Wednesday, July 25th, 2012 Posted by Jim Thacker

Preview: thinkingParticles 6 and thinkingParticles GE

A shot from Final Destination 5, simulated in thinkingParticles by VFX artist Jonathan Mitchell. Developer cebas is currently working on new fluid and cloth simulation tools for the upcoming thinkingParticles 6.

It’s less than a month since cebas released thinkingParticles 5, but the developer has already begun talking about the next update to its increasingly more-than-just-particles plugin for 3ds Max.

New fluid and cloth simulations
ThinkingParticles 6, which is due to go on show at Siggraph 2012, will be “one-stop solution for special effects work”, adding fluid and soft body solvers to the existing particles, rigid bodies and spline rope systems.

Cebas’s pre-Siggraph announcement doesn’t go into a lot of detail, but mentions liquid simulations – and, interestingly, phase changes from oil to ice, suggesting the implementation can handle a range of physical phenomena – plus cloth and soft body deformation.

ThinkingParticles for games engines
Cebas is also working on thinkingParticles GE, a version of thinkingParticles optimised for game engines, which it describes as a “true disruptive technology”, enabling indie developers to use Hollywood-quality particle effects.

ThinkingParticles will initially be released for Unity, with CryEngine and Unreal versions to follow.

Updates to finalRender 4GPU
The developer will also be showing updates to its work-in-progress GPU renderer, finalRender 4GPU, which it demoed at Siggraph 2011.

As well as the link below, you can find more information about its new Physically Based Microfacet Model for blurry surfaces (think frosted glass) on the cebas website.

Read cebas’s full announcement (thinkingParticles 6, thinkingParticles GE and finalRender 4GPU)