While working on a release of 100+ vector fields for the Unreal community marketplace I built a few handy tools to generate vector fields from curves, surfaces etc, and to blend them with constants, noise, various forces, other vector fields and so on.
For example, here is a vector field using a spherical surface and a “pull” force to create a forcefield effect:
While this vector field uses a series of curves mixed with flow noise for a “jet exhaust” effect:
In Unreal a single cascade emitter can use these vector fields and GPU sprites to create a very broad range of looks:
So to celebrate and promote the upcoming release on the Unreal marketplace I’ve generated 10 free vector fields in .fga format for download here. Enjoy!
It’s an understatement to say that Houdini volumes have a lot of depth, there are just so many possibilities and fun things to explore. After making a few requisite pyroclastic clouds I decided to see what can be done without DOPs. In other words, what kinds of effects can you get without simulation or just converting input geometry? Here’s the first part of an answer – you can use VOPs to create animated volumes and cloudscapes that are surprisingly fast. In these I first filled a volume with a sin wave and then introduced alligator and perlin noises at different frequencies following the sinusoidal surface.
Writing custom vector fields is pretty easy in VOPs. You can leverage the multiple noise functions Houdini offers, easily create vortices and whirling clouds, and with just a bit more effort bring in curves and use them as paths which the field can orbit around or follow along. Whip up an additive shader and you can get very nice results… or export the fields to use in Unreal or some other game engine. I plan on eventually offering a number of free static vector fields here on the site for game effects artists, but for now here are some basic test renders, cheers.