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Blender 2.68: Weight Tools reworked


Gaia Clary
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What you get, in a nutshell with Blender 2.68...

 

  • Almost all weight Paint tools now do what they are supposed to do. (exception: The Fix Deform tool has NOT been reworked yet). Many of the tools have got a new Subset option for restricting operations on subsets of vertex groups.
  • Especially the Transfer Weights tool now works as designed. It had a few odd issues that made it work in some unexpected ways. But that has all been fixed and now this tool is a full replacement for our old Weight Copy Addon.
  • The weight Editor (for setting individual weights on single vertices) has been improved a LOT and made available in Edit Mode AND Weight Paint mode (it is located in the right properties sidebar in the 3d viewport):

    vertex_weights_panel_overview.png(1) Filters, (2) Select active vertex group, (3) Function bar
  • X mirror setting (in edit mode and Weight Paint mode) works in all cases where you edit or paint verts (interactive!).
  • Weight data can now be seen in edit Mode just like in Weight Paint mode (even with modifiers on the mesh) The cool thing is you can use all edit tools for selecting verts AND you can use the weight editor in X mirror mode ...
  • The documentation is 100% up to date and i believe now it is readable, see Blender's new Vertex Groups documentation and its 4 subsequent pages.

You could help improving ...

Everything i mentioned above should be available now on the Blender daily builds page (in the Official builds). And the documentation is already available online.

So you can grab a build, test the tools and check the documentation. And give us feedback so that when Blender 2.68 finally gets published in about 2 weeks, then we can be confident that the tools work as expected.

So what next ?

Some days ago we decided to go into a second round of improving Weight Tools for Blender 2.69... So, there is more to come.

A BIG Thank you to all supporters !

This was made possible by all of you who have actively supported our work over the last few years by purchasing our products or helping us in various other ways. So i finally could spend 3 months on working for Blender. And of course i have to thank all blender gurus whom i poked uncountable times for getting hints to get my tasks done. And a BIG thank You to Eleanora Newell who has kept the chat groups running all the time and solved all issues :)

A final Sidenote for Avastar users: Only a small part of Avastar hasmigrated to Blender, no worries! Avastar 1.0 will benefit from all of this.

And the story behind all of this ?

When i started 3 months ago i found the Blender weight tools where working in some odd ways. Apparent functionality did not work, or worked in unexpected ways, sometimes in unexpected locations, the documentation was odd/old/wrong/non existing... well just a mess.but don't get me wrong. The tools all work somehow and you can get used to them after a while. But it never worked in a satisfying way (for me). I always had to think about annoying workarounds...

So i decided to first document the existing Blender tools to understand the tools better. But while doing this i found more and more issues with the tools until i thought: "Better do this stuff in our own Addon..."

So i tried that route and started to improve our own weight tools. But again i soon ended up in a mess. It turned out that the Blender addon API is not fully finished for the functions we needed, wonky, instable... And then finally i gave up...

Well, of course i did NOT give up :), but i talked to some blender Gurus. And it turned out that one of the main Blender developers (Campbell Barton) had similar interests to get this stuff fixed, and we agreed that i will help him to work on the weight paint tools when he educates me how to "walk in Blender source code". Hey that was NO fun! but i think it was worth the effort. I hope...

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