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Author Topic: Joint animation in Milkshape?  (Read 4918 times)
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BlooM
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« on: June 27, 2007, 10:13:58 pm »

Hi Marvine

Would you be willing to explain how the animation on the joints work in Milkshape?
I cant figure it out....and would like to experiment with them.
I always go ingame to see how they operate on a uvmappedoutfit but it takes so much time..
thank you

BlooM
« Last Edit: June 27, 2007, 10:17:46 pm by BlooM » Logged

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wes_h
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« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2007, 09:55:03 pm »

You can do this only with recent UniMesh body mesh imports (where the joints look like connected lines instead of just circles).

Save your work, of course, as an .ms3d file. Now, on the bottom right corner is a button that says "ANIM" on it. This toggles you in and out of animation mode.

So, press the button in. Now, go to the joints tab and select "show skeleton". Now double-click on the joint labelled r_thigh. You should see the bones for the entire right leg change color. In animation mode, when you select a joint, you select all the "child" joints, too.

Now, click on the "Model" tab and pick "Rotate". Select "origin" and "local" in the place below the buttons.

Make one of your views the right projection (via a mouse right click). Click down in that window (left mouse click) and drag the mouse to the left a little. The entire right leg should bend at the top of the thigh and move out like a straight leg kick.

That is the basic animation. On an item like a knee, you can bend it and zoom in to see if your assignments look good. Remember that the game and MilkShape will animate the body mesh slightly different, but mostly alike.

To make a playful animation you make a set of movements, and then in the animation menu set a keyframe. You would advance the slider at the bottom (if you do not see this, you can select it in the options somewhere). You would set another set of joint positions and set a new keyframe. By creating the movements in a logical, sequential manner you can make the mesh do things like a kick or dance, and save these as a .ms3d file and play them back, even capturing them as an AVI.

Or, you can export them as a half-life .SMD file and use Miche's animation converter (available in a test thread at MTS2) to place them in the game. This is not simple or easy, but it has been done.

There is a tutorial in MilkShape help about the animation. Parts 1 and 2 are largely irrelevant, as the UniMesh importer creates the bones and assignments from the Maxis game file automatically. But Part 3 of teh tutorial will give you a pictorial view of animating a mesh.

<* Wes *>
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BlooM
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« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2007, 10:12:04 am »

Woot, Thank you soooo much Wes!!!!!!
This is soooo C000llll


* Thnx Wes.jpg (104.96 KB, 833x733 - viewed 402 times.)
« Last Edit: July 01, 2007, 10:17:43 am by BlooM » Logged

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wes_h
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« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2007, 09:18:41 pm »

I think it is pretty cool, too.

You can add a head (hair and face) and animate them at the same time. And you can add textures from the game. MilkShape now supports the "skin and cloth" (transparent clothing arreas show underlying skin) texturing. Just export the textures from SimPE as .PNG files, create a material and add the texture file (or two of them), and then apply the material to the group.

You can string movements into whole animations, and capture them as AVIs. Adding a textured plane behind the Sim would make any backdrop you want.

Props? You can import and texture the mesh for any objects you want (limited by system RAM and MilkShape's 64,000 vertex limit).

<* Wes *>


* skinnedgalv.jpg (22.99 KB, 513x480 - viewed 388 times.)
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BlooM
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« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2007, 04:16:47 pm »

Wow!!!
I used simclothing before to get the uvmap corrected somtimes and the skintone, didn't know bout the transparancy tho, incredible!
Guess, i just start to use it to correct boneassignements.. and work my way in i hope Tongue
Thnx again Wes
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Warlokk
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« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2007, 05:09:40 pm »

Oh my, this is exactly what I have been needing for a while now... thanks Wes!  Cheesy
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wes_h
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« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2007, 09:34:35 pm »

I didn't want to spoil all the fun, but at the time I made that post I also had a working animation exporter in testing. It is now released, and posted at MTS2 in the Animation and ANIM files forum. You can now make custom body (and object) mesh animations, and export them into the game.

The animations can be made and retained in .ms3d models. Animations are, in general, only a list of skeleton movements, and so would work essentially the same on a DD mesh or an A one. That is not to say that the runtime appearance would be the same, some arm movements that would be fine for the A mesh might appear humorous on the DD mesh.

<* Wes *>
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Warlokk
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« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2007, 09:55:23 pm »

Thanks Wes... for now I'm working on a more detailed base mesh, with a whole bunch of extra verts that I was having a heck of a time getting the bone assignments right... this little tidbit of info made my testing and fixing a whole lot easier.  Unless we can add bones though, I don't really have much in mind for animations just yet.  Now if we could add bones, and use them to simulate gravity effects, well that would just be amazing...
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wes_h
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« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2007, 10:29:34 pm »

You do not need to add bones.

You should look at Marvine's demo of the effects of adding some partial bone assignments to the breathe_trans bone and animating it. Since this is an open forum, all I will say is that it allows some of the mesh that formerly moved statically with the rest of the upper torso to be able to mimic the effects of inertia as the gal dances.

It requires a custom animation (the first is written and available), a controller package (there is one for it included) AND a mesh that has the assignments remade. When done right, the mesh plays in the game just like any other, and the animation works on any mesh with no adverse effects, but when the two are combined, it is, um, interesting.

As the creator of a significant number of gal meshes with varying features that would benefit from this by your merely revising the bone assignments over a portion of the mesh, I think you might like to look at it.

<* Wes *>
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Warlokk
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« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2007, 11:31:31 pm »

Sounds fantastic... I always suspected something could be done without adding to the skeleton, but had no idea how... I will definitely look into this, it could really take things to a whole new level... Cheesy
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Star Ranger4
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« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2007, 12:28:43 am »

Darn.  I can only see one problem with all of this.

I'm too cheep to shell out for milkshape; and while blender will IMPORT ms3d files, it wont export them...
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Warlokk
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« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2007, 02:19:14 pm »

Aww, go on, it's only a $20 program, and it really is worth the investment... Cheesy
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BlooM
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« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2007, 07:59:16 am »

absolutly
But blender imports/exports smd files, that not enough?
http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=248075
« Last Edit: September 20, 2007, 08:04:11 am by BlooM » Logged

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Star Ranger4
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« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2007, 02:32:51 pm »

SMD?  I didnt know....
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BeosBoxBoy
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« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2007, 04:45:11 pm »

There is SMD and then there is SMD, in the same way there are MDLs and then there are MDLs.  The file extension is no grantsafe that all the data you want will be retained, just like saving a document in word 5 format will rip huge chunks of data out of a Word 2007 document, even though both formats use the DOC file extension.

As far as I have been able to discern, not all 3D software seems to have the same file format version support; for instace even though MilkShape supports SMD and LWO formats, these are much older than are currently used by the software that uses the native format.  So be cautious when you look at the 3D software's supported file types.  Often times software may strip out much needed data, such as MilkShape 3D reducing SMDs to single bone assignments, which can be a right glorious chomp in the small and dangling parts if you are not expecting it.
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