Although I am pretty certain that no great shake-up of the particle system will be on the cards, I wonder if there's not room on this forum for a discussion
First of all - my personal bugbear - I'd like to see the overdraw limit removed/increased that causes particles to render no larger than an arbirtary maximum size, causing the familiar particle "shrinkage" as you move through, or zoom into, a smoke cloud.
Perhaps have this overdraw limit, if it is absolutely to remain, to be configurable via addon/config file?
Anyway. Particle engine. I wonder if a PhysX mechanism can be applied to particles on a per-particle basis. So smoke grenade smoke would follow the terrain and building walls etc. Helos could push smoke columns aside as they hover nearby etc. Not too much practical use for that last one, just an example of what could be achieved by hooking some PhysX functionality into particles.
With the default option that particles get NO PhysX functionality.
The functionality could be based on nothing more complex than allowing the particle to have a PhysX distance value, essentially giving the particle a sphere of interaction. So if a particle gets within X distance of a collision LoD, it goes along it not through it. Doesn't need to be over complicated
For the helo example, a "cushion" of repelling force could be attached to the whirling blades LoD, so that only when the blades are rotating does the repelling force act on any PhysX-enabled particle.
I'm not suggesting that last is a game-changing design element, but you'd be incredibly impressed by ingame footage that shows helo-affected smoke and I think it'd be quite cheap, compared to non-PhysX implementation. Especially when they eventually patch hardware PhysX acceleration into ArmA3 (oops )