TTLG|Thief|Bioshock|System Shock|Deus Ex|Mobile
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 29

Thread: Dark Animation Tools - version 2.00 (updated)

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland

    Dark Animation Tools - version 2.00 (updated)

    Hi All,

    I have released an updated version of my Dark Animation Tools for 3dsmax - v2.0.
    https://www.mediafire.com/file/2fqok...v2.00.zip/file

    I have been working on the updates for a while from time to time. Big thanks to Phantom for motivating me to finally get this out and for beta-testing.

    A list of changes for v2.0:
    • added support for all creature types from all released DarkEngine games – Thief 1/Gold, Thief 2 and System Shock 2. This includes player arms, spiders, Constantine, Overlord and others
    • Ability to browse motions and preview them interactively, before applying to AI
    • Flexible animation import – work with multiple characters at the same time and also import motions intended for a different creature type
    • revamped Motion Schema Editor – a GUI layer for the Shadowspawn’s Motion Editor tools
    • allows building motion database from 3dsmax, without editing text files and typing the commands manually
    • Additional animation controls, such as bone twisting controls or basic Torso controls
    • removed bugs and inconsistencies with motion import, export occuring in certain cases.


    I have not recorded any tutorial videos as such, but the following video may serve as a quick overview. This demonstrates loading two walking motions and combining them into a sequence:


    I understand there isn't many 3dsmax users in this forums, but if there is a higher interest, I may record some more tutorial videos. For now, the tools come with detailed instructions in PDF.

    Happy animating!


    Original message below (for version 1.0 release)
    -------

    Hi All,
    The tools for importing and animating characters in 3dsmax are now available for download:

    http://www.mediafire.com/download/8c...ools_v1.00.zip

    The first release lets you:
    - import AI - mesh and skeleton
    - import motions
    - animate AI using FK/IK blend rig
    - export motions to native format (.mi and .mc file)

    Currently, only biped characters are fully supported. This will change in the next version.

    The downloaded file contains detailed documentation in PDF format.

    I have also recorded some video tutorials available through a playlist on youtube:
    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...Kx0HKtO1h7o0XT

    Note: they come from the beta stage of the toolset, so certain elements of UI may look a bit different, but overall it's the same thing.

    You need some version of 3dsmax 2012 or higher for the scripts to work. (3dsmax 2010 and 2011 should work as well, but were not extensively tested).

    If you have any questions, let me know or just post below.

    Thanks and happy animating!

    Last edited by PinkDot; 30th Dec 2020 at 14:23. Reason: Released v2.0

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2013
    Congratulations on the release!

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    Thanks nemyax for beta-testing!

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Toronto, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by PinkDot View Post
    Thanks nemyax for beta-testing!
    This is the greatest achievement since the wheel!


    Can I PLEASE BEG a favour?

    Can you please make a very short, very simple video demonstrating 1 example of doing every step from beginning to end using max, (install, import, using max's animation system to add skeleton, animate, export) or whatever the barebones sequence is to use this? I definitely plan to take full advantage of this but am notoriously bad at learning new abstract concepts by myself or from written instructions. Especially with respect to this, "- animate AI using FK/IK blend rig", I haven't got a clue and would really benefit from a demonstration!

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Toronto, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by RocketMan View Post
    This is the greatest achievement since the wheel!


    Can I PLEASE BEG a favour?

    Can you please make a very short, very simple video demonstrating 1 example of doing every step from beginning to end using max, (install, import, using max's animation system to add skeleton, animate, export) or whatever the barebones sequence is to use this? I definitely plan to take full advantage of this but am notoriously bad at learning new abstract concepts by myself or from written instructions. Especially with respect to this, "- animate AI using FK/IK blend rig", I haven't got a clue and would really benefit from a demonstration!
    ...and I just realized how dumb I must have just sounded because you put up tutorials and I totally power-read the post and missed it because it was THAT exciting. I feel stupid.

  6. #6
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Bohn Museum
    Thanks so much for this and all your work, PinkDot! I may finally take the plunge with it and try to learn how to do motions, which I've always shied away from.

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    Quote Originally Posted by RocketMan
    and I just realized how dumb I must have just sounded because you put up tutorials and I totally power-read the post and missed it because it was THAT exciting. I feel stupid.
    Ha, ha - no worries.
    The videos are rather slow paced, so should be hopefully easy to follow.

    Especially with respect to this, "- animate AI using FK/IK blend rig", I haven't got a clue
    FK - Forward Kinematics. IK - Inverse Kinematics. These are basic concepts in animation and rigging. Forward Kinematics means that parent moves a child - shoulder moves elbow, elbow moves wrist etc... It's a basic and intuitive concept.
    IK on the other hand means that it's the child that drives the parent. If your leg is in IK mode and you move a feet, it will rotate calf and tigh. If you move pelvis, the foot will stay where it is (eg. on the ground) and again the calf and tigh will be repositioned. So that can prevent all those floating legs, which we can observe in the THief 2 existing animations (eg. in idle animations).
    Hope that clarifies things a bit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros
    Thanks so much for this and all your work, PinkDot! I may finally take the plunge with it and try to learn how to do motions, which I've always shied away from.
    Cheers. Yeah, existing tools were very rough, so to speak. Now the only limitations are the dark engine limitations.

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2013
    Quote Originally Posted by RocketMan View Post
    "- animate AI using FK/IK blend rig", I haven't got a clue and would really benefit from a demonstration!
    Use IK for a jab; use FK for a haymaker. You get the idea =)

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    Thanks so much for this and all your work, PinkDot! I may finally take the plunge with it and try to learn how to do motions, which I've always shied away from.
    Me too. But I don't speak 3ds Max. We'll see how far I can get.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: NMONʞN∩
    This is awesome! Sure beats the hell out of trying to get motions out of a white stick figure. Looks like I need to get out of my comfort zone of using anim8or for models, and start learning to use 3ds Max.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: swirling in the night wind
    Wow - this looks awesome! Something totally new to confound the pants off me - can't wait to dive in!

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by PinkDot View Post
    The videos are rather slow paced, so should be hopefully easy to follow.
    Indeed the videos are very easy to follow from what I saw and you don't need to be a 3ds max pro to go through the process. Just follow the guide and make a small easy animation and try it out. I hope from now on every FM will have its custom animations too Or even better: an 3D HD model pack with complete animation overhaul

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Sep 1999
    Location: Texas, hhhwweeee hawww
    Quote Originally Posted by SeriousToni View Post
    ... complete animation overhaul
    My dream is to have the original motions redone, if only they look slightly different, to regain some unexpected feelings and immersion. It would be a quick replace if I can get some motion capture going. Just a dream for now.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    My dream is to have the original motions redone, if only they look slightly different, to regain some unexpected feelings and immersion. It would be a quick replace if I can get some motion capture going. Just a dream for now.
    Motion capture systems get simpler, cheaper and more accesible, so you never know...
    I think I might add on my to-do list some BVH import functionality... And maybe some other formats too - there's a lot of ready animations out-there on the internet and it would definitely be easier option in lot of cases to be able to convert them, rather than to animate from scratch.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Location: Germany
    Did someone already accomplish to import and export some ready-made animations yet? Would be interesting to see a guard having an alternate walk style or something.

  16. #16

  17. #17
    Master Builder 2018
    Registered: Jul 2008
    Thank you, Brethren!

  18. #18
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    Hi All,

    I have released an updated version of my Dark Animation Tools for 3dsmax - v2.0.
    https://www.mediafire.com/file/2fqok...v2.00.zip/file

    I have been working on the updates for a while from time to time. Big thanks to Phantom for motivating me to finally get this out and for beta-testing.

    A list of changes for v2.0:
    • added support for all creature types from all released DarkEngine games – Thief 1/Gold, Thief 2 and System Shock 2. This includes player arms, spiders, Constantine, Overlord and others
    • Ability to browse motions and preview them interactively, before applying to AI
    • Flexible animation import – work with multiple characters at the same time and also import motions intended for a different creature type
    • revamped Motion Schema Editor – a GUI layer for the Shadowspawn’s Motion Editor tools
    • allows building motion database from 3dsmax, without editing text files and typing the commands manually
    • Additional animation controls, such as bone twisting controls or basic Torso controls
    • removed bugs and inconsistencies with motion import, export occuring in certain cases.


    I have not recorded any tutorial videos as such, but the following video may serve as a quick overview. This demonstrates loading two walking motions and combining them into a sequence:


    I understand there isn't many 3dsmax users in this forums, but if there is a higher interest, I may record some more tutorial videos. For now, the tools come with detailed instructions in PDF.

    Happy animating!

    (I also updated the first post in this thread)

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Sep 1999
    Location: Texas, hhhwweeee hawww
    Amazing! Thank you! "Big thanks to Phantom" indeed, I better get my butt back to work or he's gunna be pissed at me for using his amazing AI on my project, if I don't release it :P

  20. #20
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    So this supports actually modifying an existing motion?

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    Yes, you can either modify existing motions or make new ones from scratch.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Sunny Finland
    This seems to work pretty well. I find euler filter so necessary that it probably should be a checkbox in the import dialog. Selecting a recent motion (in the import dialog) doesn't do anything. Is there any way to plant hands or feet at current position?

    Modifying an existing motion is definitely not easy, due to every frame on every joint being a keyframe in the motion files. But that's not this tool's fault.

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    Joint interpolation for a specified number of frames of motion between start and end positions would help though.

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    Thanks for the feedback.

    I find euler filter so necessary that it probably should be a checkbox in the import dialog.
    I totally agree. Sadly, the Euler filter tool is not exposed to a scripting API. Maybe one day I'll implement it myself, if I find a bit more info on what the calculations are.

    Selecting a recent motion (in the import dialog) doesn't do anything.
    It loads the recent motion into memory. So you can either press Apply to import the motion or press the '>' ("cheap" version of PLAY ) button and it should play interactively on the current character.

    Is there any way to plant hands or feet at current position?
    Yep, that's what IK mode is ON. IK mode on feet is ON by default, when you import the character, OFF for hands. But when you import a motion, the IK for feet is getting turned OFF, as motion gets loaded onto FK controls only.

    IK controls are the red ones, so just select them and move or animate the slider in the Modify Panel from FK to IK mode.

    Joint interpolation for a specified number of frames of motion between start and end positions would help though.
    That is the basic 3dsmax functionality - animation values get interpolated between key frames. You can set the ease in and out for every key etc.. to control the interpolation shape (linear/slowing down/speeding up etc...)

    However if you import an animation what you're getting is a baked motion - with a key in every frame. If you intend to modify existing motion you can either create Animation Layer on the FK controls and add relative motion on top.

    Or you can clean up the keys - just leave the extremes and then work from there, with just a few keys. This can be tedious initially, but yeah - that's similar to working with motion capture data. It always needs a clean up process.

    There are tools/scripts, that can optimize/clean up curves, removing unnecessary keys, but as every automated process, it's subject to work better in certain scenarios and worse in others.

  25. #25
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Sunny Finland
    I think more often than not you need both. You need to reduce existing keys to edit or remove some motion and you need to layer something on top. And the latter is done by adding controllers to individual joints. And then you always have to remember to activate the controller you want to work with. This is nothing new, but it's a lot of work.

    Quote Originally Posted by jermi View Post
    Is there any way to plant hands or feet at current position?
    The "IK --> FK" button is what I was looking for here. These buttons could perhaps be named more clearly. I had to actually RTFM.

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkDot View Post
    It loads the recent motion into memory. So you can either press Apply to import the motion
    The "Apply" button remains disabled, is what I mean by "doesn't do anything".

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •