Wednesday, September 15th, 2021 Posted by Jim Thacker

Maxon releases Trapcode Suite 17.1 for After Effects

Originally posted on 15 September 2021. Scroll down for news of the 17.l update.

Maxon has released Trapcode Suite 17, the latest version of its set of motion graphics and VFX plugins for After Effects, which it acquired following last year’s merger with original developer Red Giant.

The update makes it possible to use functionality from Form inside Particular, its sister plugin, and extends Particular’s particle flocking system to support predator-prey behaviours.

The news was announced at the 3D and Motion Design Show, alongside the public beta of Redshift RT and updates to other Maxon apps: Cinema 4D R25, VFX Suite 2, Magic Bullet Suite 15 and Universe 5.

New Form functionality within Particular unifies workflow for particle systems
The main change in Trapcode Suite 17 is the much-requested option to use functionality from two of its key plugins, Particular and Form, within the same 3D space.

Both create 3D particle systems, but whereas Particular creates organic-looking clouds of emitted particles with finite lifespans, Form creates regular arrays of immortal particles.

Particular 6, the latest version of the plugin, blurs that distinction, introducing two new emitter behaviours that create Form-like arrays of undying particles within Particular.

Classic Form mimics the look of tradional Form systems, with particles affected by fields and noises; Dynamic Form enables the particles to be affected by Particular physics simulations.

In addition, Particular’s old Grid emitter controls have been extended to applicable emitter types, providing a more Form-like workflow within the plugin.

Maxon has also made other functionality from Form available in Particular, bringing over “many familiar displacement-type features [like] Disperse and Twist” and particle symmetry system Kaleidospace.

All get new controls within Particular, with users now able to rotate the Twist axis, and to mirror particles on the Z axis as well as the X and Y axes.

New predator/prey interactions and team allegiances for particle flocking
The new particle flocking system introduced to Particular in Trapcode Suite 16 has also been updated, with new contact behaviours for predator and prey particles.

Contact between predator and prey can now result in the prey particle being killed, frozen or converted to a predator particle; or both predator and prey particle being killed.

In addition, both predator and prey particles can now be divided into up to four ‘teams’, like the space invaders in the image above, providing an extra layer of control over simulations.

Quality of life improvements
Other changes in Particular 6 include the option to multi-select and to rename particle systems within the Designer, making it easier to manage complex nested particle set-ups.

In addition, all the plugins within Trapcode Suite now support After Effects’ experimental new multi-frame rendering system, currently available in beta builds of the software.

Updated 10 November 2021: Maxon has released Trapcode Suite 17.1.

It’s a workflow and bugfix update, improving performance of fluid dynamics during longer renders, and streamlining the process of creating nulls.

Pricing and availability
Trapcode Suite 17.1 is available for After Effects CC 2019+ on Windows 10 and macOS 10.14+.

Maxon discontinued perpetual licences of Trapcode Suite with the release of version 17.0, so the software is now only available to rent via the Red Giant Complete and Maxon One subscription plans.

Read an overview of the new features in Trapcode Suite 17 on Maxon’s website

Read a full list of new features in Particular 6 within Trapcode Suite 17