Game Development Reference
away from the left edge of the path that the text is. Baseline Shift
allows you to increase the number of pixels that the text rises up
from the baseline (the imaginary line that text sits on) (Fig. 13.8).
Creating Text on a
If you want to
create text on
a path with the
regular text animation
engine in After Effects,
create a mask on your
text layer, and then under
choose the name of the
mask from the Path drop
down list. Your text will
instantly snap to the shape
of the path.
Figure 13.8 Increasing the Left Margin value moves the text to the right, and increasing
the Baseline Shift value raises it up from the path.
Open up the Advanced area to really start having some fun with
this effect. At the top of this area is the Visible Characters prop-
erty. This is exactly what it sounds like—it determines how many
characters are visible. The default value is a rather high 1024. If
I take this value to something like two, then only two of my char-
acters are visible. This is kind of like a really weak version of the
Range Selectors found on text layers. You can use this property to
animated text appearing, one character at a time (Fig. 13.9).
Figure 13.9 My Path Text with
the Visible Characters property at
a value of 2.
Finally, we come to the Jitter Settings area. In the world of After
Effects, two of my favorite words are jitter and wiggle. Both words
are usually synonyms for randomness, which is a great thing in
my book. Jitter (as in the case with Card Wipe and others) can also
have the added meaning that it won't wiggle until adjusted. So, if
you were to play your composition with this effect at its default
settings, there wouldn't be any animation. But if you adjust any of