I have some objects (lamps, meshes) parented to an empty. I want to fire them from a specific location as a missile. (make a copy of them there.) In bge, this is pretty simple with the 'Add Object' actuator, but I want to do it in animation. Is there a clever way, using animation nodes and/or direct python, or should I manually keyframe the missile to appear in the right frame, depart, appear in the next firing frame... I have tried 'instancer node', but it added all the copies at the frame, when it was first executed, add didn't copy the parented objects, just the empty.
to instance a full hierarchy of objects the easiest way is to group them, add as a dupligroup on some layer and use this object as the AN instancer object -need to activate 'copy full object'-
you can animate the number of instances, so new objects appear on new frames, or you can have all there at the first frame and animate them scaling from zero...
to add more animation the easiest way would be generate it from AN, something simple and parametric, or have some cyclic animation in the objects... if you need to sync it to start time for each object it can be done also, but it's more complex
here's a test scene (AN 1.6) with some simple objects, made 100 instances of a dupligroup, then use a loop and a couple of delay nodes to first scale them, and then animate in random directions, the trick is to use instance index as seed and delay factor -the usual procedure with loops-