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Rigging Quadruped in Maya Needed


Vendetta Fhang
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Hello,

So i've got the bento skeleton and my mesh in maya, i've only loosely moved the bones into place and did the binding. Mostly so i dont spend hours only to find out it isn't working because I did a similar thing in the past. 

With that said, when i go to upload, i see the object one way but when i wear it the mesh crumples in on itself. Pictures below. Not sure what's happening since the joints all seem to be in the right place and displaying properly in the preview upload section. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 6.07.24 PM.png

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 6.07.52 PM.png

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 6.08.01 PM.png

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 6.12.43 PM.png

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If you-re working on a random scale, as it appears from your grid size, it's too big for the uploader to get what you want.

Moreover, SL requires rigged items to be oriented Z up, as the original avatar does. Your scene shows you're using Y axis up. Because of this, i think there also might be a group node, that contains the skeleton, with some scale and/or rotations on it, due to the import compensations.

Restart fresh new, change the world orientation to Z up first. Then import your avatar, it will come in VERY tiny. Adjust the wolf mesh down to a reasonable size in comparison to the skeleton. When the wolf will be of the relative size you want it in regard of the avatar dimension, then you can move the joints around and do your stuff. Keep in mind that each joint can't move more than 5 meters units away form the avatar center( the hips location in standard TPose)

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Thanks for your earlier advice. I made the changes but It still keeps crumbling in on itself. I'm not sure if there is something that i'm missing prior to binding. I even tested it without moving a single bone from the imported rig and it did the same thing.

The steps I took.

-create new scene and make Z up

-import rig file that is provided from SL wiki

-Unbind the female shape and deleting the mesh

-import new mesh and scale to size

-begin moving joints into position.

-Bind skin and export.

Is there a specific bone that shouldn't be moved at all? Could it be an issue with my model? I appreciate your help

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Screen Shot 2018-03-18 at 6.13.53 AM.png

Edited by Vendetta Fhang
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Everything looks like it's squished in... i'm wondering if you're using the Collision volume bones too? If so, what you're incurring is a scale bind pose problem. SL avatars use collision volume bones that, at their default state, are scaled very tiny and rotated a few degrees. When you freeze transformations, you lose those data for a neat zero rotation and scale at 1. Collision volume bones are in the scale of 0.09 so imagine the shrinking effect it has from a scale of 1, just to render the idea.

Generally, quadruped characters don't have an actual use for collision volume bones at all, their shape is too far from the human stance and editing the shape may turn out to be not practical. I'd suggest to try removing those bones (easily identifiable by their names, all in upper case, ie PELVIS, HEAD, NECK etc.) first and bind again. 

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So I started playing around some more, I did remove the collision bones and that didn't make a difference.

So, i looked at what else i could change that i hadn't tried and the obvious choice.... clicking the 'use joint position' option on the upload. I have been selecting this for every upload and when i didn't, i got exactly what I was expecting. Will this be an issue moving forward or does it simply not matter for this purpose?

5aafd9667af51_ScreenShot2018-03-19at5_33_00AM.png.867b71682672c66b43bdbcb1fc5c256d.png

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So I went and did just a simple animation and when i brought it in world, nothing changed with the distortion. The bones remained in the standard human position and the animation itself seems to be happening on the wrong axis. So i'm guessing that i need the 'use join position' checked when i import... 

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Yes i didn't mention that as i was assuming the first issue to overcome was the scale. Yes you do need to check that option on upload.

About what concerns animation, as you say it's coming in using the wrong axis, you should expand a bit more on the tool you used. If you're trying to export a bvh for SL from the rigging stage skeleton, its orientations are all wrong for the bvh standard. As odd as it sounds, rigging, bvh animation and stored animations use different standards, too long here to recap.

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24 minutes ago, Vendetta Fhang said:

The animation i’ve come to realize is due to the fact that for that portion, i need Y up and X forward before i begin animating.

That part is actually wrong in the wiki. The standard there is set as Y axis up, +Z axis forward, not X . Plus, it doesn't mention that the scale of the avatar needs to be 39.37 in order to comply to the scale the uploader is expecting. At this point advertisement time xD

I made a plug in for Maya exactly for this purpose. It supports creation of an animation skeleton for both BVH (using the scripts you have already for animation export) and the native SL internal .anim format. It comes packed with other functions to speed up the rigging process, take a look at my signature ;) beneath my posts (you may need to enable signatures viewing in your profile settings)

Edited by OptimoMaximo
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This is a good grief. I just downloaded the avatars again, but everything looks ok to me.

 Screenshot_1.png.3edf4a96c2f53bfa1408ea8a9b368355.png

I would think something happened to your download. Try getting the files anew. Also, it may be worth noting that the Collada exporter found among Maya's available format, is not the best way to go. I achieve 100% accuracy exporting to FBX first, then using FBX Converter i get a Collada file that truly complies to the general Collada format (with no risk of Maya interventions and twists). It is also WAY faster than Maya even in case of high polygon counts.

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Everything just hates me apparently.....

Im not sure if Maya 2018 is the problem or not but i exported fbx, brought it into the converter and it wont convert. 

If i select DAE, it doesn't do anything when i click convert, If i select obj then it populates a txt file that says that it couldn't convert because the file is corrupted.... v.v

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Alright, make sure, in the export window, that you're using the FBX version 2011 (the version that was used during mesh development). It's the plug in version you're exporting with: the fbx converter last release was 2013 and it's why, i think, the converter says the file is corrupted

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Alright, i went over this again and yes, you're right, i didn't have the option box checked.

I went on and tried the same file from yesterday, and i have a crunching on the abdomen/chest area. Arms work fine though.

This is most likely due to the additional spine bones in the Bento skeleton, not being weighted to the default avatar mesh, but still present in the hierarchy definition. So basically it doesn't know where those spine joints go on the mesh, defaulting their location to their parent in the hierarchy definition and thus moving the hierarchy downwards like you're showing.

In my opinion, you can go ahead with this skeleton. Suggestions:

  • Remove manually those joints you know you're not going to use beforehand (like the spine joints or the fingers);
  • when shaping is done, select the mPelvis joint, then go to Select menu ->hierarchy and freeze transformations
  • then go to skeleton menu -> joint orient ->option box to view the options, tick on "orient to world" checkbox, up on top (it greys out everything else) and apply

this now should be a compliant skeleton and shouldn't give trouble.

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I made MyAniMATE exactly with this in mind: any custom skeleton shape is fine. It generates animation skeleton in either BVH or anim format, starting from your rigging skeleton, bringing also the character mesh with it. The plug in itself doesn't autorig your custom shape though, as many features can't be procedurally applied in a reliable fashion (like IK handles and pole vectors, there's no way to determine the correct location in regard to custom elbows and knees location/assumed rotation angle). But it comes with a few custom functions to create animation controllers quickly and easily, and to create parent constraints on them in bulk instead of doing it one-by-one, digging in the outliner.

Overview video, at initial relase (i was still developing the .anim exporter) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nYvU6IT8kc

a more in depth one, with my horrible voice https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrnjoCzC5GY but at least there are explanations here :)

It also comes with the secondary plug in i made, Builders' Mate, in case you want to build an up to scale scene in Maya but the rebuilding stage in SL is too much of a bother for you xD  video here with a very simple model https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQXi4gCNXSM

A new update is currently pending, as i have to deal with RL work right now. However it's fully functional as it is. Feel free to contact me inworld, should you have any more questions.

 

 

 

 

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