreal separates settings into two parts: Project Settings and Editor Preferences. Project Settings are shared between everyone working on the project, and Editor Preferences are per-machine.
Editor Settings have a lot of less-known useful settings, even after 4 years of working with Unreal I'm still discovering new things that help my workflow!
Thanks to everyone on Twitter that suggested stuff!
Enable Live Coding
General > Live Coding > General > Enable Live Coding
This might be obvious for some but a lot of new programmers coming to Unreal don't know about it. It's possible to recompile while keeping the editor running by using Live Coding. Trust me, it's amazingly useful.
Always Open In Tabs, Not Windows
General > Appearance > User Interface > Asset Editor Open Location
Unreal's default behaviour when the user opens an asset is to sometimes open it in a docked tab, sometimes to open it in a separate window. There's some logic to it but it's beyond mortal comprehension.
I am not very smart, so I prefer to make sure all new assets are opened as new tabs in the main window.
To enable this, change
General > Appearance > User Interface > Asset Editor Open Location to
Open Last Level on Startup
General > Loading & Saving > Startup > Load Level at Startup
By default, Unreal will open up the "Editor Startup Map" set in Project Settings. Those settings are shared between everyone on the project, so it's rare that this gets changed during the project.
I find it useful to change "Load Level at Startup" to
Last Opened so when I restart the editor over and over it re-loads the level I was working on.
Stop Escape from Closing Play In Editor
General > Keyboard Shortcuts > Play World > Stop
Pressing the Escape key stops the current play-in-editor session, but this can be frustrating because Escape is often used to open pause menus in games.
I like to rebind stop simulation to to
Add Properties to Favorites
This isn't an editor setting as far as I can tell, but there is a kind of hidden feature in that you can right-click properites and add them to a list of favorites.
Disable All Tutorials
General > Tutorials > Disable All Tutorial Alerts
The tutorial notification in the top-right is great at first, but its flashing can get annoying if you re-install Unreal and don't need it anymore.
Blueprint Save On Compile
Content Editors > Blueprint Editor > Compiler > Save on Compile
This is pretty self-explanatory, instead of having to hit two buttons, hit one!
Blueprint Default Pure Casts
Content Editors > Blueprint Editor > Experimental > Default to Using Pure Cast Nodes
In Blueprints it's possible to cast in a Pure way or an "Impure" way. The pure way produces a node with no Execution pin, similar to a function marked
BlueprintPure. Impure is the standard way that has an execution node.
It's possible to convert between the two by right-clicking on the node and choosing
Blueprint Auto Cast Object Connections
Content Editors > Blueprint Editor > Workflow > Auto Cast Object Connections
When enabled, dragging between two unrelated pins will automatically create a cast node between them.
Break on Blueprint Exceptions
EDIT: I no longer recommend this. It gives false positives, breaking even in valid situations. For example when building a network game, the Blueprint would break on setting a parameter for a particle system as if it was null when it was valid.
General > Experimental > Blueprints > Blueprint Break on Exceptions
By default Blueprint will print Error messages to the log when trying to access
nullptr pointers. This setting changes that to stop the game and open up the offending blueprint on these kinds of errors.