Wc3C.net Classical Ribbons vs Emitter Ribbons
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09-13-2006, 10:12 AM   #1
Daelin
Kelani Mage

Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 737

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Classical Ribbons vs Emitter Ribbons

Classical ribbons vs emitter ribbons

1. Introduction
Even though blizzard’s classical ribbons have become extremely popular and they are being used by many modelers, in some cases, regardless the low number of polies, their quality can be really poor, and simply not serve the purpose you seek. Deciding to experiment with blizzard particle emmiters, I have succeeded to come up with a new way of creating ribbons.
In order to be able to complete the tutorial successfully, you will need 3dsmax with Art Tools. I will not teach you here modeling, ribbons, or particles, but just this technique I have come up to, step by step.

Go to geometry – Particle Systems. Select BlizPart and create a group of particles.
Having them selected, apply the following settings (blue are fixed values, red vary)
Quote:
 Emitter Options Speed: -0.5 Cone Angle: 0 Timing Options Life(sec): 1.00 Parts/sec: 50.00 Size Options Width: 5,0 Length: 5,0 Particle Options Head Other Options Particles in model space: off XY Quads: off

The important parameters here are the variable ones. Be very careful how you change them.
I usually keep speed to a small value. I also find the ribbons better when the value is negative. Never give speed a value of 0 because then the ribbon will look flat.
Life also depends a lot on the speed. If you add a longer lifetime, make sure that speed is smaller and vice-versa.
Number of particles/second is also very important. On them depends the number of polies your effect will have. Too many will mean a highpoly model. Too small may make your ribbon look like it has been cut into pieces.

3. Creating the ribbon
If you keep the particles in place you will obtain the head of the ribbon but no tail. In order to give the effect of a ribbon you must move the particles around.
Note: Moving the particles too fast may require more “particles/sec” unless you want to obtain an interrupted ribbon. You can lower in this case polycount by reducing their lifetime.
Here two examples comparing the two types of ribbons.

4. Which to choose?
It’s a good question. You can choose any of them, since both will do in most situations. Here are the differences between the two types of ribbons:

Code:
```Classical ribbons                                  Emitter ribbons
¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯                                  ¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯
Always uninterrupted                               Interrupted when moved too fast.
Excellent for long textures.                       Excellent for ribbons made out
of smaller pieces.
Lower polycount.                                   Higher polycount.
Stretched texture in some situations.              Always good mapping.```

I cannot tell you where to use one or another. This is totally up to you and your needs. Experiment with both a little and then decide which one would fit better the model (and the poly limit you can afford).
If you have any questions, suggestions or comments, do not hesitate to post them here.

~Daelin
Attached Images
 RibbonsExample1.jpg (58.6 KB, 416 views) RibbonsExample2.jpg (61.9 KB, 363 views)
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Last edited by Daelin : 09-13-2006 at 01:13 PM.

 09-13-2006, 10:44 AM #2 Pheonix-IV I want you inside me...     Join Date: Oct 2002 Posts: 4,006 Submissions (17) Each is viable depending on what you're trying to do. If, for example, you're after a blade effect like the blademaster has, something to show that something is moving really quickly though the air, then normal ribbon emitters are what you're after. If you want a sort of firey, flashy effect then particle emitters are more appropriate. It's entirely situational. Also, the particles per second doesn't help much past about 100 or so. I tried making one with something like 1000 a second to see how fast i could move it, but there was no noticable difference between 1000 and 100 or any numbers between, both in number of particles visible and in what speed it began to 'stutter' __________________
09-13-2006, 10:49 AM   #3
Daelin
Kelani Mage

Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 737

Submissions (48)

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Pheonix-IV Each is viable depending on what you're trying to do.
That's what I said, that it depends on your needs.

Quote:
 Originally Posted by Pheonix-IV Also, the particles per second doesn't help much past about 100 or so
I never needed more than 70 particles per second. Not only they can turn into increasingly highpoly stuff, you won't need emitters for moving stuff SO fast. Particles are more useful for detail stuff, while ribbons are damn good for quick, sharp effects.
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I am Grand Magister Daelin Silverwing not Grand Admiral Daelin Proudmoore!!!

 09-13-2006, 12:03 PM #4 Pheonix-IV I want you inside me...     Join Date: Oct 2002 Posts: 4,006 Submissions (17) I've had a couple of times where really really fast moving particles would have been an improvement, trying to do a magical sniper shot for example, i wanted to have a sort of traily cone effect go away from it, but if i put the speed past about 2000 then the cone got screwed up, and since i wanted it at about 3500, that was annoying. __________________
 09-13-2006, 01:20 PM #5 TDR ♪♫   Modeling & Gallery Moderator   Join Date: Aug 2004 Posts: 4,481 Submissions (84) I say, this is pretty usefull. It should be approved. __________________ DOOM models - currently on hold... I DON'T TAKE ANY REQUESTS! p o r t f o l i o
 09-13-2006, 01:41 PM #6 erwtenpeller *****istrator   Art Director   Join Date: Nov 2003 Posts: 8,759 Submissions (35) I'm all for approval as well. __________________ Tides of Blood v.O Most recent update: Version N Patch Fix - Elemental Wars - Ant Wars - erwtenpeller.com - Game Art Student Blog *NEW!
 09-18-2006, 09:21 PM #7 PitzerMike Alcopops   Tools & Tutorials Moderator   Join Date: Jan 2003 Posts: 2,794 Submissions (12) Great. I've edited changed the colored text to bold as it was hard to read on some forum themes. Approved. __________________
09-25-2006, 11:14 PM   #8

Respected User

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Posts: 1,699

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emitter ribbons just looks like particles, like the frost wyrm attack. It can look nice in some way, but not always. Cus classical ribbon is alot better for a motion effect.
Emitter ribbons cant do this motion effect on instant movement, but it is nice to use for moving projectiles, but u need alot of particles to make it look good, which will decrease performance on old comps, but at this age i think performance on wc3 isnt a problem anymore.
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 09-26-2006, 05:32 AM #9 JetFangInferno I Break Chopsticks   Project Member: PoC   Join Date: Feb 2004 Posts: 830 Submissions (71) darn it, i dont have 3dmax or art tools -_- and gmax is a pain in the ass! __________________ "My mom never saw the irony of calling me a son of a beotch" Rep me if u like my sig. Rep me again if you like my models. Rep me again if you like me :D
 10-18-2006, 06:42 PM #10 ArchWorm User     Join Date: May 2006 Posts: 249 Daelin what do you think about merging of these two methods? __________________ Nuclear Arbitor: this is ur map so if u don't like what ppl say ignore them and make it any way. they'll laugh in ur face and tell u it still sucks afterwards if they don't like it but they're not making it.
 10-19-2006, 01:50 PM #11 Daelin Kelani Mage     Join Date: Oct 2003 Posts: 737 Submissions (48) Never tried it... if you want, you are welcomed to try. You could get something interesting I guess. Special effects are not limited to a method or another. ~Daelin __________________ I am Grand Magister Daelin Silverwing not Grand Admiral Daelin Proudmoore!!!