Building a Simple Particle System

Particle systems are used in computer graphics for drawing fuzzy-shaped objects such as fire, clouds, and trails of dust. The basic idea for such systems is drawing a large number of small, moving particles and controlling their motion.

Here we consider the basic principles of modeling and drawing particle systems and demonstrating them by building a simple 2D particle system. In this chapter, we will
cover the following topics:

  • The basics of particle systems
  • A single particle
  • An emitter
  • The attraction, repulsion, and spinning forces
  • Graphical user interface

By the end of this chapter, you will have a fully-featured project for experimenting with the particle system.

Codes for openFrameworks 0.9.8 (Windows/VS2015 C++ and Xcode/OSX): Download

Codes and executables for openFrameworks 0.074, (Windows/VS2010 C++): Download

Particle System with GUI

This example demonstrates the particle system with GUI.


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