Maya has some pretty easy to use scene warping and retiming tools. What if you wanted to set up a bullet-time effect on a Bifrost simulation where the camera remains traveling at the same pace? Here, Autodesk’s Daryl Obert shows how to do just that.

A simple demo of how to re-time a Bifrost simulation.

There are a couple of ways that you can approach the bullet-time effect. One, and most obvious of them is to use Maya’s scene retiming tools. Although that may seem to be the most intuitive way. The issue with this approach, is that it will affect the entire scene, not just the Bifrost Simulation — and that includes the camera move. In this case we want the Bifrost sim to have the bullet-time effect and the camera to connote along its normal pace.

Creating a bullet-time effect for a bifrost sim, can be created by first getting the Bifrost sim as an alembic cache. You can turn meshing on for the simulation’s shape group, and it is this mesh that will be exported as the Alembic cache.

The key to doing this is by breaking the connection the cached Bifrost simulation has to the Maya Time Node. You are then free to connect the smitten to a function curve that you set up yourself by simply setting keyframes to the cache time attribute. Once you have keyframes, you have a curve that you can better control in the Maya Graph Editor.



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