NOTE: This functionality has been deprecated for HeroCloud users. We apologize for the confusion with the Physics Joints UI still being in place in the HeroCloud editor. The amount of overhead and server customization to make use of client to server PhysX systems like this and cloth simulation is too high and too complicated to be used without access to Source Code.
Physics joints work in a somewhat similar fashion to using the Parenting toolbar, but with some important differences. In general, DYNAMIC nodes should never be parented via the Parenting toolbar, as this can cause some unpredictable results. Better is to link them with a Physics joint node.
- In the Physics panel select the checkbox "Visualize Physics Data"
- In the Filters menu, ensure that the "Physics" category is turned on for both visibility and selectability
- Create two DYNAMIC physics-enabled nodes (if not sure how to do this, work through one of the other tutorials at Physics tutorials)
- Select both nodes, either by dragging or Ctrl-clicking
- Click on the red Physics Joint icon in the Physics Toolbar
- A Physics Joint node should appear between the two objects, along with a line connecting them.
- Open the Properties panel and examine the properties of the Physics Joint Node
- The GUIDs of the two nodes will be visible in the jointo and joinfrom fields
- Clicking on either of the two objects and moving it back and forth with the Select & Translate Tool, should move both objects at once. However, there is a subtle difference between moving the "jointo" or "joinfrom" object
- Moving the "joinfrom" object will move both objects together
- Moving the "jointo" object will "drag" the second object. This can be seen by moving the "jointo" object back and forth rapidly, which will cause the "joinfrom" object to bounce a bit
- With the "jointo" object selected, clicking the PAGE DOWN key will select the Physics Joint Node, and then clicking PAGE UP will select the "jointo" object again (this is similar to how things work with parented objects)
- Select one of the connected nodes
- Duplicate it with CTRL-D, and move the new node a short distance away
- Select both the new node and one of the previous connected nodes
- Click on the Physics Joint icon to connect the two nodes. You should now have a chain of three nodes
- Move one of the three, and note how the other two nodes move. Try this also by moving via the center node, or the node at the other end of the chain.
- Try moving one of the nodes below the heightmap, and note how the others react. Do the same with other nodes. If dragging a "jointo" node, the other node should be blocked by the heightmap. If moving a "joinfrom" node, both nodes should move through the heightmap without a problem.
- Add a few more nodes to the chain, and again, try moving one node rapidly back and forth and observe how the other nodes move in response.
- Add other nodes in the chain that are not in line with the existing chain, but at a right angle.
- Lift the chain into the sky, drop it
- Create some "bumpy" terrain via the Terrain panel
- Lift and drop your chain over the new hills, and observe how the connected objects move.
- Lift the chain into the sky, rotate it with the Rotation Tool, and drop it again
- Tip: Once the Select & Translate Tool or some other tool on the Transform Toolbar is chosen, you can use the mouse wheel to quickly cycle through different tools.
- Select each node in the chain in turn, and press PAGE DOWN. Note that if a node is the "jointo" node for multiple physics nodes, all of them will be highlighted when pressing PAGE DOWN. However, if the node is "joinfrom" for all of them, none will be highlighted. This is one quick way to tell if a node is a "jointo" or "joinfrom" node for various joint nodes.
- To swap a node's to/from status, go to the properties panel for the joint node, and simply swap the ID numbers in the jointo and joinfrom fields
There are many effects that can be created with connected physics nodes, so go ahead and experiment! For example, try connecting multiple dynamic nodes together, where one is in the center and acts as a hub to several other nodes, and then observe how it interacts with the terrain when you lift, rotate, and drop it.
- The nodes being connected must be set to DYNAMIC in their PhysicsType. Trying to connect STATIC nodes can cause unpredictable results
For more information on how physics joint nodes work, and their various properties, see the Novadex PhysX SDK documentation at: