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This tutorial will show you how to create a simple star particle effect based on one of the default particle systems to introduce you to the Particle Editor. Make sure you checked out the basic guides for the Editor and Scene Wallpaper as well.

Create a New Particle Effect

Tutorial blinking stars add preset.png

Click on add in the lower left to add a new particle effect.

Tutorial blinking stars add particles.png

Select Particle System and choose the option basic on the right. Name the new effect Stars to find it more easily in case you will add multiple effects. Click OK to create the particle effect.

Tutorial blinking stars edit effect.png

With the new effect selected, click on edit on the right. This will open the Particle Editor.

Modify the Effect

We will now modify the Particle Emitters, Particle Initializers and Particle Operators of this effect to make it look and behave the way we want. The goal is to cover the wallpaper with small blinking particles that resemble a starry sky.

Tutorial blinking stars remove sphere emitter.png

First, remove the existing Particle Emitter Sphere Random by clicking on the red X next to it. Then click the green + next to the emitter list and add a Particle Emitter Box Random instead. Being a box, it will cover the square wallpaper better.

Tutorial blinking stars edit box random.png

Select the box emitter and change its settings as follow:

  • Rate: 40
  • Distance max: 1000, 500, 0

This will make it spawn more particles and cover an area about the size of a 1080p wallpaper. The maximum distance from the center towards left and right is 1000 (so a combined area of 2000) and the maximum distance towards top and bottom is 500 (so combined 1000).

Tutorial blinking stars edit lifetime.png

Select Particle Initializer Lifetime Random and change:

  • Min: 4
  • Max: 8

This will make every particle appear for at least 4 seconds and max 8 seconds.

Tutorial blinking stars edit size.png

Select Particle Initializer Size Random and change:

  • Min: 5
  • Max: 10

This will make the particles a lot smaller.

Tutorial blinking stars remove velocity.png

To prevent the stars from moving, delete the Particle Initializer Velocity Random and Particle Operator Movement by clicking on the red X next to them.

Tutorial blinking stars alpha fade settings.png

Select the existing Particle Operator Alpha Fade and change:

  • Min: 0.1
  • Max: 0.9

This means the particles will appear translucent over all. They will fade in for 10% of their lifetime and fade out from 10% of their lifetime.

Tutorial blinking stars add oscillate.png

Finally, add a Particle Operator Oscillate Alpha by clicking on the green + next to the operators.

Tutorial blinking stars oscillate settings.png

By default, the oscillation is quite strong. Change the following to reduce it a bit:

  • Frequency max: 3
  • Scale min: 0.2


💡 Pro tip: You can also easily modify the color with the existing Particle Initializer Color Random

Result

Tutorial blinking stars result.gif

A subtle star shimmer that works well with any sky wallpaper.

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