Chaotica Editor Basics - Updated

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tatasz's avatar
An illustrated explanation of Chaotica`s World Editor.
It also features the Apophysis equivalents (when those exist). The left column corresponds to Chaotica, while the right column is Apo.

This is how the Chaotica Editor looks like:

Editor by tatasz

The World Editor has the following elements:
  • toolbar ("New Iterator" and "New Transform" buttons)
  • world nodes (the tree view of the iterators)
  • node editor (details of each node)

If you cannot see one of those, right click one of the visible widgets and click the corresponding option to make it visible again:

Options by tatasz

To zoom in and out the affine editor, use Alt + right mouse button.
To move, around, Ctrl + right mouse button.


(Chaotica)                                               Transform (Apo)
Iterator-transform- by tatasz Iterator-transform by tatasz

To add a new iterator, use the "New Iterator" button on top of the editor.

New Iterator by tatasz

To remove an existing iterator, click on it in the tree view and press Delete.


(Chaotica)                                            Variation (Apo)
Transform-variation- by tatasz Transform-variation by tatasz

To add a new transform, click on the transforms node and then use the "New Transform" button on top of the editor.

New Transforms by tatasz

To remove an existing transform, click on it and and press Delete.

Pre and Post transforms

Pre_ and Post_transforms (Chaotica)                 Pre_ and Post_ Variations (Apo)
Pre-post- by tatasz Pre-post by tatasz

To add a pre or post transform, click on the corresponding node (above, the post_transforms node is highlighted), and add a new transform.
In Chaotica, you can use any transform as pre or post transform. You do not need to install or even create additional plugins.

By default, the pre and post transform nodes are not visible in Chaotica. To show them, click on the flam3_transform node (highlighted on the picture below) and then use the buttons in Node editor. For example, to make post_transforms node visible, click on the "Show post transforms" button.

Pre Post- Add by tatasz


Variable (Chaotica)                                               Variable (Apo)
Variables- by tatasz Variables by tatasz

To view or change the variables of a transform, just click on the transform node. In Chaotica, you can change transform type and edit its variables in the same place.

Also, you can click and drag on the uppy downy button on the right side of each field to change the values:

Clickanddrag by tatasz


Weights (Chaotica)                                               Weight/Xaos (Apo)
Weights-xaos- by tatasz Weights-xaos by tatasz

To change the base weight (weight in Apo) of an iterator, click on the Weights node.

Weights node also contains the weights to all iterators (xaos in Apo).

Affine transforms

Affine Transforms (Chaotica)                             Triangles/Transforms (Apo)
Affines-triangles- by tatasz Affines-triangles by tatasz

How to move/rotate/scale affine transforms

To move an affine transform, click on the circle (where both axes meet) and drag.
Move by tatasz

To rotate, click on the middle of one of the axes and drag.
Rotate by tatasz

To scale, click on one of the ^ angles around the affine and drag.
Scale by tatasz

To skew, click on the arrow and drag.
Skew by tatasz

In case you want to move your affines a fixed amount, or a multiple of some fixed amount, you can use the "Snap to grid" tool.

Snaptogrid by tatasz

Check "Snap to grid". Set either grid steps or grid spacing to the desired value. Then just move / skew your affines.
Grid spacing: the space between gridlines. If you want to move your affine by 0.3333333333 (or 1/3) at once, set it to 0.3333333333.
Grid steps: is the inverse of grid spacing. In the situation above, to move your affine by 1/3, its easier to set grid steps to 3 instead of setting the spacing to 0.3333333333.

Affine Transforms: numeric input

Affine Transforms (Chaotica)                             Triangles/Transforms (Apo)
Numeric- by tatasz Numeric by tatasz

Click on the affine2 node to input numeric values, such as axes angles and length, and the affine transform offset.

Post affine Transforms

Post Affine Transforms (Chaotica)                      Post Transforms (Apo)
Postaffine- by tatasz Postaffine by tatasz

Post affines are displayed in the editor in a way similar to affine transforms (but with dotted lines for axes).
They can be edited in the same way as the affine transforms.

To add a post affine transform, click on flam3 transform node and then on the "Add post affine" button.

Pre Post- Add by tatasz

© 2015 - 2021 tatasz
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mindpoet61's avatar
Thanks again, Tatyana!
I will be referring to this tutorial often!
BetiBup33's avatar

I'm big beginner in this Fractals theme and i have one question to help... is it impossible find or make plug in or DLL or something for automatic render "ALL .chaos FILES FROM ONE FOLDER" to .jpg ...
Its very important to me...

Thank You on Yours help
stunam1's avatar
Chaotica already has the most popular plugins baked in to transform list.
BetiBup33's avatar
Thank You on Yours answer... but is it impossible make plugin for rendering all .chaos file from one folder to png...
Its very important to me, because i make large file and i can wait sitting near PC when they render it...

I try preparing many .chaos files in one folder, and put PC that do rendering in to .png without spending my life sitting there...

Thank You
tatasz's avatar
Nops, unfortunately not possible.
Since its a not very demanded option, i suppose, the devs dont really focus on that.

Apo is a bit more friendly in that regard - you can save several different fractals into one .flame and then render that at once.
BetiBup33's avatar

One more question and i will not bothering again... 
Can we convert .chaos file into .flame

And Aphophysis have that option ok, render all flame from one folder to .jpg?
do you have that script...

Thank You
AkuraPare's avatar
nice tut!

i know i repeat myself and this probably is not the best place but... sort of weights table (like in apo) + iterators/transforms in colour corresponding with the colour of triangle could help to use editor for construction of more complicated flames. but maybe it is only my disability to use it?
tatasz's avatar
nah i agree that lyc should implement something like that, as it would make editing easier
AkuraPare's avatar
i hope he will do! and i should have prepared $$ then for full version :D
CopperColour's avatar
Thanks again for this. There are a few things I haven't yet tried like the grid tools.
I also see that the node box is a floating window on the Mac and I can have it open at the same time as the editor. I didn't know that and it was a bother.

I think that the Mac version had less transforms to choose from. I saw that somewhere.
Some Apo flames won't open in it because of that.

Well I'll make do with what there is. :)
tatasz's avatar
I believe mac doesnt allow dll plugins - so native xforms are same, but the dlls are windows only
CopperColour's avatar
Yes, I read that.

I tried to put a Windows version in the Mac along with Wine ( which allows Windows programmes to run) but it didn't work.

I know Mac is a problem for several programmes. I'll just have to put up with it. :shrug:
lyc's avatar
There are the same number of transforms supported in Windows, Mac and Linux versions, however there are also Apohysis plugins, which are Windows DLL files, that only work with the Windows version (because of the operating system, not chaotica).
CopperColour's avatar
Yes, that's what I thought. Thank you for explaining. :)
I like your programme and I'm learning.
lyc's avatar
thanks for your kind words :thanks: and sorry about the problems/crashes etc! ^^;
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