Adding Particle Effects

The particle system and the effects it create are quite cool. It is a great system that can be used to create a wide range of interesting, visually pleasing and functional effects from weather systems to surreal or unearthly effects. I have been experimenting with the system in each of my games I have made, each time finding out more and also realising how much more there is.
For Lifuggler I wanted to make clouds appear and float across the sky in the background. Having used the system before I knew how to change the particle sizes, amount, shapes, velocity and colours but I was not to sure how to make actual shapes. Consequently for my first attempt my clouds looked like perfect spheres reflecting the clouds but not actually cloud-like.
Which sure, it looks interesting but it wasn’t what I wanted. So I investigated and experimented with the different settings and inputs when I discovered this section…
In the Renderer section after clicking and expanding next to Renderer Mode I changed the option to Mesh, which then gave me two more options. Now this was a bit of an eureka moment.

The two new options enabled me to apply a mesh to the particle shape. I clicked on the options circle and was presented with multiple shape meshes that were taken from any objects that I had created for the game.

So I went to Blender and created a couple of cloud like shaped objects. I say cloud like, and use the term lightly as some of the clouds I created were distinctly dog poop look a likes. But ah well! It was my first try, and although my clouds ended up rather amateurish or none cloud like at times, they still looked the part enough to just fulfill my desired look for the game. Anyways, after creating a few cloud objects/assets I then imported them into Unity and was able to select them from the list available. I was also able to add extra shapes, which enabled some sort of randomness with cloud shapes and sizes.

Although I was somewhat happy with the clouds I still wasn’t entirely satisfied as I didn’t consider them wispy or cotton wooly enough. I struggled to find a solution until looking at another students game (Thank you Matt) who had a fog effect which not only looked absolutely cool but was near enough to fit my design criteria as well as time constraints.
Through the Asset Store I imported Lazy Fog by Lemon Spawn and after playing with the settings and inputs I came up with……
It didn’t totally satisfy the original vision I had for the clouds but as I mentioned before due to time constraints, it had to do.
My advice, if I may be so bold as to give some, would be do not hesitate to experiment and get into the system. As long as you remember to save along the way and under different file names, you can always do a complete revert to an older version. I learnt through this project a few things through experimentation which not only included finding out that you could actually add more than one particle system to a scene (sounds so obvious now, and will go down as one of those doh! moments in my life) but also finding out I could add more than one collider to an object or asset. Now I am not sure if this is the correct way to go about things, but as there were issues with the mesh colliders, applying smaller but multiple colliders seemed to have worked nicely in my game.
Well that is it for this one, thank you for your time and patronage, I sincerely hope you got something out of it. Until next time….

God’s peace and blessings upon you.


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