NickR: Sketch #35

Hello there!

I’ve kept up with the forums here for quite a while and finally decided to jump into one of these monthly sketches. My main inspiration is a scene from a movie that blew me away the first time I saw it: the intro to X-Men 2 with Nightcrawler.


I want to invoke that feeling of energy and the use of time ramping up and down as he takes out multiple enemies, however I think I will avoid the dark ink/smoke look, and instead go for something like a refractive tear in dimensions that looks like it’s bending the light.

Will post an update soon!


My current progress (quick gif of the partial scene and the link to full video on Vimeo)


Full video on Vimeo

Imgur version:


Nice! A little “Bamf!” action in the mix sounds great! I’m looking forward to seeing this one :slight_smile:

Jumped into maya and created a tendril-type sequence using fluid-driven particles. Pulled that into after effects for some tweaks and ended up with this. I’ll cut this in half, using the first 64 frames for the teleport exit and the second 64 for the teleport entry. Will also pull a normal map for the refraction. More to come soon!




Here’s a quick setup in blueprint. The nightcrawler stand-in randomly selects from the array of enemies, then selects a position in a circle around the selected target. He then teleports to that position, facing inward toward the enemy, and plays an attack animation (aquired from the ue4 marketplace a while ago).


More work today: A first pass on an erosion for the assassin. Doesn’t need to be too fancy as it will be happening very quickly and be mixing with particles. Just a hint of chromatic edge and the idea that he is dissolving instead of popping out.


And a first look at the previously uploaded flipbook in ue4 (just the first 64 frames). It needs an irregular erosion as it fades, as it is too uniform now.



Looking very tasty :eyes: definitely looking forward to this one!

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Thanks, I appreciate it! Definitely planning to dive in and really spend some time on this over the weekend!

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Just a quick update pulling together everything i posted so far. I have plenty of time to work over the weekend and will post a video on Monday instead of these low quality gifs!


Things to add:

Impacts and hit reacts on enemies
Switch up the attack animation variation
Add more “oomph” to the teleport entry and exit (flares, camera shakes, etc?)
Thin distortion tendrils stretching between one teleport location and the next
Get speed ramping working
Get smaller scale particles in with the flipbook elements
The assassin shouldn’t ever attack the same target or be in the same position twice in a row.




I had a lot of fun with this over the weekend! As promised, here’s a full video:

Current Sketch Progress

Imgur version:


I love these camera pans and water splashes! It really gives it a cinematic look.

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Looks good!! :heart_eyes:

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Amazing!! :open_mouth:

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Everyone else may as well bow out :wink:

Looks super cool! I would love to get a small breakdown of how you made that flipbook. Never really seen anything like that come from a fluidsim :open_mouth:

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Seems like Nick applied some Vector Blur in After Effects over that fluidsim he made in Maya to achieve that look!

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Lush is correct! Basically the steps were as follows:

  1. Send out 6 “Leader” particles in maya
  2. Emit from each of these into a fluid container (fluid itself is completely invisible)
  3. Emit more particles as well from each of these Leaders (millions of new ones)
  4. Set these newly emitted particles to be very transparent, additive, and affected by the fluid motion
  5. Render
  6. Bring the render into After Effects
  7. Make several duplicates with increasingly large amounts of blur
  8. Multiply each of these duplicates over an animated turbulent noise, each with different settings
  9. Add all of these together
  10. Vector blur over the whole thing

And now it’s ready for shader work in UE4

Hope this helps!


This is looking mighty wicked! Nice work, NickR. Seems like there could be a UE4 short film in the making for you here :wink:

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That could be fun! I was also thinking of a little gameplay prototype. I started off using blueprint to set this up, then realized I wanted more of cinematic shot rather than a randomized or procedural system where he would randomly select an enemy, etc. Ideally, I would just rebuild this whole thing in sequencer, if I decided to go for a short film. I currently have too many personal projects going right now though!

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This is so great, I love it! :star_struck:
I would love to see like a radial shock wave when he spawns, some what like when you drop a stone on the water. I know that maybe it isnt you you are up to (the reference does not have it), but it maybe adds to the feeling. :grin:


How did you add all those nice colors? A gradient map with your grayscale-texture as base?