Glow effect?


Hi, i’m kinda new here…i need some help wif a project i’m doing…i want to add a glow behind a missile a plasma kinda glow blue in colour as its gonna be a space scene…i would also want it to be able to move along with the missile as animation will be involved…I would greatly appreciate any help provided…Thank you!


i know you can do it with video post. mabey putting a sphere behind the back of the missile with a material ID and max opacity, then assign the Id to a glow effect and mess with it. i used it for a project on a ship’s thrust like you are, and it worked farily nice. i wouldve made it better but i ran out of time :frowning:

EDIT it just occured to me that using a cone might be better than a sphere. and what are you going to use for a smoke effect?


Thanks for the quick reply really appreciate it…ok what should i use for the smoke effect??i did a smoke effect usin superspray…


C:\Documents and Settings\GPS\Desktop\max\missileleft.jpg
this is a pic of my missile i want a glow like effect behind it…??


FYI, you can’t link to a document on your computer. You have to upload it to a server and then link to it.


O thanks taoizm could u tell mi how do i go about doing it??


Get your file on the net:

And if you have enough posts you can attach small images.


There’s so many ways to do what your asking. Although I’m not sure you would really want a smoke trail in a space scene?

One other option is to use volume lights for the exhaust. Here’s a small sample that I threw together as a test render (using volume lights). One direct light stuck inside the exhaust and pointing the direction of the exhaust. Use decay to control the length of the trail, and add noise to the volume.

But I’d probably just use PFlow these days.

The render:



Thank you so much jeff thats wat i was looking for…but is thera a way to move the light trail left-right,up-down as my scenes gonna be animated??..i really appreciate it…


Yes, just link the lights to the rocket. That way when the rocket moves the lights follow. I quickly setup my test scene as an example here:
Animated rockets


Edit: If you mean you want to leave a long trail after the rocket, then no, my scenario will not work for you. You’ll need to use particles, or splines, or a plugin such as ghost trails (, etc.


Thanks very much jeff…could u explain in detail how i go about creating the light?


Use,… Rendering/ Effects/ Add/ Lens Effects/ … select “glow” under 'Lens Effects Parameters,… and click the right arrow button to add.
Under “Glow Element” select the Options Tab.
Select “Effects ID” and set to the material ID you have set to the faces you want to glow.

When doing this you can turn on “Interactive”, under the Preview, and it will update your current view or render with the glow.

  1. Create rocket.
  2. I placed 1 omni light inside the exhaust to help light up the inside of that area on the rocket. Be sure to enable shadows on this one, I just used raytrace shadows. If you don’t it will light up the entire scene unless you use decay or attenuation controls.
  3. Place a direct light inside the exhaust, pointing out in the direction of the exhaust. I didn’t use shadows on this one, I instead setup the attenuation settings. This controls where the light starts and stops. So it will effectively control the length of the exhaust trail.
  4. I then made this direct light a volume light by Rendering>Environment>Atmosphere effect (add volume light)…Or you can add volume effect at the bottom of the light’s parameters.
  5. I added the direct light to the pick light section. Then I adjusted the parameters to suit the look I was wanting. I also enabled noise and animated it just to break up the exhaust trail and give it some movement.
  6. I added a spline path and used a path constraint to make the rocket follow that path.
  7. I used the link button to bind the omni, direct light and the direct lights target to the rocket. So, wherever the rocket goes, the lights will follow.

That’s about it. Here’s my scene for reference:
Download rocket scene


Thanks for the details jeff it really helped thanks alot…


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