Pixel Explosion

Explode the pixels on your sprite. Designed for pixel art.


  1. On your sprite import setting, make sure Filter is disabled. I recommend to disable Mipmaps too.
  2. Create a noise texture for the “Noise Tex” uniform. Set the resolution as your sprite resolution, then on the Flags, disable Filter and Mipmaps.
    On the Noise, create new OpenSimplexNoise and set the period to 0.1
  3. Do the same for “Noise Tex Normal”, but use different seed and check “As Normalmap”
Shader code
shader_type canvas_item;

uniform sampler2D noise_tex_normal;
uniform sampler2D noise_tex;
uniform float progress : hint_range(0.0, 1.0);
uniform float strength = 1.0;

// If your sprite doesn't have enough space and the explosion gets clipped, 
// you can uncomment this and adjust the scale
//void vertex() {
//	float scale = 3.0;
//	VERTEX *= scale;
//	UV *= scale;
//	UV -= (scale - 1.0) / 2.0;

void fragment() {
	vec2 direction = texture(noise_tex_normal, UV).xy; // We're using normal map as direction
	direction -= 0.5; // Since our normal map is a texture, it ranges from 0.0 to 1.0...
	direction *= 2.0; // ...so we're going to make it range from -1.0 to 1.0.
	direction = direction * strength * progress;
	// UV for exploded texture
	vec2 tex_size = 1.0 / TEXTURE_PIXEL_SIZE; // Real texture size in pixels
	vec2 uv = floor(UV * tex_size) / (tex_size - 1.0); // Pixelate UV to snap pixels
	uv = uv - direction; // Distort UV
	// Texture with exploded UV
	vec4 tex = texture(TEXTURE, uv); 
	// Dissolve alpha
	float dissolve = texture(noise_tex, UV).x;
	dissolve = step(progress, dissolve);
	tex.a *= dissolve;
	// Border (in case the edge of your sprite stretches, otherwise you can remove this block)
	vec2 border_uv = uv * 2.0 - 1.0;
	border_uv = clamp(abs(border_uv), 0.0, 1.0);
	float border = max(border_uv.x, border_uv.y);
	border = ceil(1.0 - border);
	tex.a *= border;
	COLOR = tex;
explosion, pixel
The shader code and all code snippets in this post are under CC0 license and can be used freely without the author's permission. Images and videos, and assets depicted in those, do not fall under this license. For more info, see our License terms.

More from Elid Elid

Matrix Rain


LED/Dot Matrix

Related shaders

PlayWithFurcifer’s Sprite Pixel Explosion Shader

cartoon explosion effect

Sub-Pixel Accurate Pixel-Sprite Filtering

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 year ago

Thanks for this, old style pixelart.

6 months ago

Is it possible for this to work in 4.2? It doesn’t seem to work on the sprite the same unfortunately.