In this tutorial, I'll show how to create a Paintsplat projectile in Unreal Engine 4. I'll take you through the creation of Vertex Animation Texture splashes as well as creating a decal based on baking a FLIP splat. We will start with an empty Houdini scene and finish with a paintlaunching gun in engine!

There's a lot of content in here and if you are only interested in specific parts of the workflow, here are some convenient timecodes for you.

00:00 Creating a FLIPsplash
14:18 Rendering the Vertex Animation Texture
17:10 Building the VAT material
23:45 Making the material work with particles
26:25 Finishing the particle system
31:30 Setting up the projectile blueprint
33:20 Creating the decal textures
36:30 Baking the textures
39:14 Building the decal material
42:00 Finishing the projectile

There are 2 downloads for this tutorial.

One will have the .hip files for both the paintsplat and decal splat generator, as well as the related texture maps (5.6MB). 
The second download will contain the Unreal project file (807MB).

Software Builds Used

Houdini 16.5.314
Unreal Engine 4.19



Andreas has spent a third of his life as a VFX artist in the games industry working on games of all shapes and sizes. From gritty explosions in Battlefield 1 to whacky powerups in Disney Universe He recently realized that there is a despicable lack of educational material for realtime vfx so he decided to try and do something about it. In both his work and tutorials he strives to live by KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid). Finding simple solutions to hard problems has become an addiction and it's the reason he's neck deep in Houdini. He's currently freelancing for some of the biggest names in both games and VR.

More from Andreas Glad


  • kamikazemikey 4 年 前  | 

    This tutorial was awesome! However since Houdini 17 changes up how fluid source works (Got rid of it apparently) I have no idea how to go beyond that step that uses it and since I was looking for a beginner tutorial to follow, I have no idea of how to add velocity based on normals or how to combine all the other confusing nodes to get to the same point in the tutorial. Any chance anyone out there knows how to get things as to the point they are around 3mins into the video?

  • TurnerSpring 3 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

    Useful tutorial!

    Is there any way to change the location of the particle with a module using this method?

  • Valent 3 年, 2 ヶ月 前  | 

    @Partikel , Hi, Could you please reupload the revised version of the tutorial, with pyrosource, the old link is broken, thanks.

  • jorgelm23 3 年, 1 ヶ月 前  | 

    Dear ANDREAS GLAD, Is there a chance we can get an updated version of this tutorial. could not make it work in unreal, the material generated from the code is not the same as the video, and it wont work.

    • Partikel 3 年, 1 ヶ月 前  | 

      The new VAT node generates a material function and not a material. The new process is shown here:

  • reidstudio 3 年, 1 ヶ月 前  | 

    Where's the best resource for Houdini 18 VFX for UE4? It seems Houdini dramatically changes each version it's really difficult to find up to date references - a simple node change change be really hard to track when starting out in Houdini. I'd love to learn more about VAT and other system.

  • elder483 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

    Hi good tutorial so far, I'm using Houdini 18, and I can't actually export my effect properly. If it's not this error it just cant find a file to export it too for some reason.

    Error rendering child: /out/vertex_animation_textures1/render_mesh_fbx

    Just infuriating I've put in the work and now it just doesn't want to render it.

    Can anyone provide any guidance perhaps I need to save it elsewhere?

    • martinrocker 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

      Hi @elder483,

      See the project from Houdini 17 provided by @Patrikel, it loads just fine in Houdini 18:

      • elder483 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

        Hi yeah I have the project working fine. I've built it using that project as a reference I just can't export it to Unreal Engine 4

  • elder483 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

    Hi I am using Houdini apprentice and I'm having trouble with the export segment of this video I assume that's why I can't get it to work?

    Can anyone clarify this?

    From what I have read houdini apprentice essentially means you can create and make renders etc. but only within that software version it can't be used externally in UE4/unity etc?

    • Partikel 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

      Correct! Apprentice does not support exporting at all so you won't be able to continue past that step.

  • elder483 2 年, 11 ヶ月 前  | 

    Thank you I was getting so worked up thinking I've done something wrong! Hopefully that helps people in the future.

  • yanfyyy 2 年, 9 ヶ月 前  | 

    Thanks for the awesome tutorial!
    For some reason the Init Mesh Rotation module doesn't make the vertex animation rotate. It does rotate other mesh but not vertex animation. I'm using UE 4.24. What could possibly be the workaround?

    • yanfyyy 2 年, 9 ヶ月 前  | 

      It seems that it is not inheriting bot the particle's size and rotation.

Please log in to leave a comment.