Learn how to create a procedural house that is set up in support of a destruction shot. To make the house procedural, the node network is carefully constructed to ensure that everything will update if the basic shape or the height of the house changes. You will build individual bricks that can be destroyed later and windows and doors will be set up with frames and panes of glass. The network will organize the bits and pieces then add names and groups to provide a foundation for the fracturing of the house down the line. This is a very detailed lesson that explores each concept thoroughly.


A quick introduction to the topics being covered in this tutorial. You can take a look at the final model and see the network that will be used to create it.

Length: 00:26

1 | Define the Basic Shape

Create the basic shape of the house using individual bricks that are copied to points, aligned then staggered to create the expected pattern. At the end you will tidy up the network to get ready for future steps.

Length: 22:21

2 | Cut Out the Roof

Create a simple model of a house with a peaked roof which can then be intersected with the bricks using a boolean. At first this doesn't give the desired result but after using a for-each loop and compile blocks to boolean each brick individually, you will get the clean geometry you need for destruction down the line.

Length: 15:09

3 | Cut Out the Windows & Door

Create a system for positioning the windows and door against the basic shape of the house then use the same for-each loop technique to cut them from the bricks.

Length: 20:13

4 | Add Stone Bricks

Give your bricks a stone look by converting them to VDBs then using an attribute VOP to agitate the points on the surface of each brick. You will also set up UVs to prepare for texturing the geometry.

Length: 13:27

5 | Create Window Frames & Pane

Using the shapes created to cut out the windows, you will build frames and then window panes that fit perfectly. These will procedurally update if you change the house, or if you reposition or resize the openings.

Length: 30:49

6 | Create the Door & Door Frame

The technique used for the windows will be used to generate the door frame and then a door made up of planks. These elements will also be set up with UVs for texturing.

Length: 22:36

7 | Add Roof Tiles

Since the angle of the roof might change, special techniques are used to extract lines for copying the tiles and then to properly orient and place them on the roof. Ridge tiles are then built for the roof peak and all of the elements grouped and organized for adding materials and destruction.

Length: 47:30


Once you have the house, you can move on to the Destruction FX shot to fracture up the parts and destroy the building with RBD and Pyro FX. You may find it a bit more fun to destroy the house compared to building it.



Mark Spevick is the Head of 3D at Escape Studios, Pearson College London, and combines teaching with working at the highest level in the industry. He has 10 years working in industry and 6 working in higher education and teaching. He got his big break at Peerless Camera, the production house co-owned by Terry Gilliam, and worked on every Gilliam film from ‘Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas’ to ‘The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus’, starring the late Heath Ledger. He also worked with director Martin Campbell on ‘Zorro’ and ‘Mask of Zorro’ before supervising on the set of ‘Casino Royale’. Mark also managed the CG team that worked on the parachute scene in ‘Angels and Demons’, on behalf of post-house Double Negative. Mark was heavily involved in the design and development of our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

More from Mark Spevick


  • Petty 2 years, 2 months ago  | 

    Great tut, thanks. As a newbie this is gold :)

    • spoonvfx 2 years, 2 months ago  | 

      That's great...pleased that it helps you.

  • MULK 2 years, 1 month ago  | 

    As a Technical artist moving to Houdini from Max/Maya, I found this very helpful. It was well explained, but a couple of things threw me, but I was able to go back and fix them in the nodes, which was a great ability.

  • melong8608 2 years, 1 month ago  | 

    this is an amazing tutorial. thank you so much

  • Alvaro G. Perez 2 years ago  | 

    Thanks a lot, Mark, for this amazing tutorial. I've learned a lot with it.

    When following the tutorial, in part 05 "Create Window Frames & Pane", for the windows' glass panning, I have avoid the Foreach node (and all nodes in its bubble), to optimize a bit, by replacing all content in its bubble by an Attribute Wrangle node with the following content, and setting the value 0.131 in the Translate_Size channel created:

    float epsilon = 0.000005;
    float translate_size = ch("Translate_Size");

    if (abs(v@Nswitch.x) > epsilon)
    @P.x += translate_size * v@Nswitch.x;

    if (abs(v@Nswitch.z) > epsilon)
    @P.z += translate_size * v@Nswitch.z;

  • spev 2 years ago  | 

    Absolutely right..Great alternative. Will certainly help

  • DylanLaw1350 1 year, 11 months ago  | 

    i appreciated this very much, but for this projcect in particular, is it possible to randomise UV textures per brick? i have spent a while trying to make each bricks texture different to the last, but am having no success. any links to how this will be solved for this particular project would be greatly appreciated.

    • NagaPavan 1 year, 9 months ago  | 

      may be use uvtransform sop inside the for each after the uvunwrap and
      use the detail iteration attribfrom for each meta data node to get the variations (need to get through the spare parm to not break the compile) or
      create an i@uv_ramdom= @class (connectivity sop to get class attrib) before for loop and so with point attrib it can be varied again get through the spare parm to not break the compile

      • NagaPavan 1 year, 9 months ago  | 

        i@uv_ramdom= fit01(rand(1.0*@class),0.1,1) or what ever output length variations u may needed

        • NagaPavan 1 year, 9 months ago  | 

          correction for the data type f@uv_random= fit01(rand(1.0*@class),0.1,1) or what ever output length variations u may needed

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