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How to efficiently render a squishy ball of twinkling lights

I couldn’t find a single sub-forum that this fit in, so I’ll post it here.

I’m new to UE and am not an expert in graphics pipelines in general, but I have a general understanding of things. I’ll explain what I would do if I were working in straight opengl, and ask you to tell me what the right/best/most elegant/clean way to do the equivalent in UE.

  1. Generate a static set of points (relative to the center of the item) throughout a spherical region with each assigned color data and put that in a vertex buffer or something like that. Maybe 1000 points. Maybe more or less depending on how complex the shader in #3 is and how it can be made to look that way. This data doesn’t ever change and so could be created statically at design time.
  2. Create a shader that somehow receives the acceleration vector of the item (which may change often), and moves each point a little bit opposite the acceleration vector proportional to its distance from the center of the item.
  3. Create a shader that given a point, some game parameters (that change over time), and an animation ticker, it will transform the points to be emissive, or change colors or whatever using some straightforward math.

Then render that set of points using those shaders and move around the whole thing as a single item in the game world.

In short, I want a squishy ball of twinkling lights.

The item would also be a light source, but I assume that can be done completely separately by putting a light source in the world and keep it at the same location as the item.

What would be the best approach to do this in UE?

p.s. I’d be willing to pay someone to implement this for me: PM me if interested.