Create a Particle Light

Describes how you can create light within your particle system.

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Prerequisite Topics

This page assumes you have prior knowledge of the following topics. Please read them before proceeding.

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When you give particles the ability to illuminate the world around them, it can add an extra layer of realism to any of your project's visual effects. In the following how-to, we will take a look at setting up a Niagara emitter so that particles and lights are spawned at the same time.

Steps

  1. First, create a Niagara Emitter by right-clicking in the Content Browser and select FX > Niagara Emitter. The Niagara Emitter wizard displays.

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  2. Click the radio button next to Create a new emitter from an emitter template. Select the Fountain template, then click OK to create a new emitter in the Content Browser.

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  3. Name the newly created Niagara Emitter, FX_Light and double-click to open it.

    PL_01.png

  4. With the Niagara Editor now open, go to the Selected Emitter panel and locate the Render section.

  5. Click the Plus sign icon (+) next to Render and select the Niagara Light Renderer Properties option.

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  6. Locate the new NiagaraLightRendererProperties section at the bottom of the Render module. Set the following properties to the following values.

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    Property Name

    Value

    Use Inverse Squared Falloff

    Unchecked

    When Use Inverse Squared Falloff is disabled, Linear Falloff is used. Using Inverse Squared Falloff creates a more realistic light effect; however, for the purposes of this how-to we are going to use Linear Falloff so that the light is easier to see.

    Radius Scale

    2.0

    Color Add

    X: 10 Y: 0 Z: 0

    Color Add settings for X, Y, and Z actually correspond to the R, G, and B color channels. To change the color of the light, you can modify these settings.

  7. Click the Compile, Apply and Save buttons to compile and save your work. Then close the FX_Light Niagara Emitter.

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  8. Now right-click in the Content Browser, and select FX > Niagara System. The Niagara System wizard displays.

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  9. Click the radio button next to Create an empty system with no emitters. Click OK to create a new Niagara System in the Content Browser.

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  10. Name the new Niagara System ParticleLight.

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  11. Double-click the ParticleLight Niagara System to open it, and then drag the FX_Light Niagara Emitter to the Timeline of the Particle Light Niagara System.

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    Instead of steps 8-11, you can also right-click on the Emitter in the Content Browser and select Create Niagara System. This creates a system based on the Emitter you selected, at which point you can name it and open it.

  12. Click the Compile and Save buttons to compile and save your work, then close the Particle Light Niagara System. In the Content Browser, drag the Mesh Niagara System into the level viewport.

    Click image for full size.

End Result

When the steps are completed, you have a visual effect that casts light into the level when the particles are spawned. You can see an example in the video below.

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