Modding:Simple Particles

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VintageStory offers a variety of different types of particles. This tutorial will explain you how to create simple particles and show you some of the possibilities. If you want to have an example of where to use them I either suggested you to the read about the block particles or about collectibles.

Spawn particles

So let's spawn some basic particles. I suggest to create a static field for your particle properties:

    public static SimpleParticleProperties myParticles = new SimpleParticleProperties(1, 1, ColorUtil.ColorFromRgba(220, 220, 220, 255), new Vec3d(), new Vec3d(), new Vec3f(), new Vec3f());

Now we have the property, the only thing left to do is to set the position and spawn the particles into the world. I'm gonna use the OnHeldInteractStart and *Step method inside a custom made Item class (you can read more about this in the Collectibles Tutorial):

        public override void OnHeldInteractStart(ItemSlot slot, EntityAgent byEntity, BlockSelection blockSel, EntitySelection entitySel, bool firstEvent, ref EnumHandHandling handling)
            handling = EnumHandHandling.Handled;

        public override bool OnHeldInteractStep(float secondsUsed, ItemSlot slot, EntityAgent byEntity, BlockSelection blockSel, EntitySelection entitySel)
            myParticles.minPos = byEntity.Pos.XYZ.Add(0, byEntity.LocalEyePos, 0).Ahead(1f, byEntity.Pos.Pitch, byEntity.Pos.Yaw);

            return true;

This will spawn some white cube particles right in front of the player, which simply fall to the ground.


Properties Overview

There are several things you can configure. Here is an overview which covers all of the properties:


Basically there are two properties. One of them is the MinPos property, which will determine the exact position where particles will spawn. AddPos is relative to this position, once a particle will spawn it will be randomized and added to the particle's position. If AddPos is not defined all particles will spawn at the exact some position.

Same position:

Particle (equal position).png

If we now set AddPos ...

    myParticles.AddPos = new Vec3d(0.5, 0.5, 0.5);

... particles will spawn in an 0.5³ area:

Particle (differnt position).png


It follows the same way as position. You can configure a minimum velocity (MinVelocity) and an additional velocity (AddVelocity).

    myParticles.MinVelocity = new Vec3f(0, 3, 0);

In this case all particles have the same velocity (particles fly in the air but will eventually fall down again):

Particles (equal velocity).gif

Life length

This property is pretty straight forward. A life length of one equals one second.

Particles will exist for one 200 milliseconds ...

    myParticles.LifeLength = 0.2F;

Particles (short life).gif

Particles will exist for one second ...

    myParticles.LifeLength = 1F;

Particles (long life).gif


Determines how many particles will spawn.

    myParticles.MinQuantity = 3;

This will spawn 3 particles each tick.

Particles (many).gif

Furthermore you can specify an additional quantity chance ...

    myParticles.MinQuantity = 0;
    myParticles.AddQuantity = 100;

This will spawn 0 to 100 particles per tick.

Particles (random many).png


A color can be specified using ARGB (Alhpa, Red, Green, Blue). All values have a range of 0 to 255.

    myParticles.Color = ColorUtil.ColorFromRgba(255, 0, 0, 255);

This will spawn red particles ...

Particles (red).gif

    Random rand = new Random();
    myParticles.Color = ColorUtil.ColorFromRgba(rand.Next(0, 255), rand.Next(0, 255), rand.Next(0, 255), 255);

This will spawn particles with a random color ...

Particles (random colors).gif


Gravity effect can not only be increase or decreased, ...

    myParticles.GravityEffect = 0.1F;

Particles (low gravity).gif

... but you can also disable it completely (using zero gravity) or invert it (particles will fly up).


Again, you can specify a minimum size and an additional randomized size ...

    myParticles.MinSize = 0.1F;
    myParticles.MaxSize = 1.0F;

Particles (random size).gif

Furthermore you can specify a SizeEvolve like so ...

    myParticles.MinSize = 0.1F;
    myParticles.MaxSize = 1.0F;
    myParticles.SizeEvolve = new EvolvingNatFloat(EnumTransformFunction.LINEAR, 2);

Particles (growing size).gif

There are many EnumTransformFunctions you can play around with. Linear is the most basic one.


There are two types of models. Cube (the one we used so far) and Quads:

    myParticles.ParticleModel = EnumParticleModel.Quad;

Particles (quads).gif


Quads support custom opacity. This allows you to make them transparent ...

    myParticles.Color = ColorUtil.ColorFromRgba(rand.Next(0, 255), rand.Next(0, 255), rand.Next(0, 255), 130);

Particles (opacity).gif

Similar to SizeEvolve you can add an OpacityEvolve ...

    myParticles.OpacityEvolve = new EvolvingNatFloat(EnumTransformFunction.LINEAR, -255);

Particles (decreasing opacity).gif

Self Propelled

This property will make particles don't lose their velocity, even if they would collide with something, as soon as there is enough space they will continue to fly in the direction (with the same speed) ...

    myParticles.MinVelocity = new Vec3f((float) (rand.NextDouble() - 0.5), 1f, (float) (rand.NextDouble() - 0.5));
    myParticles.SelfPropelled = true;

Particles (selfpropelled).gif

Die In Air/ Liquid

This property is useful for particles in water, which should disappear once they reach the surface (die in liquid). Of course this can also be used the other way round (die in air).

    myParticles.ShouldDieInAir = true;
    myParticles.ShouldDieInLiquid = true;
    myParticles.ShouldSwimOnLiquid = true;

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