Working on Real-Time Dissolution FX in UE4

Artur Ishmaev briefly talked about his dissolution effect experiments in Unreal and his personal experience with the engine.

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My name is Artur Ishmaev, but in all social networks, I go by the name Art Hiteca. I studied to be an architect. For some time, I was self-employed and engaged in parametric design. Now I work as a programmer at PIK technologies and create tools for automating the industry.

Learning UE4

I came across Niagara and UE4 2-3 years ago and immediately started sharing experiments on my YouTube channel. I really liked the concept of its particle system and GPU computing available there. This is my hobby outside of working hours, but I do not exclude that I can apply this knowledge in the framework of architectural design and programming.

Most of all, I like the user-friendly interface, which allows you to create a very interesting result at an early stage. The standard modules that are available allow you to create very cool behaviors, and if you go deeper into C++, the capabilities are simply impressive! This is an amazing tool.

I believe that UE4 is very accessible for self-studying. Studying it on your own will allow you not to cling to standard solutions, but to look for new ones. That's what I like a lot about UE4. I constantly watch video tutorials on YouTube and experiments on Twitter and try to share my own results.

Dissolution Effect Experiments: Goals

I have always been impressed by dissolution effects that are present in movies, and I really want to create a solution that could work in real-time. The most important goal I have outlined for myself is to achieve the most universal solution that would not require a lot of manipulations before launching in real-time. I believe I can achieve that. Creating this effect involves a lot of tools, and therefore, you have to learn a lot of areas of visual design to work on it.


When working on a dissolution effect, the main difficulty is the moment when the original object disappears and the particles appear. I have already studied several methods that include using SceneCapture2D, the StaticMesh interface, or the ProcedurallMesh component. Since I am going for a universal method, I think it's necessary to get rid of the randomization of particle materials and configure them for a specific object, so in the future, I might use GAN neural networks that allow calculating information in real-time. For example, a normal map, a dissolution animation, and so on.


To create the effect, I used static meshes, but I also experimented with a skeletal mesh. Some implementation methods allow you to apply them universally to any object.

Additional Effects

It is not difficult at all to create supplementary effects as they will only add a flair to the project and will not depend on the object being dissolved. Or they can be part of the dissolution process, which does not contradict the main implementation of the method. They will be one of the variations of particle rendering.

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Compatibility with Games

Such effects can be implemented in a game, but with some loss of realism and the number of particles. But you can find a balance.

Artur Ishmaev, VFX Artist

Interview conducted by Arti Sergeev

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