DeepSpaceBanana's Sketchbook



Wasn’t planning on it, schedule is a little busy at the moment with me moving etc, but i have some ideas that I might explore.


This was a little experiment I had done a while back when I was messing about with Vertex Deformation Materials. Basically made an actor position/Direction based Vert Deformation Material. Idea was to try and do stuff like semi-procedural dynamic Impact craters. etc Not really feasable for development because of lighting errors/dense geometry but it was fun to try. It basically uses a distance field to describe the shape(In this case just a sphere). It basically uses the normal direction of the shape for the direction that the object deforms. In this case I’ve also multiplied a voronois noise for some random variation in the deformation.

sine-wave for sphere radius:


Had a random idea for a fur shader today, basically uses POM and some vector math to mask the edges, also used that mask to have some subsurface just on the edges of the meshes silhouette to try and fake light passing through tufts of the mesh , also tried to fake some wind animation with some UV math. I Set up a substance graph to generate the fur masks/heightmap. so far it uses two textures, one rgb mask and one normal map…man i use the word “also” a lot…

Anim Test:


I really like this thread. Please keep it up. A few weeks ago I tried something similar to your entry from February 16 (the black deforming spheres). I just wanted the sphere to deform towards the mouse cursor. Encountered some issues with the communication between blueprint and shader (tried parameter collection because someone recommended them to me but I get the feeling that they are not dynamic). May I ask for your approach?


I’m glad you like my thread! I haven’t been able to make any posts lately because I just made a long distance move and it’s going to take a little time before I have my computer set up. I can give you a more detailed breakdown when I have that ready, I think I owe someone a breakdown of the ice shader as well.

For now I’ll give you a brief description and hopefully its enough(I don’t have the editor on my laptop so I’m unable to show any screenshots, sorry):

1.)I am using MPC’s to feed the BP location to the material. There should be a BP node “Set material prameter collection” or something like that which lets you pick your MPC from a list and set whichever Parameter you want. I do this in the Construction script.

2.) Inside the material I use the location parameter to create a Distance Field Sphere(its basically like a 3D Gradient Sphere mask), the formula for a distance field sphere is basically: [Vectorlength(location param - Worldposition) - radius] radius here being the radius you want for the sphere.

3.) I then use this sphere as a mask to interpolate between the location parameter and null. This result goes into WPO.

now you basically have an invisible sphere mask around the BP whose location you use in the material. and as you move it around the gradient of the sphere and its radius deforms whatever objects come near it, exponentially based on distance from the center of the BP. You can control deformation strength etc by dividing mask to control the gradient. I hope that makes sense, I can give a more detailed breakdown when I have my Computer set up.


Thank you very much for your answer! As soon as I have enough time I will definitely try it this way. MPC’s seem to work for this after all. Well I guess I set it up wrongly. And this seems to be the perfect opportunity to play around with distance fields :smiley:
Hope you are settling in fast wherever you live now! Have a nice day!


Finally got my computer set up. Here’s the Node network for that material, you can rework it for your needs. You can ignore the emissive section, but if you are using it, i’d replace the noise node with a texture instead.


Thanks a bunch :smiley:


Alas! School has started and I’ve been busy working on random projects that aren’t very interesting, but I got some downtime this evening and I whipped up this Portal Effect to the courtyard at Epic Games :stuck_out_tongue:



Awesome stuff! Can’t wait to see more :slight_smile:


Some really interesting material effects, nice work!



One thing I’d try is to make the edges of the portal somewhat less defined.
Now they feel really sharp, but that doesn’t feel right for something floating in the middle of a room.
(If it where to be attached to something rigid that would be a different story ofcource)

Also, presentation wise, try to make sure your effect doesn’t hard clip surfaces during the presentation.
Either make it interact with the ground somehow, or drag it up so it doesn’t touch the ground at all, I’d say.

For the second effect, I’d try to fade it out somewhat more towards the center. Right now the center feels to noisy for something your supposed to be able to walk through :smiley:

Anyway, Looks really cool. Keep up the good work :smiley:


You make some good points . I wasnt really thinking about presentation too much with these doodles but, you make a good point for the edges, I think I might do some slight cubic distortion of the environment, kinda like a black hole. .so that it feels more like a tear in the fabric of space - time instead of a floating object in the scene.cheers.


Tried implementing some cubic distortion, the result isn’t what I wanted, but it looks pretty neat though, I was hoping to find a way to have the distortion ignore the portal mesh in the custom depth buffer, but after looking into it some, I’d need to create a seperate render pass to get the effect I want…I think I might try a barell or pincushion distortion to see if any of those look better.I think the pincushion will probably make it seem more like the portal is bending space-time inward…I’m also tempted to do the distortion in PostProcess for a more accurate effect, the clipping in the edges of the sprite really kills the effect.


I LOVE the distortion and warping of the environment around the portal. Looks really sweet. One thing I would do is push the opening animation of the portal a bit more. Right now it just looks like it’s scaling open and not something tearing into reality (at least that’s how I picture a portal opening). Maybe make it a bit snappier?

Just some thoughts. Keep it up!


aah good point, I’m gonna try playing with some turbulance or something, or maybe even like a tearing type effect.


Tried Adding some Turbulance to the animation


You might try to tesselate the whole thing to smooth out the edges. Also, you might try using simple rim lighting (inverted N*ViewDir) to reveal Grabpass on the edges to achieve some additional smooting.


Thanks for the tip, I’ll give it a shot. I’ve been trying to prevent myself from tessellating the mesh, but I guess it looks too jagged without it.


Spend all day searching google for how to implement parallax ice in UE4, come across this fantastically interesting site: time well spent. I have to say, for being just a ‘sketchbook’, your work is amazingly interesting and inspiring! Really top notch stuff! I especially love your ice shader. (I’m a sucker for cool looking ice in games, movies, everything).

Hope you get around to posting a breakdown of that ice shader soon, as I’ve been struggling with my own implementation of such for several days now (the deeper I make an effect look, the more it seems to ‘turn’ towards the camera when I move around it; it keeps WATCHING me! Spooky!), and it would be really nice to have a framework of how someone else makes good looking ice.

In either case, tho, thank you for indirectly leading me to this awesome site! I already see a number of other interesting looking threads I’m about to go check out. Definitely going to be a site I check back on daily. :smiley:

PS. You also got me excited when you said it supports forward shading, which is what my project is using. :smiley: