James Little member of FX team of POLIS film has confirmed Pulldownit plugin was used for the destruction of the combat bot , POLIS teaser is a Vimeo “Staff Pick” and has won several awards,
James kindly explains several details about how this effect was done
Using PDI allowed me to quickly visualize the shot and iterate in a timely manner . It’s speed and accuracy with collisions is a very powerful feature in pulldownit.
I actually did the simulation in three stages to get the look and feel I
wanted. I used PDI’s awesome rbd engine to sim the major armor panels on
the robot as straight rbd’s with no fracturing, as metal isn’t so brittle
that it would shatter at room temperature.
After I got a motion I liked I baked out the geo. I then selected a bunch
of key pieces inside the droids innards that would create interesting and
unique silhouettes when they are ripped out of the body cavity and set them
up as rbd objects.
I then used the earlier baked sim to be passive colliders to drive the new
PDI sim. I wanted a richer feel to the effect so you see shapes more like
nut’s bolts, and wires coming from his insides.
After that step was done, I cached out that sim as well and used the
resulting cached geo as a passive collider yet again to actually fracture
random pieces inside so you get irregular shapes filling up the explosion
cavity and adding overall materia/mass to the effect.
This workflow is very friendly for getting the exact look you want, as you
can preserve the parts of the sim you like and then focus on a single
aspect of the effect at a time to get the desired end result. It’s also
much easier to sim when only one layer is calculating at a time.
After the PDI sims were done and cached, I emitted instanced nParticles to
make up the extremely fine particulate material that would not be suitable
for an rbd sim. I then used the nParticles to emit Maya fluids to create
the dust cloud.
I really enjoyed doing this shot and using PDI really made the task much
easier and manageable.
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