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Creating Star Trek Phasers And Shield effects in 3dsMAX alone help

I'm looking for some help on how I would create a Star Trek shield hit effect, Phaser and torpedo effect in 3dsMAX (I have no access to After Effects), something about the phaser that i would like to do is that 1 end is parented to the firer and the other to the target so I dont have to manually animate the beam (I believe this can be done with Linkedxform?) <- Not that I know how to use that.. As you probably can tell Im new to MAX so detailed steps rather than 'generalisations' would be greatly appreciated :D (I have a basic way to create a self illuminating noise map for the phaser texture to make it look gaseous thanks to another tutorial on this forum, thanks by the way :D) So yeah, any help would be appreciated! Thanks! (If you need additional info just ask :D) Ill attach some pictures of the 'static' phaser I currently have
Phaser0013.jpg
111024.jpg
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