Basic MG setup walk-through:

Create stand-in file with shading network, based on Arnold userData nodes. This presentation uses object with procedural noise texture:


Shading network uses userDataColor to define inner and outer color of an object. Additionally userDataFloat drives time attribute of noise procedural texture, visible in the middle part of presented model.

Prepare animated object that will be used to populate instances:


Select animated object and create default mgAutomata network:

Create additional numeric input to control transitions (e.g. instance scale):

Create script transforming input:

float scaleFactor = inFloat[0];
vert p = inMesh[0];
float p.scale = 0.5 + rand(p.pointID)*2;
p.scale *= scaleFactor;
vector p.colorA = <<rand(p.pointID+1)*0.6, rand(p.pointID+2)*0.2, rand(p.pointID+3) * 0.6>>;
outPoints[0] = s;

Setup lighting parameters and render the scene: