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Bone Controller [RELEASED]

Discussion in 'Assets and Asset Store' started by Tryz, Feb 16, 2015.

  1. Tryz

    Tryz

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    The Bone Controller is an extensible IK/FK tool for controlling the bones of your characters.

    It not only gives you access to the bones within a skinned mesh, but allows you to create 'pseudo' bones from static meshes. With these bones, you can procedurally animate your characters, create motors that move your characters limbs, and react to the environment.

    Similar to the Motion Controller, the Bone Controller comes with several motors you can enable as needed. Use the existing motors or create your own custom motors.


    Features:
    • Extracts bone information from any skinned mesh
    • Create bones from static meshes (no vertex weighting)
    • Apply joint constraints to the bones
    • Apply bone colliders for collision detection
    • Pre-built motors for use with your characters
    • Ability to create custom motors to drive bone rotations
    • Physics based bone chain dragging (pony tails, tails, ropes, etc)
    • Standardized bone orientation for all models
    • Blends with existing animations
    and much more...


    Current bone motors:
    • Look-at motor
    • Swing-at motor
    • Foot placement motor
    • Bone chain drag motor
    • Limb reach motor
    • Pose motor
    • Finger pose motor
    • Impact motor
    • Rotation motor

    Get it from the Asset Store

    Check out the web-demo (subject to change)

    Check out the Quick-Start guide (subject to change)
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2015
    Navid and DMeville like this.
  2. Zaddo67

    Zaddo67

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    Wow, I just started investigating IK systems and saw your post, great timing :)

    Do you have an ETA?
    Does it work with Unity Free?
    Do you have an idea on price range?
    How does this compare to Final IK?
     
  3. Tryz

    Tryz

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    haha... awesome! Great questions...

    1. Should be out next week. I'm just finishing up documentation and testing.

    2. Yep!

    3. I'm going to release as 'beta' first (at a reduced price). I'm thinking $50, but don't hold hold me to it.

    4. Final IK is great, but I felt like there needed to be something that was more extensible and built as plug-n-play for characters. So the motors you enable are all built to make PCs and NPCs more reactionary and believable. With the Bone Controller, you can also attach new bones and even create bones from other static meshes. This is great for pony tails, tails, turrets, animating objects in the scene, etc.

    The Bone Controller provides a framework for creating other motors and standardizing bones across all models. What I mean by that last part is that some artists create bones along the 'up' vector, some the 'forward' vector, etc. The Bone Controller wraps all of that to make working with IK/FK easier and consistent.

    I hope that helps. :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2015
    Zaddo67 likes this.
  4. ZJP

    ZJP

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  5. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hey ZJP,

    You mean like this?


    The Bone Controller isn't a character controller. It provides access to bones and motors for manipulating those bones. How you move or orient the character is the job of the character controller.

    My guess is a lot don't do it (including the Motion Controller) because Unity's character controller doesn't rotate like that.

    Now, if you do have a character controller and scene where the character goes upside down, send it my way. The Bone Controller should work because it doesn't care about character's orientation (I need to add this to my testing! :rolleyes:)


    Great point though...

    If anyone has a character model they want to see if the Bone Controller can work with, send the character my way and I'll use it as a test.
     
    Gekigengar and hopeful like this.
  6. ZJP

    ZJP

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    Yes.

    I'll try to send you a simple scene (made with Unity Standard Asset) this week.. :D
     
    Tryz likes this.
  7. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    Have you ever seen this video? -


    He shows how to write a character controller that points the character at the gravity attractor (center of a planet) while the character walks around the surface.

    ------------

    Ootii - Great, more Ootii assets I NEED to buy. Does it work on Unity free version (edit - I missed that you already answered that above)? It might be a while because I already have Final IK and it supports quadrupeds, but you guys have a great way of packaging your assets to make it easy for beginners like me to use your stuff.

    Your demo is pretty great, but on the limb reach if you toggle the motor off and then back on the human's arms go into a T-pose instead of following the effector (but the leg goes back to following).
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2015
  8. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Great movie!

    Awesome MIK3K! I'm glad I got you hooked... hehehe. Yep, it will work with the free version.

    When you say quadrupeds, do you mean 3-bone-legs vs. humans' 2-bone-legs?

    Thanks for the find in the Limb Reach demo. I see it too. :eek:
     
  9. hopeful

    hopeful

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    Not sure if these things are related to Bone Controller purposes, but will there be:

    A) ragdoll stuff?
    B) floor to wall to ceiling walking?
     
  10. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    Tryz - Final IK has a "grounder" that works with bipeds and quadrupeds (all 4 legs for animals). It really is a fantastic asset that I'm in a little over my head with but will figure it out. Here's the grounder demo vid in action -


    I don't even know if I "need" this asset, but you guys do some great work and really want this to play with your other assets. I really need to quit visiting this forum. Now I'm back up to 3 must have assets on my list. I guess I picked the right time to learn Unity just as there is an explosion of so much high quality stuff on the asset store.
     
    hopeful likes this.
  11. b4c5p4c3

    b4c5p4c3

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    Seems interesting
     
  12. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hopeful,

    A) Not on the list for the initial release, but I've been thinking about it. All the parts are there.

    B) Isn't really part of the Bone Controller. It goes along with ZJP's question. I'll test to make sure the Bone Controller can handle it (it should), but that's really a character controller functionality.


    MIK3K,

    That video is awesome. To be honest, I wasn't sure if they were doing anything more with Final IK since the last update was Sept. But that quadruped video...nice.

    I really take the comments to heart. I've been coding a long time and it's nice to hear that people really like my tools.


    Thanks b4c5p4c3!
     
  13. Teila

    Teila

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    I have finally gotten my Ooti Adventure Rig camera to work with some local help. Ooti's support was awesome but I had project issues. I am eyeing the motion pack and now this. If you can make this work with quadrupeds, I would buy it immediately. We are having serious issues with our animals sliding everywhere. I could buy Final IK but it looks complicated and I know Ooti will document and provide support.

    Any chance you will add that, Ooti? :)
     
  14. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hey Teila,

    I'm sorry it took a while to get the Adventure Rig up, but I'm glad it's working for you.

    Short answer... yes. Right after I launch the beta (hopefully this week), the first thing I will do is add support for quadrupeds...because they are cool.

    Now, let me get a little geeky...


    Today the Bone Controller supports foot placement for "2 bone" legs. It doesn't matter how many of these legs exist...2, 4, 8, etc. So, the little robot spider is a quadruped that is supported today.

    When we say quadruped, I think what people are meaning is the "3 bone" leg. In the case of the dinosaur, he's a biped that I don't support foot placement right now.

    So, my plan will be to support "3 bone" legs right after launch. If you want to put 4 of those on a creature (like a dog), that will be perfectly fine. :)

    Let me know if that makes sense. Also, if anyone has a dog, cat, or other "3 bone" quadruped I can test with, please send it my way. :D


    To your last comment about documentation and support...yes...without hesitation. I really care about providing quality assets and making the experience good. I'm a one-man-show, so I'm not perfect...but I'll work to make things right. The fact you said what you said really makes me proud. Thank you.
     
  15. Teila

    Teila

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    Great, Ooti! Yes, I meant a 4 legged creature with three bones, at least I THINK they have three bones in the legs. I will have to check. At the very least they have two bone legs and you are saying this works with that already?

    My animals are all from the asset store so not sure I can share or I would. We are still in prototype mode but the sliding animals is really bugging me and while our followers seem to be okay with it, I am not.

    Since I have no one here at the moment to answer my questions (at home I mean), do you think IK on the animals will help with the sliding? They tend to run and then slide rather than stop and even while standing still in an idle animation they slide slightly, especially on a slope. I am quite a newbie to IK unfortunately.

    Ooti, none of us are perfect. All we can is try and you certainly do. :)
     
  16. Tryz

    Tryz

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    I'll grab some animals from the store (like I did the Allosaurus from Tibor) and see what I find.

    Unfortunately, IK won't typically help with sliding. The character controller typically handles position, rotation, animations, and more global aspects of the character. IK is more about finesse and realism. It takes a bone and gets it to just the right spot when the animation itself couldn't.

    In your case, it sounds like the character controller is sliding based on the ground incline. Typically there is a setting that says "don't slide if the incline is less than 10-degrees" or something.

    I don't think you are, but if you are using the Motion Controller email me at tim@ootii.com and we'll get it worked out.
     
  17. Teila

    Teila

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    These are not player characters but NPC characters, just animals to run around and add atmosphere. :) Maybe IK of any form won't help in that case.

    There is a controller on the animals though and I will take a look at that, or rather get Ryan to do it.

    Thanks! Still want this for my PCs though since they could use a little IK.
     
    Tryz likes this.
  18. Licarell

    Licarell

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    My character has extra bones for the knees and elbows... can I put procedural rotation constraints so that with the IK it will rotate the knee and elbow bone 50% between the upper and lower leg?

    I also have twisty bones for the upper and lower arms and upper and lower legs, can I have rotation constraints as well with those that only apply to one axis?

    Thanks!
     
  19. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hey Licarell,

    For the first question, I don't fully understand. But, I'll try to answer...

    With each bone (regardless if it's humanoid or not), you can set joint limits/constraints. After the motors run and blend with the current animations, the limits ensure the bone rotations don't go outside of a specific swing or twist. One bone's limits don't know about another one.

    In my "Look At" motor, I do create a bone chain: spine -> chest -> neck -> head. Along this chain, the spine only rotates 15% to the goal, the chest 30% to the goal, the neck 60% to the goal, the head 100% to the goal. I'm simplifying, but I think it shows you that a custom motor could do what you want.

    For the second question, yes. (that one was much easier)

    Let me know if you think I misunderstood the first one.
     
  20. Licarell

    Licarell

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    No I think your look at is close to what I want to do.
    A more detailed description...

    Say my elbow bone is placed behind the elbow joint right where the elbow bone would be, and for the knee forward of the joint where the kneecap would be.

    When the arm bends the elbow bone is attached to the upper arm bone but inherits 50% of the lower arms rotation. It's the same for the knee bone, it's attached to the upper leg but it inherits 50% of the lower leg rotation.

    I do this to preserve volume in my knees and elbows.
     
  21. ZJP

    ZJP

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    I have no trouble with the walking thing. But, most of placement foot/ik tools i've tried can't works correctly in 'gravity' situation. Maybe is a problem with the method used to detect the ground.
     
  22. Tryz

    Tryz

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    @Licarell,
    That makes sense. In this case, you'd want a custom bone motor. It could read the raw animation data or pose data and then apply the 50% as needed.

    @ZJP,
    In my case, I'm using ray casting from the mid to the foot. So being inverted should be fine. I do plan on putting together a little demo using Unity's minebot (the spider looking bot). I'll put him up on the ceiling (upside down) and make sure it works (or at least understand why it doesn't).
     
  23. Tryz

    Tryz

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  24. DMeville

    DMeville

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    This looks fantastic! Can't wait to get my hands on this!
     
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  25. Licarell

    Licarell

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    So if the IK where moving the arm or leg then the bone would rotate procedurally like it should?
     
  26. ZJP

    ZJP

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    Nice. That said, I'll post a simple scene that will help you test your tool. ;)
     
    Tryz likes this.
  27. Tryz

    Tryz

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    @Licarell, Yes, if a bone motor were causing the arm or leg to move using IK, the motor would spread the desired rotation down to the other bones. We'd code the custom motor to do that.

    Just to give you and idea of the complexity... The true code of the Pose Motor (for posing any bone of any model) is 50 lines long. It's pretty short.

    If you want to shoot an email to tim@ootii.com with your model, I could test with it and maybe show you what I mean.
     
  28. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    Hey Tryz - The quadruped grounder that Final IK does is more like combining 2 bipeds with any number of legs per "hub" or pelvis (I think that's right but you are talking to a noob here lol). A dog in my scene only has 2 leg bones per leg but uses the quadruped grounder. Final IK also does any number of individual legs like a demo they have of a 6-legged mech spider but that is more like how you are talking about 4 individual legs and I believe doesn't give a realistic quadruped (4-legs) like an animal but more like a machine - that's why the grounder IK is so great.

    Partel is the developer and just a brilliant guy. His thread here explains it a lot better than I could and has tons of vids showing everything - http://forum.unity3d.com/threads/fu...uch-more-about-to-hit-the-asset-store.217693/

    I like Final IK but see a real market for Ootii's bone controller for people that don't need all the stuff Final IK does or in my case might be easier to use in their games. Final IK is a high end program like 3DS Max is for modeling and animating that is great in the hands of someone that really knows how to use all that power but might be a little overwhelming if you only have a few things in your game and don't want to get too deep into IK.
     
  29. Tryz

    Tryz

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    @MIK3K : Thanks for all the info.

    I sort of hate comparing it to Final IK's grounder because I don't want to come off like I'm stealing his code/ideas. I don't own Final IK, but I've been through the forums and looked at the online docs. Everything I've seen says it's great and the developer is awesome.

    That said, I do want to create a useful tool for characters (including quadrupeds). So how much of a dog (as an example) is controlled by the character controller...position, rotation, incline, animations, etc? How much is controlled by the Bone Controller (meaning IK)? I'm assuming there's still a base "dog run" animation and the goal of the motor is to make sure all the feet are positioned on the ground and the legs are bent in a realistic manner... not to replace the animation...although it could.

    This seemed to work well in the Foot Placement Motor demo I link to.

    This is definitely interesting...
     
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  30. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    This IK stuff is so over my head, but yes it seems to work the same as IK with animation and adjusting the feet to match the terrain, but it also seems to align the whole body to the terrain also in a natural way which is a level beyond bipeds. And I don't think you are taking Final IK's ideas - it is IK after all that has been around forever. He made it available with the free version of Unity and from what I understand it is better than the IK in the pro version of Unity (limbs don't twist over into themselves if set up correctly) - plus he has a multitude of different IK (aim, full body, multiple limbs, grounder both biped and quadruped, interactions, etc.). I look at your asset as making it maybe a little more user friendly for the 90% of IK that people need.

    Actually, my only reason to mention your post on quadrupeds is just my understanding that this might not be trivial (new programming term for me!) to do.

    My own problems with Final IK are probably more animation/controller than the IK itself that seems to be working fine in my scene, but I have a lot of learning just to get a character controller working properly even without the IK. Maybe I can get your motion controller working as a base. I am looking forward to buying this bone controller asset anyway because I learn best by seeing the examples in these assets and how the smart people do things.

    And I don't want to diminish your asset at all. To me it's like getting a license to drive and getting handed the keys to a 500 hp monster (Final IK) or a 250 hp car that does everything I need and is a little easier to drive. I have the monster but it might be a little too much car for me right now.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2015
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  31. dibdab

    dibdab

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    looks good.
    is there any animation sampling integrated? would it work without animations, or lerping of bones to an animation frame (for ragdoll get-up and such)?
     
  32. Zaddo67

    Zaddo67

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    If all I want to do is have IK on my standard bi-ped characters feet. After I set the root transform, how much more configuration is required before my characters feet start adjusting to uneven terrain?
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2015
  33. twobob

    twobob

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    I have finalIK, and yes the dev is a super nice guy.
    Yes it does quad, bi and other various grounding maneuvers. (like standing on crazy procedural shapes, pictured)
    DogTricks.JPG
    Assuming this is a lightweight version of that it will indeed be a great asset to do some of the things that are missing from motion controller. Hand over Hand ropes; Reaching out to apparatus; Steps; Uneven flooring; and so forth.

    One real concern is the time taken to do the solves. Yes, it is completely "Doable" to solve a few feet in under 17ms.
    add 40 NPC's onto that and a game, now you have a challenge.

    Will be watching with interest.
     
  34. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Awesome question...
    For a normal humanoid: 2 to 3 clicks.

    I'll be posting some videos once I finish the documentation.
     
  35. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hey Dibdad,

    I think I understand what you mean by "animation sampling", but let me know if I'm off...

    It does merge with existing animations. You can control the "weight" of each motor, each bone, and the whole system. So, you can say "override the existing animation" or "blend with the existing animation" or "ignore this motor". A good example is the "Pose Motor" scene in the web demo. If you play with the slider, it's controlling the weight.

    It also works without animations. You can see that in the "Finger Pose Motor".
     
  36. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Hey Twobob,

    Great point. In my last performance test, the foot solve was taking 0.05 milliseconds. I felt this was a pretty good result. I would say that for any IK solution you want to be selective about how and what you use.

    If your character is flying... do you need foot placement? If you have 100 goblins running around...do they all need foot placement? Making games is an exercise in faking reality and sometimes we have to choose where we place the resources. ;)
     
    twobob likes this.
  37. dibdab

    dibdab

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    what I was thinking some kinda simple setup for using animation sampling (bone positions and rotations of a given frame of a given animation) to move the bone(s) to with the BoneController.
    here's a code to sample the first frame of animation (first frame might suffice for most of the cases):
    http://answers.unity3d.com/questions/46869/animationsample-usage.html
    I understand things are going to change somewhat in this regard in Unity5, and these bone motors I guess would be ideal to manage such movements based directly on animation frame (and not just adding to an animation, if I got this right).
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2015
  38. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Ah, that's a great idea... sampling an animation to create a pose.

    I did think about creating poses as separate "objects" so we could interpolate between them, but then I felt like I was just re-creating an animation system. But, this makes total sense. I need to think about it more, but I like it.
     
  39. Tryz

    Tryz

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    I've updated the draft User's Guide.

    At this point, it contains all the content for release. It's long, but feel free to look at the table of contents and pictures. Those will give you a good idea of what the Bone Controller does.

    This was a good exercise. After going through it and reading some great ideas on this thread, I will be making some changes. The features are the same, but some steps can be simplified.
     
  40. Zaddo67

    Zaddo67

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    "faking reality" is spot on :)

    So, can Bone controller just be enabled/disabled. i.e. enable/disable bone controller based on NPC being visible on screen.
     
  41. Tryz

    Tryz

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    @Zaddo67 Yeah, the whole things could be enabled/disabled or individual motors can be enabled/disabled as needed.

    I don't have anything in there that is doing the visibility check, but if you did have that logic the enabling/disabling would be trivial.
     
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  42. Tryz

    Tryz

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    @ZJP There was a question about supporting foot IK from different rotations...


    (Obviously your character controller will have to support rotating the character as well.)

    ;)
     
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  43. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    Haha, that looks great. Don't know if you heard of a game called "Grow Home" by Reflections (Ubisoft). The character controller is pretty crazy with procedural animations, but it has the best wall climbing system ever. Looks like IK with the character reaching for the closest direction on the rock face depending on which way the joystick is pressed, so reaches higher if the joystick is pressed up and lower (for climbing down) if the joystick is pressed down and must be shooting out rays to place the effectors. There are little circle decals on the rock where the hands will reach, red for left hand and blue for right hand. The triggers or bumpers on a standard xbox 360 controller control the character actually grabbing the rock at those spots or letting go if you release the buttons. It is also used for everything like moving rocks on the ground or pulling sheep around.

    Bone controller is looking very awesome.
     
  44. ZJP

    ZJP

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    @Tryz
    Woow. And what gravity script did you use for this? :eek:
     
  45. Tryz

    Tryz

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    Thanks all.

    @MIK3K , I haven't seen that, but I'll check it out. I love exploration games... climbing, sneaking, etc. That's what Hallow's Deep (my game) is about...that is when I get to it.

    @ZJP , There is no gravity for the Bone Controller (typically). Remember, things like character position, rotation, animations, and gravity-impact are the responsibility of the character controller. The Bone Controller says, "You want my foot to go there? There's no room. Here, I'll adjust the leg for you."

    In the picture, I just placed the people in the scene (no character controller) and then moved the boxes in and out to make sure the bones reacted as expected...regardless of the character's rotation.


    I should add that allowing character's to go invert or turn sideways is something I'm thinking about adding to the Motion Controller. It just means I need to abandon Unity's Character Controller and implement that functionality myself (or find a new base class).
     
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  46. twobob

    twobob

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    Tryz likes this.
  47. ZJP

    ZJP

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    Yes of course. What i called 'gravity script' is this one that allow you to parent the character to the cube/scene since you have to deactivate the 'official' gravity option of any collider.
    In other words, how do you keep the character upside down while the placemenent foot?

    The sample scene that I'll post soon include a minimum of scripts that will serve as a working basis.
    We will speak the same language :p
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  48. Tryz

    Tryz

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    hahaha... I'm missing something.

    I just put the characters and cubes in the scene and they "float" wherever I put them. No parenting or deactivating of gravity.

    Nothing has a rigid-body on it. The cubes do have colliders, but those don't apply a force without a rigid-body.

    While running (but using the scene editor), I moved the cubes up to the characters and the raycasting from the feet did the rest.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
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  49. MIK3K

    MIK3K

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    Yes! That is exactly how it works. You can move those projected decals around before actually moving the character's hands to grab. Very cool system. Seen some attempts in the past at rock climbing games that were overly complicated or just looked awkward to control. This IK stuff is magic and starting to notice it in games now that I'm looking for it.
     
    twobob likes this.
  50. twobob

    twobob

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2014
    Posts:
    1,749
    Yeah, it really would be a nice to have, tiny bit of path finding chucked in and you have a sexy add-on. nothing major just the 4 most likely moves or something. Reveals so much, showcases controller effortlessly from then on, in a AAA manner, for all subsequent creations; what's not to love? I would spare 1/3 a ms on that.