A blog about VFX, scripting, van renovation, and some other gubbins.


Week 14

Published 21st January 2019 by Henry



Shift click drag to select keyframes on the timeline

Animation snapshot – useful for creating arrays of objects along a path

You can export a hierarchical mesh to UE4 as a skeletal mesh

Animations can be combined into a single timeline and those frames selected (run, jump etc)


Enter to add a keyframe


Object Position node – gets the vec3 of the object it’s applied to

Constant bias scale node – does the same job as an add and a multiply to adjust the scale of a sine wave

(sin x + 1) / 2



Use the lightmap UV set to create variation on an object

Apply vertex colours to faces in Maya to mask textures and create variation

Per Instance Random node – useful for foliage where objects are part of one big object


Particle Random Value for GPU particles


Dynamic Parameter for CPU particles


Blending Materials in UE

Worldspace mapping

AbsoluteWorldPosition outputs a vector3 of the pixel position in world space. Needs to be component masked for use with TextureSample UV pin.

‘Use Material Attributes’ checkbox


Top tip: Use Saturate node instead of Clamp, they do the same thing between 0-1 but not any other range. Saturate is free!


Material functions: create re-usable material parts to bring into other materials

Break/Make Material nodes

Dot product – compare two vectors


Water Material

Derive Normal Z





Screen Space reflections look good but only reflect things on screen

Planar Reflections look awesome, but add loads of overhead and needs to be enabled in Project Settings

Cube Map Reflections also look good but are cheaper because they are pre-rendered to a texture.

Scene capture cube, then in its parameters select a Texture Target:

Create Static Texture

Scene Capture Cube

MF_FixedDepth – good for simulating mist or water depth




Week 13


Week 15

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