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I am making an animation, and I need chunks of text that I've converted into a mesh to assemble from behind the camera's view. This is what needs to eventually come together:

Selected is what I want to have assemble

Any thoughts on how I should do this? I thought of having the explode modifier go in reverse, or use a particle system, but thought I could inquire of another way.

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  • $\begingroup$ Depends on the effect you are trying to achieve. If you want them to appear in sequence you could just change the visibility. If you want them to move together you could run a simulation of them falling or exploding then render the sequence in reverse to have them join together. $\endgroup$ – Ratt Nov 26 '18 at 1:00
  • $\begingroup$ @Ratt Yeah, I'm trying to make them kinda move into their positions as seen in the picture from different areas. I think I'll go with the exploding simulation. The triangles are a part of the mesh, so will the explode modifier break the triangles up? I'm hoping it will just MOVE the triangles, not break them. $\endgroup$ – Corbomite Nov 26 '18 at 1:08
  • $\begingroup$ It is not quite what you want but have a look at the build modifier as it works with faces. $\endgroup$ – rob Nov 26 '18 at 10:38
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Precondition

For this approach you will need the tiles as separate meshes (it doesn't appear to be your case).

To make an object into separate pieces (if they are already disconnected, but part of the same object), in Edit mode: select all the vertices (A), then P > "By loose parts". It's convenient to also select all the new meshes (that now share the same origin point) and do Object > Origin > Origin to center of mass.


Simple keyframed animation with a randomized starting point

  • Place your tiles in their final position.

    Go to the last frame of the animation, select all the tiles, set a keyframe (I > "Location")

    enter image description here

  • Go to the first frame.

    Move the object to their average starting position behind the camera.

    enter image description here

  • Hit Space for search (F3 in Blender 2.80), search "Randomize Transform".

    In the tool parameters, adjust the "Location" values, especially along the direction parallel to the camera orientation.

    Add a new keyframe (I > "Location")

    enter image description here

  • Done! Final result seen from the camera:

    enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ mine is a single object, not individual ones. Very helpful, though! How do you think I could do this with a single mesh? $\endgroup$ – Corbomite Nov 27 '18 at 0:07
  • $\begingroup$ in the precondition I explain how to $\endgroup$ – Nicola Sap Nov 27 '18 at 7:01
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Not the most sophisticated solution, but a decade ago I did something similar in an old Lightwave version before I switched to Blender. It was letters forming on a warp speed starfield with them flying in toward camera. I started with the word made of individual letter objects at the appropriate point then manually keyframed into the distance at the start frame adding movement up and down and sideways. Like I said, not very detailed or sophisticated but it worked for the logo. Hope that helps.

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Simpler Approach ... Particles with No Script.

enter image description here

  • My recommendation is two or more particles systems working at the same time for at least two reasons.

    • This will allow you to have more stylized control over your animation. You can avoid straight line animation with physics forces. Turbulence for example is available to you.

      enter image description here

      Particle System with some settings visible such as Emit From Faces. Image Above.

      enter image description here

      Particles with no turbulence. Image Above.

      enter image description here

      The particles with a small amount of turbulence force. Image Above.

    • I recommend at least two particle systems because there are two sets of triangles partitioned into ... left pointing and right pointing. So the triangle mesh can be the object for the render panel. So you might consider either

      • two meshes indicating the center of each triangle set
      • one mesh with two vertex groups indicating the center of each triangle set
    • Animate then view result in reverse.
    • Textures can affect birth time of the particles. Physics can affect movement. Note this proposed answer is not a tutorial about all the many features of particles including textures and physics.

Complex Approach ... Script

  • If Python is one your skills you could write a Python Script to animate you triangle meshes along multiple paths with Path Constraints. Your script would create keyframes along the path.

  • There are often multiple ways to achieve similar goals in Blender not mentioned here in detail. Thus any detailed discussion of BAN Blender Animation Nodes is omitted.

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