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Establishing modular pipeline from Blender

Discussion in 'Animation' started by Sendatsu_Yoshimitsu, Nov 3, 2019.

  1. Sendatsu_Yoshimitsu

    Sendatsu_Yoshimitsu

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Posts:
    673
    I'm working on a project where multiple characters share the same animation rigging- their mesh and the transform of individual bones changes from model to model, but the rigging's bone hierarchy and general shape remain identical between all the models. Ideally I would like to maintain one file in Blender for each animation, import each animation clip as a standalone thing, then configure them in a single state machine that all the characters share.

    What's tripping me up is that apparently unity wants each animation to come with a complete rig and mesh, so importing a standalone animation from Blender doesn't seem feasible.

    So what's the recommended pipeline? Should I have one master character whose action stack contains every single animation, then set up each individual model to remap those animations? Should I import each animation with a standalone generic mannequin guy or something, and just have a dedicated folder filled with identical models who each happen to contain one animation? There must be a best practice here, but I'm really struggling to see it.
     
  2. arnedirlelwy

    arnedirlelwy

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2019
    Posts:
    2
    I don't 100% know the answer but I have messed with this a bunch.
    I think the best pipeline is to have one main character (so import into Unity and under Rig set Avatar Definition to Create from this model). Then all your other characters with the same rig are imported and have their Avatar Definition set to Copy from Avatar (and set to the main avatar). I would do individual animation files (like you said), and when you import them set their rig to copy from Avatar. And then all Clips under animation tab should be shareable among all your characters and thus one Animator could be shared with all the characters.
    I haven't tested this with a Generic Rig only on Huminoid rigs btw.
    Also, I am pretty positive animation files don't need to be skinned, only have the rig. However, it helps a lot to have them skinned when making the animations in Blender, as well as when importing them to see them in action during import.

    Hope this helps!
     
  3. Sendatsu_Yoshimitsu

    Sendatsu_Yoshimitsu

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Posts:
    673
    That helps a lot, and it's really easy to set up under my current setup- thank you for the advice! :)
     
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