How to Build a Softbody Glass Mesh with Dynamics in Cinema 4D

November 26, 2010

In this tutorial, I show you how to make a Glass Mesh object with spheres inside using Cloner Objects, Softbody dynamics and rigid body dynamics. I also use the Infinite floor technique for the white floor. This tutorial was made using Cinema 4D Version 12. But, if you are still running earlier versions of Cinema, have no fear. There has been some great discussion on how to do this technique in 11.5 in the comments over at this post. As always, feel free to push this tutorial and try your own version with different shapes or even text! Can’t wait to see what fun stuff you come up with.

Final Result

Tutorial Focus:  , , ,
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  • wanted to see workaround in 11.5

  • Hey ive done this inspired on your tut just to let you know ,oh and i did it with 11.5 never figured out how to do the cloth working with dinamycs together, ive researched a lot :S

  • Very cool tut, I learned a lot about soft body dynamics, thanks!


  • how to use Soft body in 11.5 version,
    I could not find in 11.5 Please help

  • greattt !!!! thx you ! you are the best !

  • Hey Nick, Great tutorial! U might have figured out that cylinder problem you were having but if you didn’t… Cylinder State to Object, select all your verticies, functions/optimize, click ok. That essentially welds all of your verts together and will keep your caps from flying off the earth! Dunno why C4d has that set up as the default mesh but.. That should fix it for you! Keep the great tuts coming man

  • great tutorial as always nick. created a great still shot with this tutorial and added some effects in photoshop

  • Great tut, thanks 🙂 realy nice work and this give me a lot of knowlage about dynamics in C4D 🙂

  • Hey Nick, the tut was very helpful because I was wondering if I could do the cover of the recent deadmau5 album (4×4=12)in cinema and then I noticed that I could do the trick if I used the cloner object method you used.
    Here is the result:


  • Hey! An awesome result there!!!

    But… now that you talk about phong I was wondering in there’s a tool or a plug-in to really improve the visual sub-division as Turbosmooth for 3DMax.

    I’m looking all over Internet without any success. PLEASE HELP!

  • Has anyone figured out how to work around the softbody dynamics in v11.5? Or what happened to the posts where Nick said information on the problem could be found?

  • Nick you are the man, thank you.

    Awesome tutorial

  • Nick you are the man, awesome tutorial

  • Nice tutorial! Totaly loved it, keep up the good work.
    Here is my finished render.

  • Hi, I need help.
    I want to know why I have no ‘softbody’ in the dynamics panel, i see you have more dynamics and I have only three. I have the same version of the program. Please Help me

  • Nick
    I just got C4D r12 and it keeps freezing, not sure if you can help. I have been running 11.5 with no issues. I have a 64 bit and 6 gb ram. Not sure what the issue could be. If you have a sec or any ideas what the problem could be I would really appreciate it.

  • Hi! gorilla!
    I recently knew this awesome tutorial video!
    I’m really crazy about this lecture!
    But I have some problem.
    Actually mine is version 11.5.
    I can’t find simulation icon on the bar which you used that function like create rigid body and so on on this tutorial.
    I need your advice 😉
    If you let me know ASAP, I would be grateful.

  • Awsome tutorial, I’m a big fan.

    an other way of getting rid of your exploding caps problem is filletting your caps don’t know why it works but it does


  • heyy… i have the thrausi plugin but i have put it everywhere, from the plugin file in roaming to the plugin file in c4d’s location but when i go to c4d it doesnt appear in the plugin menu. can anyone help me???

  • im sorry but i aint gettin any shadows with the overhead soft box and i am not getting any shadows with normal lights either 🙁

  • “Get the heck offa me, your touching me” HAHAHAHA I laughed for ages at this!

  • Hi, Nick! Very useful tutorial. Thanks!

    But, did u found a way how to do this with objects like cylinder or extruded text? I need it very much ((.


  • Joshua deLorimier May 4, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    Hey I can not figure out how to “trap” the objects inside another object…..I am using an emitter and it is shooting through my cube…and then I even tried to trick it with a plane and still doesn’t work…I switched the object to static mesh…since my object isn’t moving….in fact played with every setting the emitter is shooting through is there something in the dynamics tag of the emitter I should be looking at….thanks to anyone who can help…..
    here is the project file…thanks a lot nick and to everyone on this site….i am three weeks into learning cinema since being laid off, spending ten hours a day on it…I will be using it in my freelance work soon.

  • so i think, wait OooOOOOooOOooOOo! HERES what happened!

  • Niiiiiice, Nick!
    I did mine… its my first render on C4D… if you guys could gimme some tips, that will be great!


  • pls can anyone help on the dynamics for v11.5, i cant seem to find my simulation tab where all the dynamics is at. Please help.. Please

  • any help please when i hit the play bottom my dynamics don’t work?

  • Hi Nick

    Just want to thanks for the tuts, they are great.

    Keep them coming

  • hey! nice tutorial, but i have a problem… the floor doesnt receives shadows, and y have marked cast shadow and receives shadow!! what ca i do?

  • hi nic, congratulations for your job.
    the issue from the cylinder may be fixed by
    making it editable and selecting optimize from function menu?
    regards from mexico!

  • This is probably a basic question, but how do I get the shadows to not flicker? I tried turning the intensity down and backing up the light. I do not have the light kit, but have tried omni and area lights with area and soft shadows but cant figure it out.

  • Hi nick I’ve a question and maybe you can help me…I need create a scene where a close bag is falling and hit the floor, it has fruits these fruits must keep inside the bag and moving..while the bag must respond to physic and change its form…my question

    my bag is a soft body and it has the cloth tag
    my fruis are hard bodies and they’ve the collision cloth tag

    when i run the animation the physic works but my bag isn’t a cloth
    when i run the cloth option “relax” the cloth work but oviously not the physic…

    I know the solution would is in the cache option but I’m not pretty sure how resolv it..I’ve tried many ways and it still not worked

    thanks for help

  • So I’m doing an infinite white background, and when I add a linear skylight it messes up the effect. Now I was like, “Okay I should just go to the composite tag and uncheck seen by camera”. Well it won’t let me, I uncheck it and then it automatically rechecks it. Any idea why?

    I love everything you do, your awesome! I’ve really learned a lot because of your tutorials and blogs.

    • Make sure you go into the rig itself, where all the settings are to turn off “Seen by camera” instead of on the composite tag. I built it in.

      • Hi Nick 🙂 I started watching your tutorial 2 weeks ago, and I totally love them.
        I know this is an old video, but I decided to start doing this one for my first try in C4D.
        I follow all your suggestion, and stuff, and advice 😀 But mine work sucks.
        Then I watch your last video in the “Speaking”, and I smiled when you talked about the comparison with your hero’s work, because it is exactly what i was thinking: “why mine orange balls are not so bright and the cage is not soft as his one? In his works the inside balls seem much more softy and better looking, and my light are sooo ugly D:”.
        So I’m not gonna ask you for values changes and stuff 🙂 Just wanna say to you that now you are my mk12.
        I’m not studying any type of graphics school, I’m 19, and in Italy and I don’t know where I can go to learn, so I’m trying to self-educate myself.
        I’m trying to learn some AE, and C4D, and I’m not really really bad, at least I understand the mechanic 🙂
        So… Let’s finish up, just thank you for all this, I hope to become good and learn as much as I can here, I would really love to find a job in that environment 😀

  • hi this is my first time i comment i like your work and i follow all you”r lessons but i have C4D 11.5 and i dont have Softbody Dynamics how i can have it

  • I have learn several good stuff here. Definitely price bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how a lot attempt you place to create this kind of magnificent informative website.

  • Awesome blog.Much thanks again. Really Great.

  • Hallo Nick,
    great tutorial, like always. I’ve a problem rendering the scene. Dynamics works great but when I render the scene the sphere and the plane just ignore the tags. I mean, the sphere breaks into the floor and it doesn’t change the form. Should I set something in the render settings?


  • This is SO awesome.

    I’m having a go at the tutorial but trying todo it with motext or just text imported from illustrator
    Nick do you know how it can be done with motext?

  • Loved that “ouuh” sound at 27:38 haha!

    Thanks for your tutorials, learning so much from them and always having a pleasant moment watching it!

  • My very first cinema animation… thank you so much Nick 🙂
    i just followed all, im a newbie
    Here’s mine c4d r13

  • is it possible to make models ( cars, building, chair etc, etc) to behave like this, i mean soft body dynamics. check this one
    i tried a lot to do this, but its not working, help pls,……

  • This was one of the best tutorial ive ever saw. Thank you very much.

  • thanks, thanks, thanks, thanks, . Eres bueno, muy bueno.

  • Hi Nick
    special thanks for ur amazing tips & lessons
    I had a question regarding the Icosahedra look that you applied to your sphere.
    How can I apply that to a TEXT. Im trying to get those triangle look for a text like the one in the commercial (the 15sec)
    the word Wonder and that diamond look & feel.
    thanks a lot

  • This is a very cool tutorial to play with soft body tags. I am a huge fan of Nick and your awesome tutorials, really great job, inspiring and educational!

    I have a problem though when doing this same tutorial but with Boxes instead of spheres.

    If I create a cage cube, add it a rigid body tag, and then add a cloner inside with smaller cubes with rigid body tags and hit play, everything works perfect. The cubes just fall inside the cube cage while this falls as well to the floor and goes to rest with no problem. But If I change the rigid body tag in the cube cage to softbody tag and press play. the small cubes do not go to rest, they keep moving around inside the big cage with no reason. I have changed the collision noise to 0 and upped the damping in both dynamics tags, but can’t find a way for them to go to rest. Might be something to do with the force from the collision spreading around the soft body tag, but can’t make it fade. 🙁

  • Richie Williamson January 1, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Great tutorial. You make it so doable. I’ve gotten some good ideas from this and can’t wait to implement. Thanks for getting back to me about the difficulty posting. I am now giving it a try. Oh and by the way Thanks again! and a happy new year!

  • Hi Nick,
    I tried to do this one by myself before looking at the tutorial. And instead of cloning the cilinders and spheres onto the other sphere, I tried to do it with an Atom Array.
    All of the rest I did the same.
    I put the atom array and the transparent sphere into a connect object, and then gave that the softbody dynamics tag. For some reason this doesn’t seem to work (the grid from the atom array kinda expands infinitely instead of falling down)..
    Is there a way to make this work? Or is the only solution to make the “cage” your way..?

    • Got it fixed! Had the tag placed on the array instead of the sphere it was made from. Putting it on the sphere solved it. Could do without the Connect Object btw.

  • Please, I need your help!!
    When I render my scene, the refractions on the glass doesnt affect the back side of the sphere, I don’t know why… 🙁 Its like the refractions had a fresnel on them.
    Thank you.

  • 😀 Sorry, I forgot to delete the phong tag. Thank you for your amazing tutorials. I’ve learned a lot of things with you. On other words, you’re my IDOL.
    I’m from Chile, sorry for bad english.

  • Whenever I have colored textures, they always render out very desaturated and dark.
    Does anyone know why this might be?


  • Hi Nick,

    Great tut again, thanks a lot.

  • Hey man I love your tutorials. But I have a question – why didn’t you use the Atom Array to create the cylinders and spheres around the big sphere?

  • Help!
    I’ve tried something like that and put it on render.. it wasen’t even half done after 3 hrs of rendering.. What did I do wrong? I played around with the GI, minimized reflections and polygons but still.. 3 hrs later and the render was till on the go although I followed this tutorial..

    I’ve got a quad-core mac from mid-summer 2012 and Cinema 4D R12.

    Ps. Thanks for so many amazing tutorials, helps out learning Cinema 4D every day!

  • Shana L. Darabie July 24, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Had a lot of fun with this one. I used a variety of platonic shapes rather than spheres on the inside. Unfortunately, I did have problems with a few little ones flying out sometimes.

  • This tutorial is great! But I have a problem with the light, it seems to be cut at the edges. How can i fix that problem? I’m using sunlight to illuminate de scene. Thank you!

    Here is my video.

  • How would you do something like this with text?


    Thank you Nick!.. that was an awesome experience 🙂

  • Stéphane Flesch July 28, 2014 at 8:05 pm

    Hey Nick,
    Thanks for your amazing tutorials. I’m learning cinema on my own and your work is really useful!

    I have a question regarding the moving or static mesh.
    I’m trying to make a ball roll down a spiral tube. The tube is a helix placed in a sweep nurbs, set to be a static mesh collider. The ball’s behaviour is very erratic. It basically jumps out of the tube at frame 2 and doesn’t follow the helix path as it should.

    I don’t want to use the Align to spline for this, because I don’t think this looks natural. I want to do this with Dynamics but I’m stuck now, and I don’t know why. Any idea?

  • Thank you for a very nice tutorial Nick! 😀

  • Okay i know this is a rather old tutorial, but wouldn’t it make more sense to convert the sphere and extrude all polygons, so c4d treats it and its reflections/refractions the right way?
    I did this and made a point and edge selection on the outside of the sphere for the clones and got far more pleasing results while render time stays roughly the same.

    Great work anyways

  • Hey Nick the Gorilla, thanks for all the great tutorials. I’m learning so much from greyscalegorilla, really appreciate it 🙂 Keep up the good work!

  • Hi, Nick, I know it’s been a long time since you release this tutorial, but today when I picked it up and redo what you did in this tutorial, I found that my render speed is extremely slow compare to yours in this tutorial.
    So one thing keeping cross my mind is even though I’m using a R16 C4D and a much better Mac than what you were using 5 years ago (no offense), but it rendered about 10 mins for a single frame… I set it to 1280×720, AO, but no GI, just exactly render settings as you set in this tutorial. You know when you living recording this tutorial it just took 10 secs to render…
    Wondering why how this is happening, do you have any ideas what might drags it down? Did you use teamrender for this tutorial?
    Thank you.

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