Zelda Breath of the Wild Dust Particles

I really like the VFX in breath of the wild. I want to make these cloud/dust effects are made. I like how they have shadow information to the cloudy areas.
Rain:



Not raining:


Gerudo Desert:

are they using a flipbook or are they panning textures? I noticed that the particles are aligned to face the camera and the panning of the texture seems to follow the direction of the wind. Does it has alpha erosions or is it a normal opacity fade with a special type of mask. what sort of textures are they using? are they using the photoshop clouds or some custom texture?

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I think that it just stretched-billboard spites with simulated smoke. Rotation = velocity direction.

looks like a uv distorted painted smoke mask texture. might also use a very low contrast noise scrolling through it.

I noticed that if you look towards or away from the wind direction the noise seems to go upwards and if you look at from the sides, it pans left or right. I still can’t tell if it is using a flipbook/simulation though…

are they overlapping 2 noise textures or is it just one panning noise? Also, are they using the clouds texture from photoshop or is it a custom noise?

Check out the start of @simonschreibt video here and his fire technique. The smoke your’re looking at appears to be very similar, if not using a technique like this (just softer distort/noise like @sethhall brought up )

The only different I would say is what you pointed out. If it’s panning differently based on camera orientation, they may be grabbing the camera vector, comparing it to the wind vector and plugging that data into the scroll direction in the smoke shader.

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Feels like they’re overlapping the noise and panning them… Nothing too crazy. As for the texture, … hard to say, I don’t get the sense that its just a simple photoshop noise. They also could be sampling the wind direction to determine the angle and feed that to the UVs, which would give the sense they were panning based on the world wind.

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Looks like particles with their opacity receiving UV distortion in the direction of the wind, and then something like Unreal’s particle macro uvs for the cloud texture panning across them. I’m guessing the material is either lit, or the lighting is faked really well

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