The first tutorial I went through the basics of rings and sprays. In the beam tutorial were going to delve into beams and combos. Our final product will hopefully resemble something like this:
Load up the FX Tool, Select "File", "New", and select "Beam" The first thing we need to do is make sure we have the lightning texture we are going to use. Now, I know *I* didnt make this texture but if I recall I found it somewhere other than the standard directory it browses through. If you cant find it you can download it here. Select "Texture" from the toolbar and click "Browse" to find our "Lightningbolt" texture.
When you initially run the beam you'll notice that the textures black background is still present. Select "Blending" in the tool bar and change it to "2" (Additive) and hit "Apply". Now when you hit play you should notice the background is transparent.
The next thing we want to do is decrease the time that the beam runs for. Click "Duration" in the toolbar. I believe the default is "5.0" which we want to change that down to "1.0"
With the length set, we now want to set our final colors. In my example I used mostly white with a hint of purple. Select "Color" from the toolbar and make your beginning and end points both white. Move the slider to the middle and add a new KeyFrame and change its color to a light shade of purple.
With our beginning, middle, and end colors set we are now going to give some circular arc to the beam. Select "Arc" from the toolbar. For this we are going to need 4 new KeyFrames spaced about evenly between the start and end. The beginning and end points will both remain at 0,0,0 but we are going to shift around our 4 new points. Now that you have the four points dropped down somewhat evenly, select the first new point. Change its X value to .5 and hit apply. For the second point, change its Z to .5 and hit apply. For the third point, change its X to -.5 and hit apply. For the fourth point, change its Z to -.5 and hit apply. This will now cause the bolt to follow a circular point for the origin and then go back to the origin at its end. Now that we have those 4 laid down we can go to the middle KeyFrame (which we havent edited since the color change) and delete this KeyFrame. We kept it in there as a place marker so the new KeyFrames we laid down would pick the correct color they should be automatically.
With that done, go ahead and save your beam ("tutorial2_beam).
We now have our beam! However, it doesnt quite give that "beefy" beam that our goal beam has. Currently if we just put in this beam we would get something along these lines:
Now if thats what you are looking for you can stop right now. For the rest of you, lets beef that up a bit quickly.
With our beam saved, go to "File" and "New" and select "Combo". This is a simple little FX that can give quite dramatic results. There isnt any real editing options here, only the ability to load multiple effects ontop of one another. Select "FX1" from the toolbar and click "Browse". Find your "tutorial2_beam" and select "OK". Do the same thing for FX2, FX3, FX4, and FX5. Once all of those are set, go ahead and save your combo ("tutorial2_combo").
Now its time to load this bad boy onto our Henchman.
Go into the objects editor and load up the henchman.
Under the "Event Editor" tab, add a new event and call it "New Melee". As with the first tutorial we need to set the main 4 Parameters....
marker: bip01 r hand
As this is a beam effect that we want to go from the hand to another target, we need to define a few more items. I'm not 100% sure if these are the items we need as you cant really test this out without an actuall target so I had to change around the parameters slightly. I'm not sure if all these values do actually what I think they do (as once again, I cant test them in game) but they make sense in my head.
fx_transform: SelftoOther I'm assuming this is telling it that the beam effect is to stretch from the marker point to 'Other' point.
fx_other: target This defines that the 'Other' the beam is stretching to is a target.
fx_length: distance This defines that the length of the fx is determined by the distance between self to other.
In order to take the picture I changed the fx_length to "11" so I could have a look at a longer beam effect as without a target defined its fairly short.
Now, in game this wont exactly have the desired effect we are looking for. As this units attack is defined as close combat / melee, we wont see any long range beam attacks. We would also have to do some changing to the object to allow for ranged attacks.