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Covering a topic as broad as water is a serious task. We have decided to take a step-by-step approach of continuous updates instead of trying to tackle everything at once. The initial aquatiq release is therefore dedicated to 2D modular effects that provide a quick and optimized solution for animated water in Blender scenes. These were done mostly using Blender’s particle system and procedural tools of Substance Designer.
Unlike water simulations that take a lot of time to calculate and are harder to control, 2D modular effects, although less realistic, are ready instantaneously the moment you spawn them into your scene and you can edit them as you go. The greatest advantage of this approach is looping. All effects are sequences of 30 frames that repeat endlessly, meaning you only need to render 30 frames. Then you can repeat the rendered output instead of simulating 100s of frames and caching large files.
We want to give both artistic freedom for those who like to play around and ready-made assets for professionals who do not have time to spare. That’s why we divided the assets into three categories. Fountains - selection of assets ready to be linked to a scene, Modular - what we internally call ‘Lego’ - sets of matching effects that can be used to assemble custom water features and Effects - the core of this aquatiq release, simple planes with the animation sequences, that can be played in viewport in real-time.
Aquatiq also comes with its older sibling ‘Waterial’ - collection of animated water materials with highly customizable nodegroups, low memory requirements, and much less performance-intensive than simulations.
As a bonus, there's a ready-to-render Ocean Shore scene included with complementary assets such as rocks and palms and materials such as beach sand.
What’s coming next? There are a lot of possibilities and we want to listen to the community. Once we gather feedback we will start planning the next expansion, be it high poly waterfall meshes frozen in time, pre-made simulation templates, or procedural rivers…