View Full Version : particle FX water/steam 101

03-08-2006, 05:37 AM
Hi guys,

I jumped into a new area in LW, particle FX and I just can't get it. :confused:

I have a toon character that has two large water bottles for a jet pack, I need to have water droplets or steam coming out of the nozzles.

I need it to be simple...a constant stream of particles throughout the animation without wind, gravity or time affecting them. Also, it would be cool if the particle stream is a constant length, say 2 metres from the nozzles before dying.

Any hints?

Many thanks,


03-08-2006, 06:20 AM
Simple. Use Velocity and particle rate to get the size/thickness of flow you want, then choose the particle lifetime to suit the length of flow you want.

03-08-2006, 06:30 AM
Yeah, got a good hint: read the manual. 8)

- Create a Null Object
- Set is as child of your jet pack and position it there where you want it to be
- Go to the Dynamic Tab of its properties and add an emitter
- In the emitter you want to play with particle age and velocity. Hit play in Layout and play with the values. As long as you've got only few particles (say 100 per second) it's pretty interactive.
- If you like your particle animation then activate Hypervoxels and try sprites first. Use gradients on particle age to dissolve the sprites into nothing at the desired area

Last (and first) hint: Read the manual.

03-08-2006, 10:23 AM
In addition to or in place of a velocity, a trick i sometimes use is a negative % for parent motion. Basically, the faster your emitter goes in a direction, the faster the particles will shoot out the back! This way you don't have to adjust the velocity to account for increases and decreases in speed.

03-09-2006, 12:12 AM
Thanks guys,

I did read the manual...well bits and pieces of it, I even played with the examples on the LW 7 cd before posting but that even didn't help :D

For one thing, you can add an emitter several ways, very confusing if you ask me :D

1/ add a null and in the object properties/Geometry tab, add custom object/FX Emitter.

2/ Add button/PFX/add particle emitter etc

And there's probably a few more ways to do it on top of that :D

But the biggest problem turned out to be and one no one told me, that you needed to activate the emitter before it would render.

Ahh...the HyperVoxels button, now I can actually see the particles.


Many thanks for the help, it got me there in the end.