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This tutorial provides an in-depth guide on creating a dynamic simulation in Maya, specifically demonstrating how to make a wall shatter as if impacted by a ball using the Bullet physics solver. Here’s a breakdown of the steps covered in the tutorial:

Setting Up the Scene in Maya

  1. Start by creating a cube in Maya, which will serve as the wall.
  2. Scale the cube to resemble a wall by adjusting its dimensions in the attribute editor. Ensure the wall sits on the grid by adjusting its position.
  3. Add a plane to serve as the floor, scaling it to cover the area beneath the wall and beyond to catch any debris from the shattering wall.

Preparing for Bullet Simulation

  1. With the wall selected, move to the Effects workspace to access the shatter options.
  2. Choose the “solid shatter” method with a desired number of shards (e.g., 100) for more complexity.
  3. Ensure to delete the wall’s history before creating the shatter effect to avoid errors.

Configuring the Bullet Solver

  1. Activate the Bullet plugin through the plugin manager under Windows settings. This step is crucial for accessing the Bullet physics options in Maya.
  2. Apply the Bullet solver to the shattered wall, making sure it’s set to initially sleep to prevent it from collapsing without impact.
  3. Adjust collision and margin settings to prepare for the simulation.

Creating the Ball

  1. Add a sphere to the scene, positioning it to act as the projectile.
  2. Make the sphere an active rigid body within the Bullet solver to allow it to interact dynamically with the wall.
  3. Convert the floor plane into a passive rigid body, ensuring it interacts with the ball and the debris without moving itself.

Running the Simulation

  1. Set the initial velocity and mass of the ball to ensure it moves towards and impacts the wall with sufficient force to cause the shattering effect.
  2. Optionally, adjust the simulation by changing the ball to a kinematic rigid body for manual animation control, or adjust its mass and velocity for different impact results.
  3. Add a passive cube behind the wall to serve as a backdrop or additional collision object, enhancing the realism and complexity of the simulation.


This tutorial guides through the process of setting up, configuring, and executing a dynamic shattering simulation in Maya using the Bullet physics solver. It covers the initial setup, including creating the wall and floor, enabling the Bullet solver, preparing the objects for simulation, and running the simulation to achieve the desired effect of a wall shattering upon impact by a ball. This process showcases the capabilities of Maya’s physics simulation tools for creating complex dynamic animations.

Shatter Wall with Bullet Physics Maya Tutorial