Particle Baker

by Alexander Podgayko in Scripts and Addons

Who and why needs this addon

The addon is intended to be used by artists who create animations for fbx export. It allows you to use particle systems created in Blender in Sketchfab, unity, unreal engine and any other engine that supports animated fbx. This comes out to be really handy when you don't know which engine will be used by let's say the company you are working for. I understand it's obviously better to use engine's particle system. If it has one and if you have access to it. Otherwise, the addon is for you! :-) 

What does the addon do?

For every particle it creates an object to represent a particle and then creates an animation for the object, exactly mimicking the path, rotation and scale of the particle.



Additional features

You may have noted that there's a curve called size over life. The name speaks for itself and you know what? That's the thing you couldn't easily do with a regular blender particle system, but now you can! Use one of the presets or build a curve yourself and see how particle size follows it! 


Tips

There's always a ton to improve an instrument, but often the easiest way to improve the end result is to make use of some really easy to follow tips I have prepared for you. 

1. Be careful with the number of particles and the number of triangles in an instance you're using. 

There's no instance or any other memory saving mechanisms available while exporting to fbx, so each particle will be just a separate object. So to calculate the total number of triangles your system will use, you have to multiply instance object triangle count by the total number of particles. _Do you think I should add the automatic calculation into the addon? You can drop me a note on the comments or on email.

  1. Create the particle systems you need
  2. Assign an instance object to each one of your particle systems
  3. Select all the emitter objects
  4. Press BAKE PARTICLES  in the addon tab

Now, all your emitters became hidden and all the resulting particles are selected, so you can easily group them or move to a different layer

I was thinking of additionally simplifying curves of resulting animations, but that's not needed, as they will be simplified on fbx export anyway

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