Animation design - Ipos, Particules, Scripting or GamEngine?


I’ve a rather complicated design problem, any help is appreciated, thank you! I have a very specific animation idea in my mind and I’m searching for the best method to do it.

[>] What it should look like:
Every 5 frames I would like to create a new ball at a new location that first begins to grow during 10 frames and then shrink during 90 frames. Furthermore, each ball that is created falls down with a certain acceleration. This would happen during approximatively 1 min or 1500 frames (60s*25fps).

[>] What I tried and didn’t work:

  1. First I tried it with a size and location ipo for each ball. The problem is that I’ve manually to give an offset of 5 frames to the ipo of each new ball I create. There will be about 300 balls (1500/5), thus this is very slow and makes it impossible to change an ipo afterwards (because I should change manually the 300 ipos).

  2. Then I tried it with a particule system: I put only a size ipo to my ball, I parent the ball to a one vertice mesh, I add a particule system to that mesh, I activate the particule z-force and animation dupliverts options. I also tell the particule system to generate a ball every 5 frames. The problem here is not that I’m lazy, it simply doesn’t work the way I expected: I can’t tell the particule system to start the animation of each generated ball from the beginning.

[>] What I will try if I don’t find a better solution:
3) I’ll try to script it by first creating one ball containing the size and position ipo. Then I also create 300 empties, and I make a script that creates every 5 frames a new obect at the next empty, and that evaluates for every frame the size of each ball.

  1. Perhaps there is also an elegant solution with the game engine, but I don’t know how it works. But if the game engine is the best solution, I’ll learn it (I have the gamekit book).

If you have any idea of how to solve that problem, I’d be very happy :slight_smile: Thanks!


There’s a nifty tool to automaticly set the Time OffSet of a lot of objects at once.
Just make all the copies you need, be sure they all have the same IPO animation (the motion you want without any offset).
Go to the Animation Buttons window (F7)
Press the Automatic Time button
Change the Total Time value to make it correspond to the total number of frame you want between the begining of the animation of the first and the last object.
Press Ok and you’re done.


Thank you very much, this is really THE function I was looking for! It works perfectly and is so easy to use!

I’m also impressed of the efficiency of this forum, it’s just :smiley: :smiley: :stuck_out_tongue: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: :wink: [!]