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UMA - Unity Multipurpose Avatar on the Asset Store!

Discussion in 'Assets and Asset Store' started by FernandoRibeiro, Dec 24, 2013.

  1. CaptainChristian

    CaptainChristian

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    I already got your power tools.

    I don't mind the compromise, because gameplay is more important than looks. I want to create something similar in scale to total war, that's why I am asking. This also means that not all of them need to be shown at once, but should be there somehow. The last tests have shown that even with your power tools, the framerate drops below 5 fps due to physics and animator. Since I don't need a sophisticated animation system for the large majority of those 10k characters, I'd like to remove the animator and switch over to a simple animation script.
     
  2. UnLogick

    UnLogick

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    Oh ok, but in that case I can give some advice.

    If you look at the UMAData in the Racial prefabs you will notice the Animated Bones array, that's the array that the Bone Baking preserves. The only bones that needs to be in that list is the required Mecanim Humanoid Bones. All the rest can be baked away!

    After that you should bake 10 (or some other number) of each kind of soldier to a prefab, that will allow you to use instancing to reduce memory usage (reuse meshes and textures)

    Also remove the physics simulation and set the models y based on the height field instead. That should make your framerate quite a bit higher.

    Good luck and keep us updated!
     
  3. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Also consider using a very simplified mesh for the avatars. Even the one I´m working for LOD won´t be enough.
    One important information is how many of those 10k would actually be visible at most cases?
    Cheers
     
  4. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Also, consider this:
    http://forum.unity3d.com/threads/143087-Skinned-mesh-instancing-What-s-that
     
  5. krillmcrawl0

    krillmcrawl0

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    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
  6. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    At some point, I wan´t to integrate UMA on my combat system :)
     
  7. MWMusker

    MWMusker

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    This looks really interesting, I have a few questions before I dive in to this though:

    Custom content:
    One of the primary qualms I had with the unreal engine's character framework was the difficulty of getting my own authored base meshes, rigs, animations, etc. working cleanly within the system. lets assume I wanted to replace the entire asset base just to leverage the customization, crowd generation, and randomization stuff. How much am I going to want to punch myself in the face?

    Non-Humanoids:
    Similarly, if I wanted to replace rigs and animations to do, say, gangs of quadrupeds like horses or something, how friendly is UMA's current incarnation?

    If these are my goals, is UMA going to save me time, or is its primary focus on using the default rigs/characters and extending them with props?
     
  8. LaneFox

    LaneFox

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    The idea is to use the base mesh provided to make unique character shapes, then add custom textures and meshes on top of the character (or just generate random ones). The base mesh is already rigged and skinned to give you good results when transforming it so if you wanted a new base mesh then you'd go through a lot of trouble to reskin it and polish that out to be on par with the current base mesh. You'd also go through a lot of effort to maintain that with any new content offered with UMA like new clothes or armor sets etc on the asset store since they would be setup for the default basemesh. Not really a cut and paste type thing, and its not intended to be.

    Afaik if you were making a new Rig for say spiders or something then thats possible, though you would be reworking a lot of low level things to get what you want. Not really a cut and paste type thing, and its not intended to be.

    If you're making humans/bipeds UMA is intended to negate the need for new rigs and basemeshes so you can just build new slots, overlays and accessories to create characters which is significantly faster than building every unique character. For instance making a set of robot legs and throwing it on any avatar to replace the legs with no issues, regardless of that character's shape. Or, putting gloves or a hair style on any avatar without having to worry about customizing it to fit them and doing it from only one original mesh/texture.
     
  9. kmvassey

    kmvassey

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    I'm just about to take on this very task with a custom male model, a shirt, and pants, so I'll let you know how beat up my face gets. So far I think this system has been very useful, so I'm hoping this task will be manageable.

    :)
     
  10. kmvassey

    kmvassey

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    @LaneFox, this is a great video! I did want to mention somethings we've discovered here at work about the units though. So, for whatever reason, Max isn't converting the actual scale data in the FBX file when you import it. So, in the ASCII FBX file that comes with the content pack, you will find a global "Unit Scale Factor" of 1.0, and in Blender the mesh is 2 meters tall, just like in Unity. So, when you import that FBX into Max, and you set your units conversion to be centimeters, a scale factor of 1.0, and your Max units to be centimeters, the surface actually comes in at 2cm, instead of 200cm(2m). To see this, you can select the male mesh in Max, and then use the measure tool. You should get something like 1.9, and that's in centimeters. If you bring in a 2m tall mesh, with Max set to cm, you would expect that number to be around 200cm. You might see some posts from me earlier trying to figure all this out. It's also why that Global bone in Max is so huge. So, we have been scaling the content meshes by altering the ASCII FBX files with a text editor. And for creating assets like shirts, etc, it's not that big of a deal, but if you are trying to replace the base meshes with a custom character, but want to transfer the rig and skin weights, having your Max created character be 200cm tall and your rig and skin import at 2cm tall just won't work.

    :)
     
  11. LaneFox

    LaneFox

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    Thanks! =) Im glad it helps.

    Interesting, I knew there were some things amiss with the way max was handling the whole matter but never could really figure it out because I was always thinking between imperial and metric and hadn't considered a linear metric scale issue...

    Have you tried setting the 3ds max units to Meters and letting the import scale at 100?
     
  12. makeshiftwings

    makeshiftwings

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    Can you guys update the release notes in the next update? It's important for a project that has a bunch of other subprojects dependant on it. It seems like we're up to version 1.0.7.0 but the release notes in the asset store package and on github only go up to 1.0.1.0. Is there anywhere to see what has changed?
     
  13. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Right now, I would say the best place is at Git: https://github.com/huika/UMA/commits/master
     
  14. kmvassey

    kmvassey

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    Yes, I tried every possible combination of Max settings, including working in meters. Unfortunately, Max has clipping issues working in meters that make working in the persp viewport almost impossible. You have to jump through a lot of hoops to set the clipping and then constantly adjust it. We also tried saving things out of Blender differently, which had mixed results. So far, the easiest solution has been to alter the text in the FBX files from the content pack, save them out to a separate area, do any modeling or adjusting, and then export your new assets normally, setting them to cm. I was finally able to have the UMA avatars equal the scaling of the existing assets from the game that's in development inside Unity. But like I said, this has mainly been a problem while trying to switch out the base meshes for a custom character, but retain most of the skinning and rigging. I thought for a second about trying to parent the adjustment bones to a Biped inside Max to make things even easier, and I might end up doing that, but I'm not looking forward to it. :)

    Incidentally, this scaling issue also happens in Maya. I honestly think it's more a problem with the way Blender is writing out FBX data. Thank goodness it's ASCII though.

    :)
     
  15. LaneFox

    LaneFox

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    Thanks for sharing the info. The thought of it being a blender export issue had crossed my mind but I don't know enough about blender to really test it. That's very cumbersome if the best solution is manually editing the file.
     
  16. MWMusker

    MWMusker

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    No, I get that, the problem is that the existing rig, default model, etc. is something I'd want to immediately replace. I'm not at all concerned with third part asset compatibility (I don't use outside art assets for multiple reasons) The primary draw for such a system for me is the codebase that drives the whole thing, I.E. Having a base rig, and using said rig with defined parts. I'm not interested in using the art, or third party art.

    If it's just intended as a shortcut/fill in for people's asset pools then that's a great purpose, but it's not exactly how I'd be looking to use it.

    It's value in cases where you actually have a character artist is how well it's going to handle importing rigs, wiring parameters to blend shapes, and defining regions for how parts are aligned/arrayed on your new rig. If its a system of plug ins, and I can feed it a base rig and define these properties then it's immediately useful. If there's a sort of "hard coded" base rig then it's not going to be great for anyone who doesn't want to be constrained to the semi-realistic proportions of that base rig without some pretty severe workarounds.

    Is it even useful in this case, or should I just keep writing my own system?
     
  17. Rirath

    Rirath

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    First and foremost guys, let me say "Thank you!" for this awesome tool. I know I'm bound to get use from it, and I this is a big feather in Unity's cap. And thank you FargleBargle for your comments.

    Secondly, as someone who primarily works in 2D but with an interest in 3D, there's a few things I'm still wrapping my head around. I've read through the thread but still have a few questions in my mind. Anyone who'd like to chime in would be most welcomed.

    1) I'm hesitant to buy add-ons to a just released add-on (UMA) like UMA Helper Pack and UMA Power Tools. The prices on each are certainly fair, and I'd like to get in on that $10 launch special for Power Tools - but things like showing in the editor and making a prefab seem, to me as an outsider, like something that might easily come to the core app. I saw UnLogick's vision post, but I guess I'm still not sure where the line of separation in functionality is being drawn.

    2) Does FernandoRibeiro / a core UMA team get anything from sale of assets that rely on UMA? Somehow I doubt it, but that'd be nice.

    3) This may seem obvious, but roughly speaking, how does this compare to a workflow using something like MakeHuman->Blender->Unity? I'm assuming the major strengths of UMA over MakeHuman is the ability to edit at runtime, making things like in-game character creation far easier, as well as populating a vast amount of NPCs relatively painlessly. Further benefits seem to be ability to "equip" these characters easier, and perhaps better atlasing? Perhaps the biggest benefit is mecanim setup? Anything I've missed or misunderstood?

    And as a comment, FargleBargle does have a point on the documentation and non-obviousness. I mean, it's free - I'm not complaining. But it has so much potential it's a shame to see it a bit rough around the edges. It all looks plug-and-play at first glance, but it may not be quite yet. Your tutorials are excellent FernandoRibeiro, I especially enjoyed the ones about making clothing, but after a year of development and a beta - holding off for another month or so to really nail down the docs and get through the holidays might have made for a smoother launch.

    Either way, thanks again!

    Edit: John Mabbott's review in the asset store was very enlightening for #3.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014
  18. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Hi there guys! New video:


    I´ll try answering as soon I´m back! Cheers
     
  19. LaneFox

    LaneFox

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    Yes, its noted that the docs are lacking, but understandably too though.

    Really once you dig in and see how it works it's not that complicated on the front end (deeper, yes, for artists mostly though), there are some definitely some things you need to become acquainted with and understand about how the system works but after that its kind of gravy. If something is unclear on the pipeline of how you add a few custom assets or how you put them on your model and store it for later use then say so and I'll explain it in a tutorial video. I made one for getting custom assets into UMA with Kirby's pack but I know it may not be so familiar for everyone and I probably left some questions unanswered.

    I have a script free workflow to put characters ingame right now just using UMA, Kirby's pack and baking prefabs with Joen's Power Tools. If you want to keep a link to UMA and not bake then you can just as easily serialize an Avatar, spawn it realtime and change it realtime.

    One other thing is that UMA has a definitely line drawn of where it wants to provide integration. Every game is different and trying to make a tool that will seamlessly throw assets into any game is a neverending journey. It's quite capable as is, you can take the demo scenes and integrate based on that or dig in and do your own integration. You'll start seeing more unique integrations soon, as UMA is really pretty great and being free it has potential to really extend many existing tools and kits.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2014
  20. makeshiftwings

    makeshiftwings

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    When I try to compile in Visual Studio, I get an error that the symbol "TextureCompressionQuality" in OverlayLibraryEditor.cs is missing. I found a similar post here:

    http://forum.unity3d.com/threads/22...ot-UnityEngine-TextureCompressionQuality-quot

    and it seems to be the same issue with me. The UnityEngine.dll in Unity/Editor/Data/Managed does include the enum, but the Windows Standalone and Development versions from the Library folder do not. I've temporarily worked around it by doing what that thread said and overwriting my Library folder's UnityEngine.dll with the one from the Unity installation folder but this doesn't stick as Unity seems to like to replace it again occasionally. Is there a way to fix it? Any idea why Unity chose to hide that enum from the release dll's?
     
  21. Aceshigh

    Aceshigh

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    How does licenses work for non commercial and commercial indie games?
     
  22. UnLogick

    UnLogick

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    You can freely use UMA in commercial games.
     
  23. gameseizer_00

    gameseizer_00

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    i thought today was january 16!
     
  24. CaptainChristian

    CaptainChristian

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    I haven't touched most of the graphic topics yet, so I am not sure what to do. I found this script for baking meshes posted by KarelA:
    Code (csharp):
    1.    
    2. public SkinnedMeshRenderer skinnedRef;
    3.     public Mesh meshRef;
    4.      
    5.     void Start()
    6.     {
    7.         skinnedRef = gameObject.GetComponent<SkinnedMeshRenderer>();
    8.     }
    9.      
    10.      
    11.     void Update()
    12.     {
    13.        skinnedRef.BakeMesh(meshRef);
    14.     }
    I guess the procedure for meshes and textures works like this, instantiate a prototype prefab and use its mesh for all other instantiated prefabs of the same type. Do I have to call BakeMesh each frame or is it enough to do it once?

    I found another script to bake animations:
    Can this be used somehow too or do I need something completely different for the bones? Also, which bones are required by Mecanim? Sorry to bother you with these questions.
     
  25. FargleBargle

    FargleBargle

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    Since some of my previous comments are being quoted here, I thought I'd weigh in on this. Since making those comments, the developers have been very good at answering a lot of the questions I had, and people like Lane have stepped up to provide good information as well. Forums like this one, and the ones for Power Tools and Kirby's Helper Pack, have been immensely useful as a means of filling some of the gaps in UMA's documentation. The original developers, and a few of the other end users, have been very helpful in answering questions about all aspects of UMA. If you don't see the answer you're looking for here, feel free to ask. They don't bite.
     
  26. Partel-Lang

    Partel-Lang

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    Sorry to borrow this thread for a moment, but if anyone here is already using UMA with Final IK or planning to, here's a video tutorial to get you started:


    Cheers,
    Pärtel
     
  27. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Hi there!
    I never had to use SkinnedMeshRenderer.BakeMesh() So I won´t be of much help. As far I understand, this is useful in case you want a huge number of identical avatars performing the exact same animation sample. If you can mix different groups, it can provide a good variation and great performance benefits.
     
  28. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    And you´ve been helping a lot too @FargleBargle, thanks a lot for that : ))
     
  29. Mikie

    Mikie

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    Just looked at the latest "save and load" movie. I don't see the save and load buttons. The save and load is in the UMA menu.
     
  30. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    You need the extra files that I´ve sent to AssetStore. As soon they are available, I´ll share the link on the video itself. :)
     
  31. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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  32. kmvassey

    kmvassey

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    Hey gang,

    Just a heads up that when I try to start a fresh UMA project from the Asset Store with the latest release, my virus protection software won't let it install. It's saying that the UMAEditor.dll has an infection called Gen:Variant.Kazy.161344.

    Has anyone else seen this??

    Hopefully it will get fixed.

    Thanks!
     
  33. UnLogick

    UnLogick

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    You're actually not the first to report this but since it's a false positive there isn't much we can do about it. So far I've heard two relatively unknown AV software complains, but none of the tools I've heard about reports any problems.

    I recommend getting the raw source files from https://github.com/huika/UMA and build the DLLs yourself.
     
  34. Mikie

    Mikie

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    Hi All,

    Just loaded the Tutorial files. Great stuff. I have not seen the virus problem. Did you say someone is working on monsters, cartoon, packages. How about visimes. Your rig does allow for the mouth to be animated?
     
  35. makeshiftwings

    makeshiftwings

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    Just wondering... Am I the only one having this problem?
     
  36. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    =D
     
  37. UnLogick

    UnLogick

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    I believe so, since that thread is new it might be a 4.3.3 problem, I'm too lazy to upgrade since 4.3.1 works nicely for me.

    Also in the UMA steering group we decided to stick with 4.3.1 as long as possible for uploading the UMA Package.
     
  38. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    I used MonoDevelop all the times I´ve worked on the DLL, don´t have any experience with Visual Studio :( As far I remember, Joen is using VS when he work at the DLL, but never mentioned any problem. It´s hard to know how many have a similar problem, as most developers are not using Git full source code.
     
  39. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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  40. makeshiftwings

    makeshiftwings

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    You might be right, I did update to 4.3.3. If you use a reflector like dotPeek you can look at the DLL's yourself, and the ones in the windows dev build folders for Unity 4.3.3 don't include TextureCompressionQuality. Only the version in the Unity installation's editor folder has it.
     
  41. greggtwep16

    greggtwep16

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    Hi Fernando,

    First off, thanks for this project it looks really neat. Following up on this topic of facial animation or animation in general I decided to retarget some existing animations of mine but the differences in the rig didn't produce a great result. I then took the base UMA model in tpose and played around with it in iClone and it looks like a very nice quality rig. I do have a couple of questions/comments though.

    1. If going forward I make most of my animations on the UMA rig and for whatever reason need to retarget to a different model of similar rig there was a few discrepancies on the face autoconfiguration (99% of the rig auto configured correctly but in the face the jaw and the eyes did not). Jaw auto configured to lips inferior and the eyes auto configured to the eyes themselves not to the globes which led to very strange looking muscle slider motions before I corrected them. I did this test by simply exporting from unity and then turning around and reimporting the fbx. Not sure if this is something to do with naming or something else in mecanim just thought I would let you know since it was the first retargeting issues I saw in mecanim.

    2. Your video on the face shows more than what mecanim maps (for example the eyelids for blinking) so these obviously would not retarget in the current version of mecanim regardless and it would need to keep your additional bones structure in order to ever "transfer" over to anything else. From what I understand this works as long as the bone structure is identical including bone size and other factors. Given that UMA allows you to change various factors (head size, etc) with sliders would these animations survive this? For instance, if I created an animation with blinking or visemes which would utilize these additional bones from what the mecanim muscles understand and then create another avatar with a different morph in the face would these animations work correctly?

    I'm not that experienced with Mecanim so if anything I stated above is wrong let me know.

    Really enjoy learning UMA (still a lot to learn) and look forward to diving more in depth with it as time permits.

    Thanks for all your hard work.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014
  42. Foxxis

    Foxxis

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    I too would like to thank all of those involved for the hard work! I have only spent a few hours this far evaluating UMA but by the looks of it this will save us a huge amount of time. Really thankful for this!

    Regarding facial animation, I too would like some more information about the most suitable workflow for integrating this with UMA. The docs have an example pic and states something to the effect that UMA will handle facial animation in the same way as "normal" Mecanim rigs. However, it also appears UMA uses a bone-based facial animation technique whereas Mecanim seems to favor blend shapes?

    So, yes I am a bit confused. It should be noted that I am not that experienced with Mecanim yet, so if I am missing something obvious you will have to forgive my ignorance.

    Anyway, to recap I think an answer to these questions would really help me (and probably others):

    - For procedural facial animation, what is the best way to target (find and modify) the facial bones in the UMA rig ?

    - For keyframed animation, what is the best workflow? Echoing the question above: will a facial animated UMA rig (in Blender or C4D etc.) animate the facial bones properly when driven by Mecanim?

    - Will UMA work with Mixamo's FacePlus? I would guess not since it uses blend shapes to drive the animation (If I understood correctly). If so does anyone know if someone is working on a solution to bridge the two?

    Many thanks in advance for any insight into this area!
     
  43. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Hi there! Very good questions :)

    1- I´ve noticed not only the eyes and mandible are not identified automatically, but also fingers are set incorrectly, that´s why I keep a template of the correlation between UMA and mecanim bones. Assets\UMA\UMA_Project\MecanimTemplates
    This link explains how the automatic setup works http://blogs.unity3d.com/2013/02/07/automatic-setup-of-a-humanoid/

    2- I keep a pair of bones also for the facial bones, this way, all adjusts are applied to adjust bones, and you still have all animation bones intact. Facial animation for UMA follow the same rules and limitations of other mecanim avatars.

    Cheers!
     
  44. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Back when we were developing UMA, Blend shapes didn´t existed. It only became available when we were close to releasing UMA itself so there was no time to adapt the framework. Being it open source, I believe at some point other devs will be able to provide the integration.

    What do you mean by procedural facial animation, setting rotations directly on bones? To handle that, you have full access to all UMA bones, take a look on any DnaConverterBehavior to see how it works.

    For keyframed animation, I only managed testing the animations exporting from blender, the steps and workflow are the same for Mecanim avatars.

    Will UMA work with Mixamo's FacePlus -> Can´t confirm that, We´ve been in contact with them, but don´t have any news.

    Cheers :)
     
  45. JMab

    JMab

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    Thanks Rirath! I actually started with a MakeHuman->Blender->Unity workflow for my game, and while it worked OK, I switched to UMA as soon as it came out as open beta. The initial reason was the UMA opened up the possibility of character customization using sliders, which gamers have come to expect now. After switching to UMA, more benefits became apparently, chiefly - a) performance: the mesh combing, bone baking and dual texture atlas makes the character as efficient as possible whilst retaining visual quality, b) the mesh topology was well thought out, which allowed for easier creation of clothes that looked realistic, even for a poor modeler like myself, and c) this should become the "standard" for Unity 3D characters, which brings the benefits of a lot of assets, advice, shared experience, etc.

    Plus, Fernando and Joen are nice guys, who are doing a lot for the Unity community, it's good to be involved in a small way. There is a real buzz about this project.
     
  46. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

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    Hi there! Sorry not answering you, I think I missed your post, just found it after above answer!
    1) The helper tools available not only will save your time, but also improve UMA overall solution. You should try UMA and decide for yourself if they are necessary on your project.

    2)We don´t receive anything from those sales, only for content we may sell as publishers.

    3) Above =)
     
  47. Pecek

    Pecek

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    I am having a strange issue when I try to use my models, anyone have any idea what did I wrong? The models working correctly after import to unity, but when the material builder creates a slot from the provided skinned mesh it looks like the lights are "inverted".
    $uma_strange.jpg

    I tried to solve this by recreate the slot, reimport the model, restart unity, switched to other shaders, none of them helped.

    Edit:here you can better see the problem, both mesh are completely the same, except the one on the left was generated by the material builder.

    $uma_strange2.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014
  48. serioussam

    serioussam

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    What's the best way to add ragdolls to generated characters?
     
  49. goat

    goat

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Posts:
    5,177
    At a glace the mesh seems inverted as if the normal on the mesh are backwards...
     
  50. FernandoRibeiro

    FernandoRibeiro

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2009
    Posts:
    1,362
    Can you post the normal map texture you´re using for this one? I believe you might have missed using MaterialBuilder on overlay.
     
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