Animating trails with simulation nodes

this tutorial breaks down how to make the above effect with simulation nodes.

first part – geometry nodes screenshot

  • the first part, distribute some points on faces
  • turn those points to vertices
  • and feed them to the simulation zone
  • Extrude the vertices using the extrude node, make sure the type is set to vertices
  • to make sure the simulation does not extrude every vertex in the mesh including the previously extruded vertices, create a selection of vertices by connecting the top output of the extrude node to the simulation output node
  • this will ensure only the top or tip of the lines are extruded
  • to complete the selection set, connected the top output of the simulation input into the selection input of the extrude node
  • make sure to tick the top input so we have some initial selection for the extrude
  • this selection can also be used in the set position

checkout: Blender physics based cars:

wrapping the lines onto the mesh.

  • get the nearest face/surface to each extruded point using the sample nearest surface node
  • sample the normal, we can use the cross product of the normal and a vector pointing up, to have the points extruded in a circular rotation wrapping onto the mesh.

second part – screenshot

  • to reveal the mesh, we can use the proximity node to create a mask of each line on the mesh
  • you can store the mask into a named attribute to be used in the shader editor

project files:



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