Let's say, I want to populate a parking lot with cars. Coming from Modo, I'd use replicators: -create an array of polygons, one for each parking space -create a group of cars -add a replicator item, that would place one car on every polygon and use the polygon's rotation to place the replica -I could do a random rotation in 180 degree increments, to get some randomness -I could also rotate polygons manually for more control -A percentage slider and seed value allowed me to control how full the parking lot was

Is there a way to do something similar in blender? I've come quite close with the hair system, but I can't figure out how to precisely control the Z rotation of individual hairs

Any pointers will be much appreciated. Thanks in advance

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    $\begingroup$ You might have better luck with dupligroups if you want manual control. If you use duplifaces you can control orientation, and iirc there is a tool to randomize face orientation $\endgroup$ – gandalf3 Apr 14 '17 at 20:03
  • $\begingroup$ cool! this works nicely, although I haven't been able to figure out the randomization part just yet. Is there also a way to do this controlled duplication with a group or a hierarchy, so that I don't have to merge the whole model before duplicating it? $\endgroup$ – ivan Apr 15 '17 at 9:45
  • $\begingroup$ I came close to getting something like that working with groups and mask modifiers, but I realized particles should allow this after all. $\endgroup$ – gandalf3 Apr 15 '17 at 19:56

Blender's particle system is.. weird. It's a more little old and probably could do with a refactor. Among other things, the axis are wrong.

However, that doesn't mean it can't be made to work:

  1. Switch to emission particles
  2. Enable rotation

    enter image description here

  3. Rotate your emitter polygons so that their surface normals are aligned with the +Y axis of the instance:

    enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ ah, this is cool! thanks! It's quite a shame the X axis gets ignored, but this does make my problem seem at least a bit closer to getting solved. Also... how do you update your particle sim after you exit the edit mode of the source surface? my particles didn't update until I changed their number... $\endgroup$ – ivan Apr 26 '17 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ @ivan Hm, I didn't do anything special.. Are you using blender 2.78? I've uploaded the .blend for you to test. $\endgroup$ – gandalf3 Apr 27 '17 at 0:17
  • $\begingroup$ thanks, works as expected in your file, I'll have to dissect my old file... if I can find it, to find the culprit. $\endgroup$ – ivan Apr 27 '17 at 12:56

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