Enhance your aquatic environments with the Fish School System V2, a sophisticated upgrade from the original, now harnessing the power of Unreal Engine’s Niagara A.I. This new iteration offers a range of advanced features such as object and player avoidance, improved performance, dynamic speed adjustment, and area confinement, ensuring a more interactive and realistic aquatic experience.
Additionally, we offer new, purchasable fish species packages that seamlessly integrate into the Fish School System V2, expanding your aquatic diversity.
The School System V.2 features object and player avoidance, which can be set in the details panel of each individual fish school. This is useful for having your fish swim away from the camera, or from a specific actor in your level such as a shark during a cinematic. Each fish school is paired with their own “Swimming Area Box”. The fish will try to avoid crossing over the edges of this box, which can help you customize which areas you want each fish school to swim in.
Aside from having Niagara particle collisions with static and dynamic objects, the System utilizes the “Destructible” collision channel to allow the player to pass through meshes without your fish passing throug them. Simply make sure your static meshes have the “Destructible” channel ticked, and your fish will collide with that object.
The system provides two options for animating your fish.
The Auto-Animation material nodes allow you to to effortlessly animate your fish Static Meshes—eliminating the need for manually animating your fish in external software. However, if you want to increase the quality of your animations, the system provides Vertex Animation support, which is a must-have for non-traditional aquatic creatures like stingrays or eels.
The package further contains a spline blueprint that instructs the A.I. to follow a predetermined path along the created spline. While guiding the A.I. school, this spline blueprint animates a target for them to follow but retains the object and player avoidance functionalities, ensuring dynamic and interactive movement.
The Fish School System V2 is primarily designed for larger areas of play such as the Ocean, or large lakes. It may have some issues with small or shallow waters.
IMPORTANT NOTE – Collision:
Although the collision support stops your fish from swimming past invisible or visible boundaries, Niagara still cannot operate with custom collision channels, so I have set the collision channel to the “Destructible” profile.
This may not be suitable for all projects, especially ones that require the destructible channel for gameplay.
Furthermore, you may encounter issues if your objects are less than 10cm thick.
IMPORTANT NOTE – Shallow Water:
The shallow water feature allows the fish to initially swim horizontally without travelling vertically, which is great for shallow waters. However, this feature has strong limitation: It must not have slanted collisions within the path of the particle – otherwise the bounce trajectory of the particle will not remain horizontal.