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Alex Pomorski
collision activates field?
on Aug 1, 2012 at 7:41:53 pm

Hello, I am new to 3D modeling/animation. here is a pic of what I'm working on:

What my goal is is to have an invisible cylinder rolling through, smashing through the center of the city. I will then vector render and composite it into flash, where a giant character is to be rolling through the city.

Since the aim is to be cartoonish, I don't necessarily want a DMM or Pulldownit-style realistic destruction. For this reason, what I'm thinking is using Maya's simple built-in shatter on the buildings, breaking each into 3 or 4 rigid body pieces. Then, once the cylinder active rigid body collides with a building, I would like to activate a gravity field for the building pieces so that they fall with physics. In other words, on collision I want to activate a field. This seems like something easy enough to make an expression for, but as I said I am new to 3D animation. So, what would be the easiest way to achieve the desired effect?


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Steve Sayer
Re: collision activates field?
on Aug 2, 2012 at 7:15:54 pm

It's not easily possible to activate a field for different objects at different times as you describe. You could script the rigid bodies to toggle between active and passive, but that may not be terribly easy or successful.

You may find you make more headway if you convert your shattered city to a cloth object, turn on Use Polygon Shells, then use some nConstraints to keep the pieces in place until the cylinder breaks them.

Good luck!


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Alex Pomorski
Re: collision activates field?
on Aug 3, 2012 at 12:17:19 am

Interesting! I've looked into it a bit, found a few tutorials but I'm afraid it may be over my head. Could you direct me in the direction of an easy to follow tutorial of how to do this? Perhaps I'll just have to bite the bullet and use something like Pulldownit. Thanks for your input!


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keith mcgregor
Re: collision activates field?
on Aug 8, 2012 at 8:23:51 pm

You're kinda already over your head, this doesn't look simple at all. If you use the dynamics in Maya try it on a small scale first. Try the old bowling ball tutorial found in some maya books and apply the shatter to the pins (one at a time mind you) study it and see what works and what doesn't. You will then have to learn about the constraints and could then try keying the constraint on and off (if even possible), or key the gravity on or off. You could also look at this as a couple of different sections in case the simulation for the full city is too much (that's gonna be quite a few polys to calculate in a sim, so be patient).
Another way could be to have certain sections set up with different gravities on them and animate the gravity on for each group right after the previous.
Looks like fun though! Sorry to not be of more help.
Happy destruction.
-Keith

Reality? What did you make it?


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Alex Pomorski
Re: collision activates field?
on Aug 8, 2012 at 9:13:10 pm

Thanks for your input Keith. I am sort of diving in head-first here, but I'm pretty sure I can pull it off! I like the advice about splitting off the city into different sections - it will most likely take a long time to render if I do traditional rigid bodies and Maya has to check every object on every frame to see if they're colliding (or calculate gravity for everything at once). I think what I may try first is using Pulldownit, since it seems to render extremely fast, but I'll probably return to this thread if I run into any difficulties!


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