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Exporting Instancer/Particle Systems

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Dan Guilliams
Exporting Instancer/Particle Systems
on Sep 16, 2009 at 7:39:06 pm


I'm working on writing an exporter from Maya to a game engine, and I'm having some trouble getting the information I need from Instancers. I'll try and give as much detail as I can here.

The exporter is in C++, so I'm relying heavily on Maya's API. ( Here is a link to it.)

Here's what I'm trying to do: Instancers can be used to render out particles as polygons (that's our plan, anyways), and they reference a polygon node. The connection between the instancer, it's related particle system, and the polygon it references are clearly visible in the hypergraph (see here).

When exporting, I'm not having any trouble getting to the node that contains the Instancer, and I'm not having trouble creating an instance of MFnInstancer, but I cannot, for the life of me, get to the node containing the polygon that the instancer uses.

Here's what I've tried so far:

The instancesForParticle and the allInstances methods of MFnInstancer return nothing. More specifically, the MDagPath arrays I'm passing in to the methods are returning empty. This is the case whether particles are present or not.

The getConnections method returns some plugs, but none of them are connected to the polygon.

These are the two strategies I've used for everything else I've done with the exporter, and I've been able to get everything to work. Does anyone know what I might be doing wrong? Please, feel free to ask any questions if you want, I'll give you as much information as I can!

Thanks in advance.

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