UE4 Getting a Soft Edge on a Mesh Emitter?

Hey guys,
I’ve become stuck with a problem in the material editor in UE4 and thought I’d ask for some help.

I’ve just started adding Meshes (created in Maya) into my VFX workflow and I’m following ImbueFX’s tutorials for the basics, but I’m having trouble getting soft edges on my Mesh?

Right now I’m using an Additive, Unlit material and a panning texture node to create refraction on a sphere mesh, but I’m trying to get the edges of the sphere to appear soft, or fade out, rather than a harsh circular line. ImbueFX uses a CameraVector and Dot products it with a 3 vector with 1 in blue (Z-axis) to achieve this but it isnt working for me? I’ve tried using Fresnels, 1-x Fresnels and loads of other things but I feel like I’m missing something. Would someone be able to point me to the direction of a tutorial that covers this exactly? Or a step-by-step - I think I’m forgetting something obvious!

I’m very new to VFX and teaching it all myself so any advice would be really appreciated!

I often bake Vertex Colours - (0-1 value range) into my mesh’s for soft edges, means sometimes you have to go back to another program and tweak but gives you exact control of the falloff and softeness of your edge

Hey! A simple material like this should do the trick. I don’t know what have you been doing but a common problem with this is the fact that fresnel outputs values in [0…1] range which works well for opacity but refraction uses different range and to get no refraction on your mesh you actually need to use value of 1.


You are an absolute lifesaver!! That is exactly what I was encountering. Because I’m trying to use a noise texture to create a textured refraction I was making it even more confusing for myself, haha. Thank you!

I didn’t know this was possible! Thanks for the info Chris, I’ll definitely give that a go in the future. Thank you!

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