Get Things Rolling with RealFlow | Cinema 4D 2.5
We’re back with an update for RealFlow | Cinema 4D! We didn’t just fix bugs, but added lots of nice features as well. These functions give you more possibilities, flexibility, and control.
A New Vertex Map Approach
Have you ever made use of the mesh engine’s → vertex maps to enhance your fluid renders? If the answer is yes then you certainly know that vertex maps were limited to speed so far. But RealFlow’s → fluid and material solvers offer much more channels. With this update you now have a wider choice and we’ve added vorticity, age, and weight maps.
Furthermore we’ve introduced a new, much more intuitive and artist-friendly workflow. In previous versions you had to deal with an abstract “Scale” parameter. Instead of guessing a value it’s now possible to adjust speed, age, and vorticity precisely through → ranges – or let RealFlow | Cinema 4D do the work with the new “Auto” mode.
The icing on the cake is that you can now evaluate the changes in Cinema 4D’s viewport as you’re used to do with native Cinema 4D vertex maps. This means that you no longer have to create preview renders to see the result of your settings. Truly a huge time saver.
And to give you an impression of how these vertex maps affect your fluids we’ve created some videos for you. This clip is a side-by-side comparison of the speed, vorticity, and age channels:
In this video you can see four differently coloured fluids. Weight maps are used to create the colour mixing effects in areas where the fluids touch and interact. To create softer colour transition we have applied the new → “Smoothing Length Scale” parameter to the mesh:
Updates on the maps’ ranges will be applied automatically and displayed in the viewport, but changes on “Smoothing Length Scale” require that the meshes to be recreated.
This neat helper has been added to ease the process of adjusting daemons. RealFlow | Cinema 4D’s new → “Visualizer” is able to make forces visible and even show how they evolve and change over time. Now you have full control over daemons and instant visual feedback.
You can choose between arrows, lines, and points – and you can also display these modes as streamlets. Streamlets trace the forces over a short timespan and this results in a curved view of the force, giving you a sense of direction. One of the most interesting feature is that the “Visualizer” also shows the combined result from multiple daemons. You can decide which daemons should be visualized together with simple drag and drop. Here we have a bounded → “Noise Field”, → “Vortex”, and an animated → “Attractor”:
The “Visualizer” works with the following force-based daemons: “Attractor”, “Gravity”, “DSpline”, “Noise Field”, “Vortex”, and “Wind”. For obvious reasons you can’t visualize k daemons or the “Filter”.
Another, very important, novelty is the introduction of time offsets for cached fluids. So far you haven’t been able to shift the start and end frames of your particle and mesh sequences, for example if you wanted to synchronize them with other animated assets in your scene. In many cases it was necessary to batch rename the files or do other fancy things. But those days are over now.
- Every → fluid, → rigid, → elastic, and → mesh container has its own node-specific “Offset”.
- Furthermore, there’s a → global → “Frame Offset” located in the “Scene” object.
- Both offsets influence each other: total offset = nodespecific offset + global frame offset
This way you’ll be able to shift simulation nodes freely and independently from each other, and define custom time offsets in both positive and negative directions.
(Many) More Improvements
Another important fix is that initial states will be kept from now on when you remove a simulation’s cache files. This may sound like a side note, but in fact it saves you lots of time!
And since we’ve been jumping on the “visualization train” there’s another new function: the → “Image” emitter is now capable of showing the attached image/pattern in the viewport. This will help you to identify the areas of emission. Furthermore, this emitter now supports animated textures, for example Cinema 4D’s noise types.
Not to forget the → “Fill” emitter. Now this neat little helper makes it easier to fill your objects with particles, but they can also be covered with a layer of particles.
The connection to Cinema 4D’s Thinking Particles module became much more robust, less RAM-intense, and got a new → workflow, making it easier to keep track of multiple particles/TP sources.
Our friends at → Jawset Visual Computing, the makers of TurbulenceFD, also surprised us with a neat feature: it’s no longer necessary to create Thinking Particles from RealFlow fluids in conjunction with TurbulenceFD. Aall you have to do is to apply a “TurbulenceFD” emitter to a RealFlow emitter, fluid, rigid, or elastic container directly. This improvement requires at least version v1.0 Rev 1435.
Many emitters (“Circle”, “Image”, “Square”, and “Triangle”) provide a → “Volume” parameter. This option allows you to create a defined initial volume of particles. A new handle in the emitters’ viewport gizmo lets you define this volume simply by dragging the handle, but of course you can still use numerical values as well.
Finally, we’ve added a falloff to the → “DSpline” daemon.
Of course, we’ve also improved the plugin’s overall stability, and updated to the latest Dyverso library. Experienced users will be happy to hear that the new 2.5 functions can be highlighted in Cinema 4D’s user interface.