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Creating with deformers in mind / building around base avatar


Sei Minuet
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I'll be brief! I wrote a rather lengthy post and then clicked the little spell check button, got an error, and had to start all over. Awesome.

I've tried most--if not all--of the skeletons members of the community have graciously provided and found I have the most luck with Reed Steamroller's skeleton. However this skeleton does not fit the Ruth model exactly. I found that I had to keep guessing and nudging everything forward a bit so it would line up properly on Ruth in-world. I also noticed when trying to line that model up to the skeleton the eyes on the skeleton cannot line up properly with the eyes on Ruth without scaling things non-uniformly.

I could try to muck around with the skeleton and get it to line up, but I'd rather have something exact. It's been suggested to use Wiz Daxter's plugin, but that does not work with my software (I did test that). I use Maya 2010 x64, and am severely against attempting to work in Blender (no offense to the wonderful Blender creators out there) since I end up wrestling with the UI and going into a battle frenzy.

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I've used the avatar skeleton recomended by Gaia Clary and used in Ashasekayi's Youtube video tutorials. I wrote Second Life Mesh Clothing Tutorial to help people through those and as an index for me. They seem to work.

There are currently some problems with what has to be included in a rigged mesh and what can be left out. Seems a bug that was fixed snuck back in. That came up in this weeks Content/Mesh UG meeting. The Lindens are looking to see what happened.

Also, many of the avatar models around for SL are missing a couple of bones. That causes a problem.

Also, many of us were building clothes that were for our modified avatar. They were shaped to a specific avatar shape. With the arrival of Qarl's mesh deformer that changes. As best I can tell the base avatar from SL as is included in the viewer is what Domino Marama used for his Blender file. It is also what Qarl based his deformer on. That is the same one Gaia started with, AFAIK. So, Domino's or Gaia's should work for building with the deformer in mind.

Trying to get an exact fit for a replacement avatar that matches eye position should only require that you match the vertices in the new mesh with the vertices around the eyes of the SL avatar.

If you scale the bones, every thing moves. I don't see how you'll get it to fit. Matching the weights to the SL avatar weights would seem to be the path to try. Otherwise I think it would through off the scaling and destroy the fit between the new mesh and eyes.. But, that is beyond what I've been experiementing with... so may be not.

 

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Finding a skeleton that matched the base avatar, Ruth, was what I had in mind. I have no problems rigging or uploading, but simply was unable to find something that matched Ruth's shape. Somehow I missed Gaia's skeleton—that seems to be exactly what I was needing. I would've loved to have built around my own shape, but the plug-in that exported that and the skeleton combined didn't work for my software, and with the deformer project on the way it was easier to plan for the future and build around Ruth instead. Thank you for pointing out that other skeleton. I have a folder crammed full of different skeletons I've found but somehow managed to miss that one.

I tested by rigging and exporting Ruth's chest and then attaching it to Ruth's chest--I put a Ruth on my Ruth because I like Ruthing while I'm Ruthed. Ahem. Another thing to keep in mind for those who work with Maya: check your import settings if you can't get the SL uploader to see your mesh as a rigged mesh. Import defaults will append the name of the file you are importing plus a colon at the front of every bone name.

edit x3: multiple formatting failures. I'm awesome.

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