Whether it's a flock of crows on the horizon or a swarm of fireflies dancing away from the player, they make your world come alive. Use particles to create thick fog, heavy rain or peaceful snowflakes to build up the exact atmosphere you want for a particular experience.
Then it is time to lure the player inside that experience, create feedback to make them feel part of the game. Particles add a lot of that feel. Be it dust from footsteps, whirl of sparks from metal cutting, or gravel flying away from the wheels of a speeding SUV.
We have started adding life to Planet Nomads, our upcoming sandbox game of creation and survival on lush and exotic looking alien worlds, which provides the Robinson Crusoe experience. Except more like the Martian. And no one is coming. Here are some of our particles, waiting to be implemented into the game.
Imagine the particle effects working in tandem with sound effects and you get the idea of how powerful these little moving objects are.
SPEND THE TIME TO HAVE PARTICLES IN YOUR GAME
Unless you have a clear and specific artistic vision that will work without particles, you should use them for your game. Even if you are a small indie studio, duo or one-man-show, invest the time/money/resources to have particles in your game. Even when not perfect, they add that special flair to games that we all love. And your players will too - explosions, blood spatters, bullets hitting walls. What's it called these days... ah yes, immersion! Immersion is king.
We run a vlog on Planet Nomads development called Nomadic Journals. In the second episode on Youtube there are additional examples of weather particles.
Thanks for checking our article. You can tune in to Planet Nomads Twitter and see how the development of this game goes on.