Part 29 - Some more changes.

By Jamie Chatterton / June 15, 2018

I'm going to skim over the changes I've added. By now it should be apparent how things are done... These are slow progressive changes that aren't that complex, or shouldn't be that complex to do now...

The top pusher

I've added a lip like the bottom floor. So coins will pile up like they do on the bottom. This also required moving the InitiaCoinSpawner up by 0.2

The animation. I swapped around the extremes, so it now starts at 3 and goes to 5, and comes back out to 3. This is so that the coins that are initially spawned will land on the top and are pushed down onto the lower platform. Leaving a few on top.

The coin

I finally decided that -1.5 is the best place for it to spawn from. But that's also because…

The back clear panel

I moved this back by 0.2, so there is only a gap of 0.2 between it and the back wall. This means the coin has to fit in that small gap. It helps prevent the coins jamming as much as possible.

Ultimately it would be best that this gap was as thick as the coins, but the physics engine probably wouldn't like it. And in reality it isn't like this anyway.

Quincunx

I'm going to add a Quincunx to the machine now.

I've added a pattern like the 5 side of a die for the coins to bounce around as they go down, made from small cylinders.

This gives this…

Something for coins to bounce around
Something for coins to bounce around

The problem now is this happens a lot.

Coins get stuck
Coins get stuck

I think there are multiple problems going on here.

The coins jam against each other very easily. The friction is far too high.

We need to give the coins a material with a low friction.

Create a new "Physic Material" in the Assets folder, I called it "Low Friction" and assign it values of 0.1 for dynamic friction and 0.4 for static friction. These mean it has low friction when moving, and only slightly higher friction when not moving, so they won't stick together.

This alone seems to solve the problem so it might be enough.

The other problems that might need fixing in the future are the coins not being round and the glass front wanting to be moved out slightly at the bottom. But at the moment they aren't causing a problem.

Coins are still getting stuck, when it gets stupidly congested…

Coins get stuck when congested
Coins get stuck when congested

I think the next thing to do will be to change the shape of the coin to be more rounded.

Using the ProBuilder tools I created a new 64-segment cylinder, of width 0.5, and height 0.1. So the same size of the original coin, but with more sides making it up, so far rounder.

Dragging this new shape over the "coin" prefab, it replaces the existing one, but it now needs 'fixing'.

This involves changing "static" back not unticked in the top.

Adding back the RigidBody as this had been removed.

Adding back the Material to LowFriction.

Setting "Interpolate" as the interpolate method in the RigidBody.

And finally using ProBuilder to set the material to the "coin" material.

It's still getting jammed…

Round coins still jam
Round coins still jam!

But the coins are prettier.

I think the next thing will be to make sure coins don't overlap by making that gap between glass and wall as small as possible.

Manually altering the Glass wall to a Z of -0.12 and the SpawnLocation to -0.11 puts these as tight as it allows before it stops spawning.

Git repository: https://bitbucket.org/hiveit/unity-tutorial-coin/src/0dbed4123ae135262a8a52b243087aac168a876d/

The coins at present can fall and pile vertically on top of each other fairly easily.

In reality, the coins would have some randomness of rotation and slight offset when they fall. But at present they are perfectly still when they are created.

I am going to add a little jitter to the velocity and angular velocity of the coins when they spawn, so they are moving slightly and rotating slightly. To give a slight amount of realism to them.

First we need some configurable Jitter properties in the SpawnerController

public float velocityJitter = 1.0f;
public float angularVelocityJitter = 10.0f;

Now in the SpawnObject function, after we have created and positioned the coin, we need to get it's Rigidbody component and add some randomness based on these Jitter values…

var coinRigidbody = coin.GetComponent();

coinRigidbody.angularVelocity =
   Random.Range(-angularVelocityJitter, angularVelocityJitter) * coin.transform.up;

coinRigidbody.velocity =
   coin.transform.forward * Random.Range(-velocityJitter, velocityJitter)
   +
   coin.transform.right * Random.Range(-velocityJitter, velocityJitter)
   ;

If you look at the coin in the inspector you can work out the directions that things rotate around and need to move around based on the arrows.

Selecting the coin under the "Spawn Location" object in the hierarchy we see

Selecting coin under Spawn Location
Selecting coin under Spawn Location

With the green arrow showing that the coins up vector corresponding to the vector we will want to set the initial rotation around. While the red arrow being the right vector and the blue arrow being the forward vector.

So from that, in the above code, we create a random angular velocity around the coins up

Then we create a random velocity in the "right/forward" plane.

Both relative to the objects frame of reference, not the 'world'.

Git repository: https://bitbucket.org/hiveit/unity-tutorial-coin/src/05e33e5f0f0219737ee7b9bf73e0e73890835377/

Finally for this section, extending the top of that back wall, so that coins don't fall off the back.

Using the Probuilder tools to select the top of the wall

Select top of wall
Select top of wall

Then using the Extrude faces option…

Use Extrude Faces options
Use Extrude Faces options

To add a new face extending from the existing one

Add a new face
Add a new face

Moving the wall up…

Moving the wall up
Moving the wall up

And finally pushing that top edge back

Pushing top edge back 1
Pushing top edge back 1
Pushing top edge back 2
Pushing top edge back 2

This can highlight a problem still…

Coins getting jammed at the top. A better way would be to have an actual chute delivering the coins instead of them just materialising in the gap.

But, buggy as it is, it still needs committing… but no tag…

… it's not finished…

Git repository: https://bitbucket.org/hiveit/unity-tutorial-coin/src/7f1a26e27d68c1e2fef179d9311e35493cf2724f/

This has been an experiment… but to play with it for a bit, the best solution I've found so far is to create a solid cube, across the top of the entire possible spawning area, and add the SpawnerBlockerDetector script to it. to stop any coins being added until the entire area is clear.

Which looks something like

SpawnBlockerDetector cube
SpawnBlockerDetector cube

Also, adjusting the physics material to having a friction values of both 0.1 helped some of the jamming at the bottom of the wall.

Cooking the mesh doesn't help at all. So in the coin prefab, I've turned off all the options in the Mesh Collider for "Cooking Options".

I've changed the coin, so it's half the size, but replaced the coin mesh...

Like before, when changing the resolution of the cylinder, I created a new cylinder using probuilder using the following options..

New cylinder options
New cylinder options

To add more points for collision to the coin.

"Build cylinder" and set it's position to 0,0,0. Then dragged it over the coin prefab, replaced it and set up the details of the prefab again. Added the texture, added the Rigidbody, Set Pb_Entity "entity type" to Mover. Set the Mesh Collider material and removed the cooking options. Set it to a Convex collider…

Prefab settings
Prefab settings

There are some problems with the coins being flat falling through the floor. I've updated the InitialCoinSpawner to add a random rotation to the coins. This is a limitation of the physics engine, not the code directly.

I also extended the InitialCoinSpanwer object out to cover more of the lower platform and increased the number of coins spawned to 200.

Git repository: https://bitbucket.org/hiveit/unity-tutorial-coin/src/cc07a213d49ff5becdf8c6e970636bd4865b34ca/

You can see the final repository here: https://bitbucket.org/hiveit/unity-tutorial-coin/src/83ea7060bab79c8a46d5c55fe0b48f723f7c9b09/

More posts in this series.