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Can you make particles orient towards/away from center of the emitter?

Hello, I want to emit some cone meshes like this in a circle around a particle emitter, so that they are all pointing away relative to the center of the emitter.


I have the cones located in a circle around the emitter, but can’t figure out how to orient them correctly.

Any ideas?

I’ve tried Screen Alignment: PSA Away From Center, but as the name suggests, this is relative to the center of the screen rather than the emitter itself.

Look for Emitter Normals Mode in the Default Required module. Spherical or Cylindrical might work, but it probably needs to use another module, and consist of 5 emitters, each of their Emitter Normals Mode set to Spherical or Cylindrical. The other module(s) to use may be Location and Rotation, and there’s also the Orbit module. Sounds tricky.

Default Required and Spawn Modules | Unreal Engine Documentation (scroll up to immediately above Spawn Module to read about the Emitter Normals Mode, which is in the Required Module).

Thank you for your reply.

I was under the impression from reading that description that the Emitter Normals Mode was only relevant for computing LOD (Level of Detail), not orientation in space?

At this point, I’ve decided to just create each “particle” as a short-lived actor and try to do it myself if there’s no simple answer.

I’m not sure how LODs work in emitters. LOD could be a more general term, not an auto-change of resolution / detail according to distance from camera. It’s hypothetically a workaround, not that I was claiming it would work with 100% certainty. It seems like such a facet of orienting meshes / particles in an emitter would have a module or far easier way to set it, even with various possibilities such as toward / away from center or at a certain angle from center / axes. What is the final thing going to be?

Yeah, I’m surprised there isn’t an obvious way to do it! Or maybe there is and someone else knows it. I’m working on a puzzle game where you place lights on a grid. The final thing is going to be some stylized “light rays” that briefly appear around a light when it’s placed. I’ve got a partial solution with actors now. It has just been more work than particles would have been, and feels like more of a hack.

So the workup is using meshes in an emitter? Type-data mesh? It could be easier in Niagara, though I don’t know because I haven’t tried learning Niagara at all.

I’m not sure what workup means in this context. If you mean my prototype, then yes I was using type-data mesh and couldn’t figure out how to orient them properly. Now I am just spawning actors with static mesh components and animating them how I want them to move before dying. I didn’t know Niagara was something I could use! I’ll look into it next time.

Workup is how you’re doing it so far, or the draft version of the particle system. It could be the final version too. Prototype is a synonym. I know I saw an option in Cascade that orients particles with reference to the object or emitter, and not the camera…but I don’t remember which module’s settings it’s in.

Hi, you can reach that result with mesh particles this way:

  1. Add a Cylinder and tick the “Velocity” property. Also put a Velocity Scale of 0.001 in case you dont want your mesh to move much, but you still want this method to work.
  2. In your mesh emittter, under “Required” module, choose Screen Alignment: “PSA Velocity”

This way your mesh will be oriented in the direction of the velocity, which is going outward from the center of the cylinder.

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