Boids on the surfice of a lumpy thing - can it be done?

Can this be done in Blender?

I’d to run a boids flocking simulation on the surface of a lumpy shape… not just on the top, but all over it, running on the sides and the bottom as well… Can this be done? One plan of how to do this was to duplicate the object to the vertices of — probably a geosphere — and use the shrink-wrap modifier to attach them to the surface of the object, but it would be better to use flocking.

There’s the Allow Climbing function - how does that work? The only thing I can find about is “Allows Boids to climb goal objects” and I don’t know how do set something as a goal object.

I tried to have boids crawl on the surface of a deformed icosphere but, so far, no good result. The boids end up ignoring pretty much anything to climb to the north pole. I tried with a force field or a goal inside the icosphere… Not much better.

As for setting a goal, it’s done in the Boid Brain. Click the “+”. When you select “Goal”, a new text field will appear below the brain settings list to allow you to enter the name of the goal object.


This is actually for a biological animation I’ve been asked to make, about cells on the serfice of bones. suddenly I realised the scale was such that the cells were on a nearly flat serfice anyway. My first test for this is this: . It’s rough, it’s just a test so far.

Allow Climbing seems to only work if you enable Allow Flight and Allow Landing. The particle system also must have a rule of a GOAL and you must select a valid mesh object for that goal. Make sure to zero out Banking under Misc to remove unwanted twitching.

Enable Self-Effect force field to keep the boids from colliding with themselves. I prefer the Force settings over the Air and Land Personal space percentage which does not seem to have much effect.

I was playing around with this concept today and came up with a possible solution using boids and land.


265_boids_CLIMB_LAND_ENEMY.blend (711 KB)