Possibly the most fun effect that ships with AE is Shatter, in the Simulation category. Shatter is one of those effects that animates without you even having to keyframe it. Just apply Shatter, and your layer blows up. Specifically, it shatters into flying bricks. Most people who use this effect never learn how to change the shapes from bricks to anything else. And we're getting darn sick of looking at those bricks , folks.
So please , twirl open Shape and choose a different Pattern (i.e., glass). Or, be more original and create your own shatter shapes.
You can do this in Photoshop or illustrator by drawing a comp size picture. Draw each shatter shape as a filled region. Fill any of these regions with any one of the following colors: red, green, blue, cyan, magenta , yellow, black or white.
Then, import the drawing into AE, drag it into your comp and turn its eyeball off.
In Shatter's parameters, choose Custom for Shape. Finally, select your shape drawing by choosing it from the Custom Shatter Map dropdown.
If you check the White Tiles Fixes option, any shapes you draw as white-filled areas will not shatter, which gives you a way to blow something up and leave specific pieces behind. For example, the layer could shatter, leaving behind a word or logo shape