PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension in Godot – Complete Guide

Physics is the backbone of any game universe; it brings realism, challenge, and a sense of immersion that’s hard to achieve otherwise. But when it comes to coding physics in a game, things can get complicated. This is where Godot 4 jumps in with its robust set of tools, including the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension class. It enhances how developers interact with the physics engine, offering extensive control over body state physics. In this tutorial, we’re going to dive into what this class is, its capabilities, and how you can wield it to make your virtual worlds come alive.

What is PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension?

The PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension class serves as an extension to the already powerful PhysicsDirectBodyState3D. It inherits from PhysicsDirectBodyState3D and allows us to override standard physics server methods. Essentially, this class is the gateway to creating custom physics behaviors within the Godot engine.

What is it for?

This class allows game developers to modify how physics are applied to objects at a low level. By overriding the methods provided by the class, one can customize the response of physical bodies in the game environment like never before. Whether you want an object to float whimsically or mimic the gravitational pull of a black hole, it’s all possible through this extension.

Why Should I Learn It?

Understanding how to use the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension can take your game from good to great. It’s all about:

– Creating unique physical interactions that can set your game apart.
– Having the knowledge to solve complex physics problems that might arise during development.
– Empowering yourself to experiment and create game mechanics that are truly out of the box.

Learning this extension equips you with the expertise to mold the physics of your game to your creative vision, making it a critical skill for any budding or experienced game developer.

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Getting Started with PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension

To get started, let’s set up a simple scenario in Godot 4 where we can apply physics modifications using the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension. Here, we’ll create a script that customizes the physical response of a rigid body when it collides.

First, ensure that you have a RigidBody3D node added to your scene. Create a new script for this body and name it ``. This script will implement our PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):

This code sets up the backbone for our custom physics. The `_integrate_forces` function is where we’ll apply the physics logic.

Applying Custom Gravity

Let’s say we want our rigid body to experience gravity differently. We might want it to hover against normal gravity or to be affected by the gravitational pull from another object in the game. We can do this by customizing the `integrate_forces` function.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var custom_gravity_vector = Vector3(0, -1, 0) # Normal gravity direction
    custom_gravity_vector *= 2 # Increase gravity's strength
    state.total_gravity = custom_gravity_vector

This code snippet effectively doubles the gravity affecting the rigid body.

Custom Impulse Application

Now let’s make our body react to collisions by adding an impulse that pushes it away from the colliding object, creating a bouncing effect.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var collision_count = state.get_contact_count()
    for i in range(collision_count):
        var contact_position = state.get_contact_local_position(i)
        var impulse_vector = contact_position - self.global_transform.origin
        impulse_vector = impulse_vector.normalized() * 10

This code will apply an impulse each time there is a collision, making the rigid body “bounce” off from the point of contact.

Overriding Default Motion

Sometimes, you might want to override the default motion of a body—for instance, to simulate slippery surfaces or sticky movements. The following example shows how to do that:

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var linear_velocity = state.linear_velocity
    state.linear_velocity = linear_velocity.linear_interpolate(Vector3.ZERO, 0.1) # Gradually reduce velocity

Here we’re interpolating the current velocity of the rigid body with a zero vector, effectively reducing its speed as if it were experiencing increased resistance or moving through a viscous medium.

Creating a Custom Force Field

Imagine you want to create a special area where physics change entirely, such as a force field that repels all objects within it. Let’s customize our `_integrate_forces` function to check for such a condition.

extends RigidBody3D

var is_in_force_field = false # Set this to true via game logic when in a force field

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    if is_in_force_field:
        var force_direction = (self.global_transform.origin - force_field_origin).normalized()
        state.apply_central_impulse(force_direction * force_magnitude)

Perhaps in this code snippet, `force_field_origin` and `force_magnitude` are calculated or set elsewhere in your game script according to your game’s logic. These will dictate the direction and strength of the force field.

Each code example provides a starting point for fundamental concepts. They’re designed to demonstrate the fundamental utility of the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension class. Remember that in your own applications, you can layer and combine these concepts to achieve sophisticated and customized physics behaviors.Great! With the fundamentals of the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension under our belts, let’s continue with even more examples that will illustrate the versatility and power of this extension for creating advanced physics interactions in Godot 4.

Handling Angular Velocity

One aspect of physics that can add a lot of dynamism to a game is rotation. Using our class, we can influence the angular velocity of an object to simulate effects like rotation upon collision.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var torque = Vector3(0, 1, 0) # This will apply a rotation along the Y axis

Here, we’ve added a constant torque that will keep our rigid body spinning.

Simulating Underwater Physics

In games, you often want to create different environments with distinct physics, such as water. By altering the forces acting on your rigid body, you can simulate buoyancy and resistance that you would find underwater.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    if is_underwater:
        var buoyancy_force = Vector3(0, 12, 0) # Upward force simulating buoyancy
        var water_resistance = -state.linear_velocity * 0.5 # Simulate drag in water
        state.apply_impulse(Vector3(), water_resistance)

Here, you notice that we’re using the current linear velocity to calculate the drag force, giving a sense of movement through a thicker medium.

Creating Custom Collision Responses

What if we want to customize how an object reacts when it hits another specific object? This could be used for interactions like a ball changing color when it hits a target or imparting a specific force only when colliding with certain objects.

extends RigidBody3D

var target_body: RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    for i in range(state.get_contact_count()):
        var collider = state.get_contact_collider_object(i)
        if collider == target_body:
            var reaction_force = Vector3(0, 500, 0) # The reaction force we want to apply
            change_ball_color() # Example function to change color

This snippet iterates through colliders and applies a unique reaction to a target body.

Modifying Physics Properties in Real-time

Let’s also explore how PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension enables us to change physical properties like mass or friction in real-time, something that can be used to simulate power-ups, damage, or environmental effects.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    if is_powered_up: # is_powered_up is a boolean variable that could be toggled in your game
        state.mass = 1 # Lighten the body, maybe it picked up a feather power-up
        state.mass = 5 # Return to normal mass
extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var ice_friction = 0.1 # Very low friction for ice
    var default_friction = 1 # The default friction

    if is_on_ice:
        state.friction = ice_friction
        state.friction = default_friction

These examples showcase how you might alter the mass and friction. Changes in these properties influence the rigid body’s behavior, such as how quickly it stops moving or how it reacts to collisions.

By delving into these diverse use cases, you can see how Godot’s PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension allows for detailed and creative physics programming. Each script snippet provides a practical insight into Godot’s powerful physics capabilities and brings you a step closer to mastering game physics in your projects. Whether simulating different environments or creating intricate object interactions, the control you have is truly extensive. With this knowledge, we invite you to wield the tools that Godot 4 offers to bring your creative visions to life in ways you’ve never imagined before.Certainly! Let’s further explore the depth of the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension by adding a series of examples that demonstrate more advanced techniques, such as simulating different forces, creating dynamic movement patterns, and even integrating custom physics calculation beyond the usual collision and impulse applications.

Simulating Attraction and Repulsion Forces

Games often feature mechanics where objects attract or repel each other. This could simulate magnetism, gravity wells, or other interesting effects.

extends RigidBody3D

var magnet_position: Vector3
var magnet_strength: float = 100
var is_repelling: bool = false

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var direction_to_magnet = (magnet_position - state.transform.origin).normalized()
    var force = direction_to_magnet * magnet_strength
    if is_repelling:
        force = -force

This code snippet lets us simulate both attraction to and repulsion from a point in space.

Simulating Projectile Motion with Air Resistance

Projectiles in games often need to consider air resistance for a more realistic trajectory. The example below shows how to apply such physics principles.

extends RigidBody3D

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var drag_coefficient = 0.5 # This value can be tweaked depending on desired resistance
    var air_density = 1.225 # Kg/m^3 (average air density at sea level)
    var frontal_area = 0.01 # m^2 (example cross-sectional area of a projectile)
    var drag_force = 0.5 * drag_coefficient * air_density * state.linear_velocity.length_squared() * frontal_area
    state.apply_impulse(Vector3(), -state.linear_velocity.normalized() * drag_force)

This code applies a force opposite to the direction of travel, simulating air resistance based on the projectile’s velocity.

Custom Gravity with Altitude Effect

Maybe you want gravity in your game world to decrease with altitude, simulating a celestial body’s decrease in gravitational pull as you move away from its surface.

extends RigidBody3D

var planetary_surface_position: Vector3
var planetary_radius: float = 1000

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var distance_from_surface = state.transform.origin.distance_to(planetary_surface_position)
    var gravity_modifier = max(planetary_radius / distance_from_surface, 1)
    state.total_gravity = Vector3(0, -9.81 / gravity_modifier, 0)

This code modifies the gravitational acceleration based on the rigid body’s distance from a defined planetary surface.

Simulating Elasticity and Bounces

Elasticity can be a fun element in games, especially when it comes to objects bouncing around the environment. We can simulate this by applying a restitutive force after an impact.

extends RigidBody3D

var elasticity: float = 0.8 # 80% restitution

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    for i in range(state.get_contact_count()):
        var impact_velocity = state.get_contact_local_velocity(i)
        if impact_velocity.length() > 1: # Minimum impact velocity for bounce
            var normal = state.get_contact_local_normal(i)
            var restitutive_force = -normal * * elasticity
            state.apply_impulse(Vector3(), restitutive_force)

Here, the impulse is calculated based on the contact normal and the elasticity of the object, giving us a bounce effect.

Variable Friction Based on Movement Direction

In some cases, you might want objects to exhibit different friction values based on the direction they move in, which could simulate anisotropic surfaces like brushed metal or cloth.

extends RigidBody3D

var friction_along_x: float = 0.5
var friction_along_z: float = 1.0

func _integrate_forces(state: PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension):
    var velocity = state.linear_velocity
    state.linear_velocity.x *= friction_along_x
    state.linear_velocity.z *= friction_along_z

This code snippet reduces the velocity independently along the X and Z axes to simulate anisotropic friction.

By examining these examples, you can appreciate how the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension in Godot 4 empowers developers to develop physics interactions that greatly enhance gameplay. From simulating complex forces to creating detailed movement patterns, your ability to imbue your game world with advanced physics simulations is limited only by your imagination. With this knowledge, we encourage you to push the boundaries of game physics and craft experiences that are both engaging and memorable for your players.

Continue Your Game Development Journey

Mastering the PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension in Godot 4 is just one step in the limitless journey of game development. If you’re passionate about expanding your skills and creating your own games, we at Zenva have precisely what you need to continue this adventure. Our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree is a comprehensive suite that guides learners through the fascinating process of making games using Godot 4.

The journey of learning with us doesn’t stop here. Whether you are a beginner or someone who has mastered the basics, we provide beginner to professional courses, allowing you to evolve into a skilled game developer at your own pace. Our Godot courses cover a broad range of topics and offer practical knowledge through live coding lessons, quick challenges, and quizzes to reinforce what you learn. You’ll not only earn certificates of completion to showcase your achievements but will also have the ability to publish your own games.

Embark on this educational journey with us, where learning is flexible, accessible 24/7, and always at the cutting edge. With our support, step confidently into the world of game development and let your creativity soar. Remember, the only limit is your imagination!


In wrapping up our exploration of PhysicsDirectBodyState3DExtension in Godot 4, it’s clear that this tool not only diversifies your physics toolset but also expands your horizons in game development. By leveraging the advanced capabilities of Godot 4, you’re empowered to infuse your games with realistic and imaginative physics behaviors that can leave players in awe. However, this is just a fragment of the whole picture of game development possibilities.

Whether you’ve followed along with intrigue or coded side-by-side with our examples, your journey through game creation is one we at Zenva are excited to be a part of. Delve deeper, challenge your skills, and breathe life into your most ambitious game ideas with our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree. Take this opportunity to transcend the ordinary and build extraordinary gaming experiences. Your next game-changing project begins now!

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