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Particle Scale/Color Over Time Problems
OK, I updated to AB 4.2.2 but it did not solve the scale/color over time problems I'm having in AB.

I'm trying to do a fire/smoke setup like the AB Tut3 tutorial.

If I do the AB Tut3 tutorial regarding the explode daemon, all works as expected... the particles grow from small to large over their lifetime. Likewise, the color changes over the lifetime from fire to smoke (orange to black).

But in my actual scene setup, (if I turn on the 'Show in Viewport' button) and scroll through the animation... the particles never seem to change size. Also regarding changing color, when copying the exact steps that were used in Tut3, the particles never switch to orange early in life to black late in life.

These are not exotic setups at all... at this point, I am just mimicing the steps used in Tut3.

(I am trying to make a simplified scene that shows my problems but haven't had success yet as when I do a 'Save Selected' from the actual scene, the resulting scene has a wacked PFlow setup... trying to get this sorted).

Any idea what I'm doing wrong when trying to mimic Tut3?


Mike Truly
OK, so I tried deleting the AB from the Environment dialog and then re-creating the AB.

I picked the desired PFSOURCE and then a new dialog popped up asking me to pick from a list of events. (The dialog is so small, that I can't tell which events I am picking as the event names are cropped within the small window). But the 'Pick From Events' popup is new to me.

So making a little progress!


Mike Truly
Attached is a screengrab showing the AB particles not changing size.

Particle Size AFC is enabled and ranging from 4 to 40... but no change to displayed size.

Could you please post a scene without geometry so that we can a look at it?

Thank you.

Kresimir Tkalcec
Attached is a MAX2014 file showing the problem. The particle size doesn't seem to change over time. Also, the color over time is not showing the smoke plume as going from orange to black over the life of the particles.

*NOTE: my project scenes typically cover a very large area (many miles) and sometimes have many thousands of animation frames (this project's animation is setup from 1-16000 frames).

I'm sure it's something I'm doing wrong.

Thanks for looking at this!

Mike Truly

You should pick particles from the Event 005.
Picking the whole system seems to cause PF to look into the first event only and thus not picking up the particle age (Delete Particles) from Event 006.
For AFCs to work, AfterBurn has to get the particle age from the system (Delete Particle event.

I hope this helps.

Kresimir Tkalcec

Thanks for looking into this!

Re: Picking Events

Attached is a screegrab of the pick event dialog. I can't tell which event is 005 as the dialog is so small. Likewise, after picking the event, I can't tell which event has been picked as the particles dialog also is small and crops the full name.

(For a future update, it would be good to have the pick event dialog be larger or resizable. Also it would be good to have tooltips that show the particles name pop up when hovering over the particles dialog).

Re: Picking Event005

I renamed the PFSOURCE to a shorter name so I could see which event I was picking in the dialogs. I picked Event 005... it made no difference.

After picking Event005... when the Size-Sphere Radius AFC is set to go from small to large (1 to 10) and the AFC is enabled, the first (birth) frame of the particles shows a single particle/puff at radius 1. The next frame (and all later frames) show the particle/puff at radius 10. When the AFC is disabled, all the particles show as radius 1. The particle lifespan is 30 frames... it is jumping from 1 to 10 in one frame instead of 30 frames.

I must be doing something wrong. Do you have a modified version of the file I sent you that works?

Thanks again.
OK, I just did a test from scratch. I created a new scene in MAX2014 with just some particles, an age test & a delete event.

Event002 (delete particles)

In AB, if I select the PFSOURCE... (which I think is what I've always done in the past and has worked), the AB particles render but the particles do not scale over time even though the sphere radius AFC is enabled 10-100.

If I select the Event001 (where the age test is), the particles do exactly as the other scenes... birth frame shows a particle of radius 10 then next frame and all other frames show particles of radius 100. (It is not gradually changing the radius from 10 to 100 over time). Also, no AB particles render if I choose Event001.

Not sure why this isn't working.

OK, I got it sorted... but it seems like a bug.

The simple PFlow setup of having an Age Test in Event001 which sends out to a Delete in a separate Event002 seems like it should work... but it is not working for me at all.

But, if I instead add a Delete to Event001 which deletes based on Particle Age... it works properly. The puffs grow in size from start to end as desired and the color also changes over time properly.

See the attached image.

Shouldn't the separate event method work also?


I guess I did something else so made it work and now it does not wan't to work anymore.
As your original scene was, it should work that way.
I will look into this (the picking dialog is already wider), but having a delete operator withing the picked event will work.

Thank you

Kresimir Tkalcec

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