The base drone model is a skeletal mesh with two material slots, 10 bones and 4 sockets. It is located at “/Content/AssetCollection/AF_Ltd_objects/SK_Drone”. All Drone animations can be found in “Content/AssetCollection/AF_Ltd_objects/Animations/Drone” and all material vatiations in “Content/AssetCollection/AF_Ltd_objects/Materials/DroneMaterial/NewDroneMaterialVariations/Materials
There are two drone material variations for the drone body. The main one is “MI_DirtyDroneGreen” which is used by default. There is also an alternate variation in red “MI_DirtyDroneRed”.
The eye of the drone uses a different material slot and can be changed independantly from the rest. By default it uses a simple red emissive material.
There are a series of drone animations already in the project. Some of these are ‘full animations’ (i.e. they affect every bone and are designed to be used standalone), others are only partial in that they are made to be blended with others at the same time.
These can be controlled and combined with animation blueprints. Animation blueprints are a set of instructions desgined to move the skeletal mesh between different animations dependant on certain triggers. Below is a simple example of the animation blueprint for the timer drones.
Initially the drone is in an offline state. This sets the drone to use the ‘Anim_Drone_DropIn’ animation but with a play-rate of 0 so it doesn’t move.
For the drone to transition to the next state, a certain trigger must be met. Here, the boolean value ‘Begin’ must be true. This value can be changed by an external blueprint. In the case of the drone timer, when the player runs through the trigger volume, this value is set to true and the drone can transition to the ‘Enter’ animation state, dropping out of the sky.
Once the drone has progressed through a certain portion of the animation, it will transition to the idle state. The Crashed state here is a seperate option for adding timer drones that have already crashed on the ground (i.e. don’t show the dropping in animation) but still show the time.
The drone contains multiple sockets to attach particle effects to for blueprint actors. This might be too expensive for scenes with many drones planned on screen at once but is fine for less complex scenes.
The engine trail FX – to be attached in two instances to the sockets “EngineL” and “EngineR” – is a niagara system found in “/Content/AssetCollection/AF_Ltd_objects/Particles/FX_DroneEngineTrail”
The Drone Projector FX – to be attached to the “EyeInnerSocket” Socket – is a niagara system found in “/Content/AssetCollection/AF_Ltd_objects/Particles/FX_DroneProjector”