thinkingParticles 5 Released
BTRope -- This Node is the first soft-body physics object developed for thinkingParticles. The Node is used to create an actual rope mesh in a fully procedural way that mimics the actual physical behavior of a rope or cable. It is based on two points in space where a spline is drawn between those points. Rope physics simulations are based on a soft body solver, so it can stretch and spring back.
BTRopeData -- This Node is a matching thinkingParticles operator used to access or modify the underlying data of any Rope object in the scene. It allows a fully procedural access to the Rope properties at any time in a simulation.
BTJoint -- BTJoint is used to procedurally create joints between particles. The new Bullet Physics Engine in thinkingParticles comes with a rich set of joint types covering nearly every imaginable real world or out of this world scenario. Not to mention: all of this can be done and controlled at any time, in a variety of procedural ways.
BTJointCounter -- Iterating through an existing set of joints is essential for the fine control of dynamic effects the user usually expects of such a system. By implementing the BTJointCounter node, the artist's desire for controlling physics-based joints is more than fulfilled.
BTJointData -- BTJointData is a powerful Node that can be used to either get information about a joint or set it. This operator is used to set a joint's ability to break as well as its breaking velocity and rotation thresholds. It can also set the ability to define or redefine joint types and particle To/From connections and track when a joint is broken.
With Powerful Physics comes Great Responsibility
The newly introduced BulletPhysics engine in thinkingParticles delivers a more unified and powerful dynamics simulation system than ever before. To achieve such a dramatic improvement in physics simulation, many internal core functions had to be rewritten.
Handling of physics properties is now done in a fully dynamic way -- adding only little overhead on those objects/particles when needed. In fact, if there is no specific Bullet Physics effect in a setup - properties will not exist at all in memory or throughout the whole simulation.
Rich set of new thinkingParticles 5 Tools
EggTimer -- thinkingParticles offers advanced Non Linear Animation features (NLA) allowing control time-based effects in a completely different approach from how it is usually done in 3ds Max.
The EggTimer helper Node behaves exactly like an alarm clock and a timer combined - it runs for a certain (pre-set) amount of time and then stops and flags a signal. This can be used in a variety of ways to control other connected Nodes.