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Avatar Morph Groups in Mesh?


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Ok been looking over this forum trying to see if anyone else has asked this or tried this and couldn't find anything.

After going over a few of the rigged mesh tutorials and videos I could find, most of them involve using some kind of plugin or some such to import into blender an SL avatar (either a default one or a modified one).  Right now i'm using something called a wiz daxtor plugin (the demo version) to work with the default female avatar.  And I noticed that atop all the bone weight vertex groups there are a ton of vertex groups that look like the shape morph groups for editing your shape in SL.

Now all the tutorials I've seen have said to delete all the vertex morph groups except the bone weight groups (the ones that start with m), but i was wondering, what happens if you don't?  Is there a way to keep those morph groups to make your rigged mesh adjust with an avatar shape as the wearer edits their shape, or is mesh not able to handle something this complicated?

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As of now, rigged mesh adjusts only with the avatar bones. So the apperance sliders which affect the bones, will affect the imported rigged  mesh too. However the sliders which affect avatar morphs have no effect at all to the imported rigged mesh.

Therefore all the tutorials tell to remove the shape morph groups as they indeed have no effect at all on the imported mesh.

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In my tutorial, I have the user delete the morphs for the purpose of cleaning and normalizing weights in a later process. Those extra vertex groups in the avatar.blend muddy that process. However, you can keep another copy of the avatar with morphs handy. You could use that copy for making custom shapes in your clothing if you offer a tailoring service.

Sadly, you can't directly use that morph information in SL because the uploader doesn't recognize morph data. A rigged avatar only responds to skeletal morphs. All the other shape morphs (the ones you that you are talking about that you see in your modeler) get ignored.

NOTE: If you are using Blender 2.59 and the new "bone weight copy" script, there is an option to copy weights just assigned to bones while ignoring those morphs. That way, you can leave the morph data in the shape keys of the avatar yet only copy over the weights associated with bones to the clothing. It is win-win.

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Thank you, Your tutorials were among the more helpful that are out there.  Though there was one more thing I was quite confused on as far as the vertex groups.  I believe it was your tutorials that suggested that you needed to create empty vertex groups so that there was a group for all the bones (toe bones particularly).  But I've seen other tutorials that have said so long as the bones are present in the skeleton you don't need a group in the object to correspond with them.  I haven't uploaded anything rigged yet, working on my first rigged avatar now, but I would like to know which is neccessary.

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Well, in the beginning of beta, you could just use the vertex groups in the item. For example, if you made a shirt, you didn't need to include vertex groups for bones in the head and lower body. Then, there came a time when the uploader refused to upload items that didn't have the 21 crucial vertex groups. When I made the tutorial, you had to have all 21. Otherwise, the model wouldn't upload. The uploader has gone back and forth on this issue during mesh development.

I just ran a test with a shirt exported from Blender 2.59 (official blender.org version). One shirt had a partial rig. The other had all 21 vertex groups. Currently, I'm using  mesh-development viewer 241117  for Windows. In this version, both shirts uploaded without a problem. Of course, if you use all the vertex groups associated with the bones it doesn't hurt. The land impact (formerly PE) number was the same for both items.

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