Update: BTW, @Oddernod posted some intro tips for Trapcode Particular on Twitter,
- Been playing w Particular a TON lately - quick tips: work w lots of small particles (less than 3) at low opacity (less than 5%) set to ADD mode
- use Glow Spheres as particle type, set to big size & feather values, & low opacity. Use motion blur set to subframe
- crank shutter angle up & play w levels & opacity boost. Work in 32-bit Linear for some terrific glow blends
- Study those Physics settings! Wire up a Expression Slider to Particles/sec to act as a multipler for working vs render values
- Treat Particular like a 3D app's particle system: use Motion Preview mode to quickly design the movement, then design the look.