Particle Flocker 2.0 is a huge update to the Particle Flocker system and contains many new features and improvements which are described below.
New Flocker Node Attributes
Several new attributes have been added to the Particle Flocker node providing more ways to control the global simulation. The new attributes are:
- Simulation Accuracy
- Boid Separation Urge
- Flock Centring Urge
- Velocity Matching Urge
You can read about these in more detail on our Particle Flocker Attributes page.
Attribute Output Types
The output type of a Particle Flocker attribute can now be changed to 1 of 3 different types which provide a much wider range of movement and behaviour possibilities. The output types available are:
- Constant Value
- Random between 2 values
- Per particle expression
You can read more about this on our Attribute Output Types page.
New Volume Primitives
A set of new volume primitives have been introduced in Particle Flocker 2.0 which can be used to control which particles are affected by an entity. The new primitives are:
You can read more about this on our Volume Types page.
It is now possible to create volumes which wrap around a NURBS curve to form a continuous tube volume. This is handy if you want to create a corridor of varying width through which to channel particles.
You can read more about this on our Curve Volume page.
View Port Manipulators
All volumes can now be controlled both in the Particle Flocker window or directly in the view port using a context manipulator.
You can read more about this on our Manipulators page.
We’ve introduced a new entity; Modifiers. Modifiers allow you to create volumes within 3D space that will modify how particles behave when they come within their volume.
You can read more about modifiers and how to use them on our Modifiers page.
Obstacle entities can now use any of the base volume types. The avoidance algorithm has also been improved to produce better obstacle avoidance results. The volumes which can be used by obstacles are:
You can read more about this on our Obstacles page.
We’ve introduced a feature which allows you to make particles follow the surface of an obstacle using a steering type called Wall Following. You can read more about this on our Obstacle Wall Following page.
Particle Flocker 2.0 utilises vastly improved search algorithms which massively improve speed when simulating inside the view port
During our in-house test results we recorded increases of between 50% – 75%.
Improved Wander Behaviour
The Wander steering behaviour has been greatly improved, providing better controls and options to enable artists to achieve better visual results.
The previous implementation of the Wander steering behaviour was difficult to control, and was generally quite confusing to use. In Particle Flocker 2.0 we’ve fully revamped the Wander target type to make the process of setting up this behaviour much easier and more controllable.
Improvements include the following:
- Wander mode options
- Point Attraction
- Better attribute naming
You can read more about this on our Target Types page.
Improved Look and Feel
The Particle Flocker Window has been updated to improve the overall look and feel.
- Dynamic UI adjusts to the current state of the scene
- UI sections are divided up into coloured sections
- UI colours can be linked to entity colours
- All attributes have tool tips to provide information directly within the UI
Further extensive information can be found in our Particle Flocker Window documentation.
New Workflow Utilities
We’ve added a few workflow utilities to assist with the setup of scenes when working with Particle Flocker. These include:
- Create Particles Utility
- Assign To Selected shortcut
You can read more about these on our Utilities page.
New Outliner Icons
All Particle Flocker nodes now have new custom outliner icons
Full support for Viewport 2.0
Particle Flocker 2.0 fully supports Viewport 2.0…seemed to make sense really! 🙂