One of the assets available for free at the Unreal Marketplace is Insta Deform Component for Unreal Engine. As I said in my “UE free stuff” article for this month, this is a component that lets you add deformation to your skeletal meshes.
Insta Deform Component works as a plugin, which means you first need to enable the plugin in the editor before you can use it. After you enable it and restart the editor, you’re ready to go.
Using Insta Deform is fairly easy. First, you need to open the skeletal mesh you want deformations applied to, and then you need to add the InstaDeform component to it. Then, also in your Blueprint, you need to select your mesh and activate the “Simulation Generates Hit Events” checkbox.
Lastly, you need to go to your mesh PhysicsAsset, select all the colliders, and then check the “Simulation Generates Hit Events” box for all of them.
Depending on the size of your model, you may not get any deformation. To fix that, you need to modify two parameters so deformation is more noticeable. In the InstaDeform component there are two parameters, Max Deform and Max Scale, which control how much the object deforms on collision.
During my initial test, with de default values, the car didn’t deform at all. However, after I increased the values to the ones you see there, I got this result.
Obviously, this was too much, but after tweaking the parameters a little bit I got something better.
Since you can use this on any kind of skeletal mesh, it means you can even use it for other things, like armored walking vehicles, or ships, etc. There are even plans to support static meshes, so that’s going to be interested. The best of all is that the system is very easy to use (although it will require some work for testing) so you can get your deformations in no time.
If you are making a game with vehicles, and you want to add deformations to them when collisions happen, this one is for you. Make sure you get your copy right now, since it’s free during this month.