What's New in X-Particles

Early Access update July 2018

The next Early Access update to X-Particles contains the following new features.

You can see these new features on a page where you see this image:

Early Access update May 2018

The following new features have been added to the latest version of of X-Particles.

You can see these new features on a page where you see this image:

Please note that if you are using the current release version and have not installed the beta update you will not see these new features, and the interface may be different in some objects.

New in X-Particles 4

This is a list of new features which have been added to X-Particles since XP3.5. Please refer to the individual pages for details.

New objects in X-Particles 4

New Dynamics Objects

Cloth FX

Explosia FX

Flow Field Object

Fluid FX

New Generators

OpenVDB Mesher

Planar Mesher

New Modifiers

Custom Data Modifier

History Modifier

MultiLevel Spawn Modifier

Sound Displacement Modifier

SplineFlow Modifier

Strange Attractor Modifier

Trails Modifier

New Tags

Cloth FX Tag

Cloth FX Pin Tag

Explosia FX Collider Tag

Explosia FX Source Tag

Fluid FX Object Tag

Newtonian Gravity Tag

Other New Objects

Cellular Automata Object

Circle Packer Object

Data Export Object

Data Import Object

Distance Shader

Object Shader

Shader Falloff

VertexMap Maker Object

X-Particles Console

Deleted or deprecated objects in X-Particles 4

The Sound Tag was deprecated in X-Particles 3.5 and has been removed in this version. The Sound Modifier should be used instead.

The Rewind modifier is still available but the new History modifier is easier to use and gives better results.

The Weight modifier is also available but the use of data mapping is recommended instead.

User interface changes

Quicktabs

The various objects in X-Particles use a lot of screen space. In this version we have attempted to reduce that by converting objects to use what MAXON call the 'QuickTabs' style. The differences can be seen in the Physical modifier, for example:

Old version:

New version:

You can see how the various sections have been moved to subordinate tabs - the active one ('General' in this image) is highlighted. This takes up much less screen space at the expense of requiring an extra mouse click to see the required parameters. The functionality of each object is unaffected by these changes.

In the latest version of X-Particles 4, you can select more than one tab at the same time by Shift-clicking the tab. All the controls associated with each quicktab will then be shown together.To deselect a selected quicktab, Control-click the tab.

Disable/Enable Questions and Actions

In the Questions tab in the emitter, and in any Actions list in any X-Particles object, it is now possible to disable or enable specific questions or actions. The emitter Questions tab would look like this:

In Actions lists, you would see this:

As you can see, in each case click the green tick to disable a question or action (which then shows a red cross) and click the red cross re-enable the question or action.

Other features

Custom data

Each particle always carries a set of data values (e.g. speed, radius, mass, etc.) but with this feature in X-Particles 4 it is possible to add your own custom data. How this is used is entirely for the user to decide, but examples are given on the custom data page, which explains how to add custom data and how it can be used.

Changes/additions to existing objects

Actions

  • New actions:
    • several actions to control new modifiers
  • Change Trail action has new 'Connections' action
  • Custom Data action new mode added to allow incrementing/decrementing the current data value

Branch Modifier

  • Branching algorithm improved and legacy mode added to preserve existing scenes

Collider Tag

  • The 'Exclusions' tab now has an Exclude/Include menu so that it can now accept emitters to exclude or include in collisions with the object.

Colour Modifier

  • New operation modes added
    • Fade Between
    • Distance From Object
    • Distance From Camera
    • Gradient by Parameter modes replicate emitter gradient modes

Data Mapping

  • Can now map to additional data including:
    • Particle index
    • Distance to target using either a cover mod or an inherit mod
    • Spline segment length if using a follow spline modifier
    • Particle scale
  • Shader support added (i.e. map to a shader such as Noise)
  • Support for texture tags added (i.e. can map data to an existing material)

Direction Modifier

  • New relative direction mode added

Emitter

Object tab
  • Emission can be controlled by object colour when emitting from an object
  • Improvements to illumination-controlled emission
  • Particles can be emitted from n-gon centres
  • Moselection tag is supported when emitting from a Mograph cloner
  • Support for emission from a Mograph Matrix or MoText object
  • In defined emission, radial mode now has a 'reverse' switch to reverse the initial direction
  • Particle radius can now be controlled by texture and by emitting polygon size
  • Topology-controlled emission (height, slope, and crevices)
  • The Voronoi Fracture object selection tags are now supported
  • Emitting from the position of each object in a Mograph Cloner is now supported and a multiplier setting added to increase the particle count
Emission tab
  • New emission modes added for uses with the Advanced Fluids module
Extended Data tab
  • Rate of change control added for particle rotations
  • Up-vector added for particle rotations
  • Particle mass can now be linked to its radius
  • Ability to store UV data to the particle added to the Extended Data tab
  • Ability to enter custom particle data added to the Extended Data tab
Groups tab
  • Groups list can now use the conventional ticks/crosses icons to disable or enable groups, and can use groups in hierarchies with the hierarchy icon
Display tab
  • Outline Multiplier control added
  • Can now set the emitter icon colour
Modifiers tab
  • Modifiers list can now use modifiers in hierarchies rather than having to add modifiers individually

Follow Path Modifier

  • New switch added to reduce the crossing over of particle trails when the particles move to the first path object
  • Support for Actions to be executed when the particle enters the path

Follow Spline Modifier

  • Support for Actions to be executed when the particle is captured by the spline
  • New speed mode added

Follow Surface Modifier

  • Falloff tab added to modifier

Gravity Modifier

  • New mode added - Newtonian gravity

Limit Modifier

  • Mapping of limits to individual axes is now possible

Particles Falloff

  • Groups can now be used in the falloff

Question Object

  • New questions:
    • Particle-Particle Collision question
    • Time in Group question
    • Custom Data question
    • Particle Has Connections question
    • Fluid Surface question
  • New mode added to the Particle Age question

Scale Modifier

  • New variation setting added

Spawn Modifier

  • Spawned particles can now inherit scale and/or radius from the source particle

Sprite Object

  • Orientation setting added for placard sprites
  • Sprite lights can now use lens effects
  • New text mode added - 'User Text (Phrases)'

System Object

  • New switches added to the System Object to apply the only modifiers/deformers in the same system to all emitters in that system (no longer necessary to set the switches manually in each emitter)
  • Ability to move/rotate a particle stream when the parent System object is moved/rotated
  • Ability to change the colour of the System Object icon to any colour, or to use the colour of the scene layer the object belongs to

Trail Object

  • Maximum length setting added to the 'Straight Sequence' algorithm
  • New 'Multiple Sequence' algorithm added
  • New thickness mode added - Use Radius (Variable)
  • Cached trails can now retain their colour

Turbulence Modifier

  • New Simplex noise (modified Perlin noise) added

Xpresso nodes

  • The Set Physical Data node now allows you to set the particle group directly rather than using a separate node
  • New Get/Set Custom Data nodes added

New documentation

The X-Particles manual is now fully online. The buttons for all objects which display the relevant manual page should now access the online manual only.

In addition, right-clicking on any parameter shows the usual Cinema 4D context menu. Clicking on 'Show Help' will go to the relevant manual page and jump to the section in the page for that object. This is explained more fully in the 'Getting Help' page.