Move multiple objects on path and have some control over them?

Hi!

I’m storyboarding a project at the moment and I want to do something similar to this image. You can see it on Behance in higher resolution as well.

I want to model some “data cubes” in different shapes, let’s say cube, rectangle and pyramid to represent different data. I want them to move on a path to “datacenter” for an explainer I’m working on.

I can do this with particle system and force field. But I want to have more control over it. For example set distance between cubes and control speed. I don’t want to manually animate lots of objects on paths by hand :frowning:

I’m coming from After Effects background, so not sure if there is some way to have “dashes” on paths and replace dashes with objects, then offset them all?

What would be the best approach in this situation?
Instances of an object on path and move main object?
Animation nodes set up?
Geometry Nodes?

This is the closest thing I found that looks like a potential solution - I haven’t tested it yet.
Not sure if I can offset animation, so all of them move on a path at set distance and control the speed?

It all depends on exactly what you want to do.

For what you’re showing I would use object->array modifier (empty offset)->curve modifier and animate the location of the object + empty. To change the distance between subelements, you could have two different arrays, or you could have one object and shapekey it.

To do things by speed, which Blender isn’t good at, I would just tune shape of fcurves in the graph editor, looking at the slopes (the steepness of the slope is the speed).