Creating animated mechanical characters

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Michael_GR
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Creating animated mechanical characters

Post by Michael_GR » Tue Jun 19, 2007 2:07 pm

I want to create mechanical looking animations - giant robots, for example. In 3DS max, I can build my model from a number of objects and animate them with IK or just rotation and translation keys. However, this kind of animation can't easily be done with a skin modifier which is the only way I currently know of to export animations to Ogre.
Is there any way I can export this kind of animation to Ogre? Is there something I can do inside Max to translate this kind of animation to pose or skin animation?
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xavier
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Post by xavier » Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:25 pm

We have giant walking gun robots in our game, done in Max using Biped and Skin modifiers and exported to Ogre and working fine. What makes you think this isn't possible?
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inneractive
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Post by inneractive » Tue Jun 19, 2007 10:33 pm

I agree, you should have no problems using bones for animating a mechanical model. Just do not weight your verts to multiple bones.
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Post by Rackle » Wed Jun 20, 2007 2:15 pm

I'm below a novice; I've heard some of the words but have not done anything yet. I know the words "IPO curve" and the Blender Wiki talks about them also; I know it's not Max but these applications perform many similar tasks. Of interest is the "Curve Interpolation" section, where the Blender default is to use the smooth Bezier curve motion. However it can be set to Linear. In the case of a mechanical entity this may be what you're looking for. Humans and animals have smooth, fluid animations whereas mechanical robots may have jerky motion.

Hope this helps.
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ahmedali
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Post by ahmedali » Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:55 pm

in 3dsmax9, I did this by the option "select by element" in Skin Modifier. Which allows you to select all the vertices in an element. Then you can select all the elements of your Mechanical limb, enable Rigid option and set weight to 1.
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Post by jacmoe » Wed Jun 20, 2007 10:01 pm

I can't help thinking that maybe he's after segmented models instead?

I am really not much of an expert in this, but I assume that you would use the same skeleton and attach/skin different models on it.
Chest, arm, leg, tail, sensory outfit, oil drill, ...

And then use Entity::shareSkeletonInstanceWith(anotherEntity) in Ogre.
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inneractive
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Post by inneractive » Wed Jun 20, 2007 10:32 pm

It sounds like you are now wondering how to create rigid movement using linear interpolation between keyframes. I am sure there is a way to do this. I have only animated in XSI and Maya, so I am not familiar with Max, but I did a quick internet search and linear interpolation is mentioned as an option in the Max curve editor. You will have to check your documentation.
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Post by Melkor » Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:27 am

Well ODE can help with that.
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Post by irishlostboy » Fri Jun 22, 2007 8:11 pm

ahmedali wrote:in 3dsmax9, I did this by the option "select by element" in Skin Modifier. Which allows you to select all the vertices in an element. Then you can select all the elements of your Mechanical limb, enable Rigid option and set weight to 1.
just want to clarify; you have a mesh, right. then you have the skin midifier on that. now, you do have bones dont you? you are not meant to animate the vertices (which is what it sounds like you are doing to me). you animate the bones, which are linked to the mesh through the skin modifier.
if what i am saying makes sense, what you need is a basic rigging tutorial, not an exporting tutorial.
i hope this is of help.
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