Scatter5 open-beta

Hey Guys,
I’ve been quite silent recently, it’s for a really good reason :eyes:
I’ve been working really hard on geometry node. and I got some exciting stuff to show & share.

There will be an announcement coming in 5 to 6 Days with a direct open-access on the currently work-in-progress Scatter5 project. Months of work accessible for all during the early stage of development like it was one year ago with the initial Scatter1 project. This project will also be more accessible for everyone once it’s finally ready.

Stay tuned.
Can’t wait to show you everything.
Cheers

19 Likes

What a teasing! :nerd_face: :robot:

1 Like

hello, how exactly i can export a dae mesh from what i ake by the scatter with texture ?

Thannks

Hello,
in the scatter tweaking panel there’s an export section where you can export selected system(s) to objects

hello ,
thanks for quick response , i wish tp get help about export with textures so i get one textured model . possible ?

Thanks

That’s it. Scatter5 Beta for latest 2.93 is now open for everyone.

You can get it here.

Current version: Open Beta 02
https://drive.google.com/drive/u/1/folders/1F1qNF39Bf9q8TgyC4hfPf84702BZ3HP6

A lot of functionalities from Scatter4 got improved and there are tons of new features such as distribution by ID map, new procedural wind system, particles push effects, new copy/paste & synchronization system, Remove particles by AO/lighting & more… The to-do list is still long but i’ll get there soon :grinning:

About installation:

  • Install Scatter5 as a traditional .zip You don’t need to uninstall Scatter4 both addon can co-exists witouth problems, note that you will need latest blender 2.93. Also don’t expect retro compatibility of particle systems created with anterior versions of Scatter5 until official Scatter5 release.
  • Install the preset .scatpack inside Scatter manager.
  • Note that this is a work-in-progress build, you may encounter some placeholder buttons in the GUI or even in worst case bugs (let me know if you find some).

What’s New?

  • Improvements:
    • Scatter now run on the brand new geometry-node nodal scattering system of blender 2.93+ you will observe that for each created system a new scatter_obj is created accompanied with a per particle unique CCBY node group parametrically configured when tweaking settings.
    • much better scale & rotation control.
    • batch-changing values is now much more handy, you can select multiple systems and hold ALT to batch change selected properties from active particle-system value.
    • Important Issue with vertex-groups affecting the density is now fixed, so the mask system of Scatter is now way more powerful.
    • speaking of the mask workflow, it’s now using per particles “density-slots” assignation.
    • Important Issue with inaccurate particle position within the viewport fixed.
    • Issue with particle count limited to 2Billion particles fixed
    • Custom scatter-library path support.
    • no more rotation tracking axis nonsense from the old hair-scattering workflow.
    • as the scattering is done on an external object, selecting the emitter will no longer highlight outlines of particles, this will save us previous performances.
    • Collection Scattering is now enabled with new instancing seed option.
    • There’s great Focus the on the custom presets and biomes management with .preset .biome and .scatpack file format to easily create/export/share/sell your work/biomes.
  • All new features from Beta Version 00:
    • new local/global scattering option
    • new rotation snap feature
    • new limit-distance option thanks to the new poison disk algorithm, you can now avoid self-collision by distance.
    • new rotation alignment feature where you can easily align your particle normal and tangent axis to create for example billboards that follow your camera around.
    • new vectorial scale randomization option
    • the texture patterns are now per texture-data, meaning that a single texture can be used for multiple particle systems, in addition to that you can choose different ID from a single texture, so it’s now extremely easy to create accurate clustering map that do not overlap. It’s also now possible to Invert the density/scale influence.
    • you can also easily apply/create procedural texture from presets in the pattern header menu.
    • easily assign and paint vertex groups for most features.
    • paint density by vertex color ID extremely easily.
    • new Universal Copy/paste buffer per settings (located per settings header).
    • new reset to default operator (located per settings header).
    • every particle system created with scatter are unique by default, so there’s no “linking” workflow, but there’s something much more powerful! synchronization channels! you can create synchronization channels that will synchronize designed settings category with designed particle systems (it can work cross-emitters).
    • copy/paste particle-system(s), & optionally synchronize their settings.
    • new settings lock/unlock option.
    • new “Particle Terrain Features” settings, filter your particles by terrain slope/elevation/normal direction (without using any vertex groups).
    • new real-time camera culling & clipping options working (without using any vertex groups).
    • new display instances as placeholder option (can also support custom placeholders).
    • new settings update controls, choose if you’d like to send updates to your particles in real-time, on mouse release or every X ms.
    • new “Particle Push” settings with a lot of control. It’s handy if you’d like to displace your particles above the ground but i quite push this feature to it’s extreme limit as you can easily create explosion effect, “fireflies” effect, snow&leaves falling or lanterns flying up in the air and even clouds hovering above your terrain (animation not yet supported).
    • new “Wind” system that creates realistic wind by rotating your particles. It’s one of my personal favorites, I’m sure that many will love this feature as IMO it’s extremely satisfying to use and creates quite nice results! There’s also quite a lot of control. you can even paint wind force.
    • With Clemens Beute flowmap painter addon you can paint particles tangent alignment and also control wind direction https://gumroad.com/clemensbeute#heZDT (flowmap painting option must be set on UV space)
    • In Scatter you use an object pointer to choose the terrain you want to work with, well there’s a new option that uses the “pin” functionality of blender. It’s nice if you are often switching emitter. note that for scattering the emitter need to be pinned.
    • Customize the GUI! use icons, or arrows. there’s also an alternative box look & the possibility to grey out inactive tabs.
    • Mask workflow improvements! new AO & lighting baking using the latest vertex-color baking option. it’s automatically converted to vertex groups. There’s also a much better falloff editor with even the possibility to animate the falloff and refresh the designed masks for each frame (It can be extremely handy for motion design).
  • Beta Version 01 Update:
    • new Clump distribution method!
    • Slight GUI rework
    • Added mask per patterns/terrain features
    • Operator to simplify a nodetree, handy to remove all inactive nodes
  • Beta Version 02 Update:
    • new instancing method, by scale / color id / by rate
    • added back the set active object as target
    • new strength properties for most align Z method

Roadmap:

  • Tasks (some may be ported to posterior versions):
    • high-priority - work with @carbon2 on manual distribution brushes (I’ll do GUI & design) . The manual distribution workflow needs to be useful & fun for concept-artists. It also needs to mix well with the procedural system & support Wacom tablets & co.
    • high-priority - Bug: separate node completely remove all attr if input geo type is mesh. (this should be resolved by the developers sooner or later I believe) patially fixed for normal attr i think it can be fixed once domain convert exists, mesh → point-cloud should do the job IMO
    • high-priority - Support key-framed python properties (for some reason python properties don’t send any update signal when keyframed).
    • high-priority re-implement bitmap library & easily skip/random the bitmaps + add new colored bitmaps for RGB/ID scattering
    • high-priority - Distribution by proximity with other particles (& objects?) this is currently not possible when scattering from an external object because object info node output vertices, not points. so I’m in standby waiting for this patch https://developer.blender.org/T86970 This is quite an important feature i’d like to add, as this will give us the opportunity to add distribution rules by proximity of other particles.
    • high-priority - Finish the parametric masks.
    • high priority - blender error message when scattering coming from an object info node, might be slowing down performance? reported.
    • high-priority - Better camera-culling settings to create distance driven LOD particles set-up (this is completely useless for non-game engines but it got requested a lot )
    • high-priority - one-click biomes creation operator + make sure the biome system is easy and flexible enough for third parties, implement more options such as custom placeholder? implement better-instancing options for biomes.
    • high-priority - Implement children Distribution method with specific rotation & scale options.
    • high-priority - display particle count information then build the statistic panel. (also linked with /m² estimation and maybe try to guess your future particle-count before scattering? will be prolly done by update square area on preset.s_distribution_density update fct).
    • high-priority - work on the security features. avoid crashing when displaying too much particles or geometry.
    • high-priority - support material/script/asset type in the biome manager.
    • high-priority - export operators
    • high-priority - enable vertex-group baking & compile libs for MacOS/Linux (cross compiled libs?)
    • high-priority - placeholder switch on final render, (standby for switch node)
    • easily create this kind of cool effect as suggested by @Iqfish
    • Icon generation for biomes and preset.
    • New set of features that will let us have more control on how instances are spawned (by id map? by percentage of spawn? by scale? not sure yet but there’s a lot of potential that i need to explore).
    • with @carbon2 design & implement a useful point cloud visualization display method that brings considerable performance boost & reactivity to the openGL viewport when working with a lot of particles & dense geometry instances. Placeholders are nice, but ideally, we need something more advanced than this.
    • Support Lodify within Scatter.
    • update Lodify, it’s currently not refreshing correctly + got requested to batch apply transforms for all LOD.
    • Enable Global / Local space projection for wind texture and pattern texture not needed i think
    • Current viewport % method might not be that efficient, might need to change order of node operation? could also optimize textures density influence that way? Nope cannot
    • vertex-mask support for Patterns Slots Settings.
    • vertex-mask support for Terrain features Settings.
    • copy/paste a psys is a bit slow, it should be at least 2x faster
    • display points as simple point-cloud type?
    • Implement Value Remapping Graph into the workflow once blender allows it.
    • low priority - option that let particles displaced it’s own emitter (might be impossible due to feedback loop).
    • low priority - placeholder custom colors? better placeholder manager?
    • low priority - Animated instance time shifting feature? Need to tinker about this issue.
    • low priority - Volume scattering? maybe
    • low priority - destructive operator to automatically cleanup the GPL scattering nodegroups?
    • low priority - support multiple render engines for the manager?
    • low priority - First blender patch! when i have some spare time, tinker with a pixel-based
      distribution
      python/C++ algorithm then learn & try to implement the feature as patch.
    • low priority - support flow map coming from bitmaps for Y alignment and wind tilt !
    • low priority – pathway scattering with correct normal/tangent orientation (use case: edges, streets lamps etc…
    • low priority - clumping with rotation alignment influence? possible with geonode? i don’t think so Yes possible & implmented
    • low priority - more rotation control? . done
    • low priority - multi-object emitter? especially for manual brushes
  • Pre Release Stage:
    • Better Default Presets
    • Convert all biomes of builtin library
    • Help all third parties to get their biomes done. Especially Graswald biomes that have been long-awaited.
    • Split features between Scatter 5 Pro/Free version
    • Write Documentation
    • New Website
    • Marketing & stuff
    • Post-release do tutorials!
30 Likes

Great work! Excited to try it:)

Cheers!

Wow, that was quick. Thank you very much. Will download and try :slight_smile:

Edit After 15 Minutes of tinkering:

Fantastic. an all around improvement.
Looking forward to your roadmap.

May I already throw a request in the ring? Utilizing Dynamic paint masks to drive particle scale and rotation per axis would be amazing. In Houdini I use a contact mask to rotate the effected particles 90° and flatten them. That gives the impression of “Flattened Grass”, like if a big object rolled over it.
With the dynamic paint fading, you could even have the grass “recover” after a while.

So many possibilites!

2 Likes

I don’t know how to install that, should i uninstall scatter 4 before?

Anyone know if it works in 2.92. 2.93 will not work on my operating system. Thanks

New Scatter based on geometry nodes?

Yes! look at the post above it just got updated

Cool beta!

If I thought I somewhat knew how scatter worked behind the scenes before, I definitely don’t now :smile:.

I am assuming the UI will look more similar to the scatters 4 UI where there aren’t sub-panels hiding everything.

Also, are there plans for a particle system or general conversion feature? That would be really nice for asset packs that do not support scatter. It would also make things much easier for me coding conversion tools for some of those asset packs.

This new release is changing everything internally as we switched to geometry node
If you have some more specific questions i might have some answers :slight_smile:
in the main __init__.py there’s some ASCII graphs explaining the pipeline a bit.

Congrats for the beta release :slight_smile:

Stupid question of the day, are there any biomes in this beta version?

1 Like

It seems it will be great upgrade!

I have a suggestion - Make an typ of alee scatter functionality, to create for example line of trees along the road, like an array (follow the path) but with all the tweaking of scale, rotation etc. What is crucial it should be a regular distance between objects.

I hope you find it intressting!

2 Likes

Nope, I’ll do biomes at the very end.
I’ll maybe share biomedemonstration.scatpack or something like that later

like an array (follow the path)

I’ll add it to the todo

3 Likes

it would be nice to see the distribution by quantity for each particle

Indeed, more control over the instances is already on the TODO

3 Likes

Hmm… When I click scatter selected, nothing happens… When I then add a geometry nodes modifier and select the scatter nodetree the landscape disappears and I see no scattering at all… :slight_smile: Is there anything I’m doing wrong? I’ve made the terrain using a heightmap, and that worked just fine.
Otherwise I’m really hyped for this version, I just hope it’s me doing something wrong… xD Just bought version 4 pro to get the 5 when that comes. It’s really awesome!