Star Trek Phaser Test

RossTrowbridge
RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
edited August 2011 in Practical Filmmaking
Here is a test to recreate the ship's phasers coming from a Starship. I used Neon Glow, Light Rays, and Light Flares on a masked plane to get this effect. I still need to introduce a little noise in the beam at some point.

Photon torpedoes will be easy. Now I just need to tweak a muzzle flash like I did in VisionLab to get a shield hit effect.

Comments

  • DanielMorgan
    DanielMorgan Website User Posts: 324 Just Starting Out
    I actually quite liked that. I think you should add sound to it , just to add that extra bit of depth.
  • VisionTestLab
    VisionTestLab Website User Posts: 72
    That was very interesting (if you don't mind me saying).
    I just wish that I had Hitfilm so I could create those kind of effects
    :(
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
    edited August 2011

    I actually quite liked that. I think you should add sound to it , just to add that extra bit of depth.
    It will get sound at some point. This shot was set up quickly and I didn't give myself an angle to do the torpedo launch as well. It has been too long since I did a full-length space battle (You can find it on my Youtube page). Now that I have better tools, I need to get serious and do it again.
  • guitar74
    guitar74 Website User Posts: 506
    The laser needs to be a little bigger, that ship in the star trek movies was when it fired it was not a real bright red. Still good!
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
    Okay, I updated it a bit. I changed the color and added some Flicker to the beam, which I think helps sell the effect. And just for Daniboy, I added sound. I like the current beam size, so it didn't get changed.

    Thanks for the input!
  • SaiTurtlesninjaNX
    SaiTurtlesninjaNX Website User Posts: 76
    I'm a hard cord Star Trek fan. The NX in my used name came from the NX-01 Enterprise.
    You should at a little lightning or textuer in the center of the beam like how been doing it for the past 15 years or so. I chould be worng.
    A Phaser is a Particle base weapon not a laser weapon.
    [img]http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20051221034624/memoryalpha/en/images/e/e1/Phase_cannon_firing_(close_up)-ShockwaveII.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20060805052033/memoryalpha/en/images/4/4c/Phase_cannons2.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/sci-fi-6.jpg[/img]
    [img]http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20080912151405/memoryalpha/en/images/e/ea/Akira_and_Defiants_fire,_Message_in_a_Bottle.jpg[/img]
  • VisionTestLab
    VisionTestLab Website User Posts: 72
    Wo there NX! nice pic you have!!!
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast

    I'm a hard cord Star Trek fan. The NX in my used name came from the NX-01 Enterprise.
    You should at a little lightning or textuer in the center of the beam like how been doing it for the past 15 years or so. I chould be worng.
    A Phaser is a Particle base weapon not a laser weapon.
    I've played around using the lightning generator, but haven't been happy with the results. Having a start and end point would be easier than what I have done with this test. This was actually done with a plane like I would do a lightsaber (four point mask). I've played around with adding clouds to mottle the beam, but haven't found a look I like yet. I would like to see a good fractal noise generator that I could slap on a plane or lightning bolt. I think that would help me get the look I'm after.
    I'm not going to post a 3rd work-in-progress, but I really upped the flicker setting and it did help. It helped, but it's still not where I want it to be. I have used the color and size randomizers in VisionLab to get a better effect. I'm still trying to get that look in Hitfilm.
    thanks for the feedback.
  • RodyPolis
    RodyPolis Website User Posts: 613
    You should try using the Particle Simulator, except instead of having it at 'random', have it at 'target' that way it's a straight line. I bet that'll give you the look you want.
  • Froi
    Froi Website User Posts: 966

    That was very interesting (if you don't mind me saying).
    I just wish that I had Hitfilm so I could create those kind of effects
    :(
    If you have visonlab, you should be able to do effects like that, using neon, but that means that you have to hand draw it to the points you want, instead of motion tracking, that's the stuff I do :)
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast

    You should try using the Particle Simulator, except instead of having it at 'random', have it at 'target' that way it's a straight line. I bet that'll give you the look you want.
    I've thought about particles, but haven't tried them yet. I'll have to give that a try.
    thanks.
  • guitar74
    guitar74 Website User Posts: 506
    Close and I never thought about that being a particle weapon. Makes you wonder how Star Trek did that in the last decade..
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
    edited August 2011
    Well the particles do give a good look. The problem is that it brings my GeForce Go 7600 to its knees trying to render this out. I also need to increase the emitter speed, which will require more particles per second to keep the look.
    I'll probably stay with my heavy flicker plane for now and then switch to this once I get a planned new laptop at the first of the year.

    The slight droop is because the emitter speed is too slow. I also didn't lock the particles to the emitter, so they continue on their original path when I moved the target.
    It's too bad that the target can't be a point. I had to change the coordinates for the target manually.
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast

    That was very interesting (if you don't mind me saying).
    I just wish that I had Hitfilm so I could create those kind of effects
    :(

    VisionTestLab,
    This animation was done using VisionLab studio...

    All the weapons and the shield hits are VisionLab effects. The shield hits began their life as a muzzle flash. :D
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
    Okay, it wasn't quite as painful for my GPU as I thought it would be. Cutting the particle lifetime down to 0.4 seconds (so they shut off just off screen) helped quite a bit. It does look much better. There is still some fine tuning to do. I need to add a grade layer to light up portions of the ship when the phaser is firing. But overall, I'm happy with it.
  • SimonKJones
    SimonKJones Moderator Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 4,450 Enthusiast
    edited August 2011
    Very cool! I think some lighting on the ship's underside would make a big difference to the quality of the effect, so I hope you get time to do that. :)
    How did you do the ship itself?
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast

    Very cool! I think some lighting on the ship's underside would make a big difference to the quality of the effect, so I hope you get time to do that. :)
    How did you do the ship itself?
    Simon,
    I'm glad you like it. I agree that I need to add some lighting to complete the effect. Whether I do this in EIAS or add a grade layer with masking remains to be seen. This was meant to get the phaser beam looking the way I wanted it to, so lighting wasn't much of a factor.
    The animation itself was done using Electric Image Animation System (EIAS). It is a 3D rendering program that has been around for a very long time. It was used in Star Wars Episode 1 among many other movies and TV shows, though Maya has pushed it out of the limelight. www.eias3d.com is their website. They are about to release version 9. The atmospheric lighting (is that an appropriate term for a space scene) consisted of a spot light for highlights and a simple HDR image for global illumination.
    The starfield is an actual image of the Milky Way that I reversed and removed many of the most recognized constellations. I can still pick out quite a few though. This shot happens to stop directly on Pegasus (the four main stars make a square at the center of the screen). I can also see Delphinus, Aquila, Cygnus, Pisces, and Sagitta quite easily.
  • RossTrowbridge
    RossTrowbridge Website User Posts: 423 Enthusiast
    Okay, this should be the final version of this test. I duplicated the animation and created masks for the areas to be lit. I added color correction wheels to give the masks an orange tinge to match the phaser. I then feathered the edges to blend the lighted area back into the rest of the ship.

    I think this gets me close enough to where I want this effect to be. Thank you to everyone who helped me get this to where it's at. Now I just have to sit down and put a full animated story together...
  • MatthiasClaflin
    MatthiasClaflin Website User Posts: 674 Just Starting Out
    Wow! Looks great to me! Nice work.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!