PDA

View Full Version : Alternative to animeeple?



Simon-S
05-11-2012, 08:05 AM
Hi All,

I've just been looking into using mocap with lightwave and came across animeeple which has now been discontinued. A shame as motion-builder is so expensive and not an option for me.

Is there a free alternative to animeeple/motion builder? Has anyone tried Jimmy Rig?

If not, does anyone have a copy of the free animeeple that they'd be willing to share?

I'm also looking into facial mocap and wondered how one would go about applying that data to a characters face in LW?

Thanks

RebelHill
05-11-2012, 08:48 AM
There's very little atm I afraid. The closest thing there is is IKinemas web animate. I think taht's still free for the moment, but at some point is gonna charge for exporting finished anims. But for now, its your best bet if free is what you need.

As for facial mocap, you can pretty much forget it... at least in LW. you could build some half baked setups that sorta work, but its gonna be a lot of effort for very little reward in return.

Simon-S
05-11-2012, 08:53 AM
I'm actually willing to spend on a mocap pipeline, I just cant roll into the thousands which is what I'd need to buy motionbuilder. Are there other retargeting apps out there that dont break the bank?

You say to forget about facial mocap in lightwave...what would be the alternative? Could Blender do it and then export the .mot files to reapply in LW?

Thanks

RebelHill
05-11-2012, 09:12 AM
Mocap pipelines WILL be thousands... often several of thousands, no getting away from that. And no, there's pretty much no inbetween. There's the little stuff, and then motionbuilder.

There are inbetweens... like jimmy Rig, which is cool and all, but doesnt give you mocap "exchange" yet, so you're basically stuck there with JRs skinning and so on. Ofc that'll probs change in future but right at the minute its only really good for basic or background stuff.

As for facial mocap... the ONLY alternative is a custom solution. The problem with facial mocap is that there's no really defined standard, and there's the big problem of RETARGETING... there is NO off the shelf solution to do that. You can ofc get basic captures using something like zigntrack or even syntheyes... but you need to be able to translate that info onto your characters... and the only option for that atm is a custom build.

To that end, softimage would be your best bet, as you make much more complex tools via ICE with much less know how than you'd need to be able to build the same in MEL, or LScript, or whatever.

So basically... unless uve got the skills needed to build your own setup/rigger/retargeter... forget it.

Philbert
05-12-2012, 08:10 PM
I haven't really gotten into it but it sounds like the best alternative currently is Ikinema WebAnimate. I'm not a big fan of uploading my models and such to a server but it is a cheap (free) option. Personally I'm still using an old version of Animeeple. I guess I'll have to move on eventually.

http://www.ikinema.com/webanimate/webanimate.php

Titus
05-12-2012, 08:16 PM
Mocap pipelines WILL be thousands... often several of thousands, no getting away from that. And no, there's pretty much no inbetween. There's the little stuff, and then motionbuilder.

There seems to be a business opportunity here... or watching animeeple going belly up maybe not.

Philbert
05-12-2012, 08:19 PM
I think Animeeple's downfall was being free unfortunately. I think many people would download it and just use the free mocap data that came with it. Another odd thing was that I couldn't find anything for sale in it's marketplace. Everything I saw said $0.00 for the price. If they sold Animeeple for a small price, say $40-50 I think they could have done alright with it.

Titus
05-12-2012, 08:48 PM
Wow! Animeeple was created by Okan Arikan, a guy very close to being a genius.

Titus
05-12-2012, 09:16 PM
Looking a little more about this stuff, it seems Animeeple was created with the help of a govt. grant (http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=1014407), the goal was to identify the feasibility of this business model. I've some ideas.

warmiak
05-13-2012, 12:18 AM
Looking a little more about this stuff, it seems Animeeple was created with the help of a govt. grant (http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=1014407), the goal was to identify the feasibility of this business model. I've some ideas.

I guess it wasn't free after all...

Ryste3d
05-13-2012, 12:39 AM
www.Mixamo.com

and iClone Mocap Animation - www.reallusion.com/iclone/

Made this "tutorial" with free mocap. This is basic Mocap animation in Lightwave, and certainly not up to standard with RebeIHill, but it works for high speed movement with motion blur :)

Sorry for my bad English in these video tutorials.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzECcyatJ_I&list=UUxg7gGVOL8PB50n8hx8-T3w&index=6&feature=plcp

Greenlaw
05-13-2012, 03:50 AM
Yeah, Ikinema Webanimate is pretty much it for free solutions right now.

Animeeple was pretty good, especially for being a free program. I wish they had made it a commercial program and invested the money to make it more robust. Oh, well.

There is clearly a lot of interest in a low cost alternative to Motion Builder. That said, Motion Builder is still the tops for this sort of thing. It's what my wife and I use on our little projects and it works great with Lightwave.

(FYI, if you have a student ID you can get an educational license pretty cheaply. Of course, this assumes you will be using it non-commerically.)

Jimmy|Rig Pro can import .bvh data, so it's a good way to mix and edit your data. JRP does it's own auto-rigging and allows you some control over editing joint placements within the program. I don't think you can import your own rig into JRP but after you export the JRP rig to .lws you will have a rig template to use in Lightwave. This may be useful if you want to add to or otherwise enhance the character and use Load Items From Scene - Merge Motion Envelopes Only to transfer the motions. BTW, they did announce a while back that they are adding FBX support--I think they already did this but check their forums to be sure. (I haven't used JR in a very long time so I'm not completely up-to-date on its current capabilities.)

As far as inexpensive mocap systems go, my wife and I use iPi Desktop Motion Capture (http://ipisoft.com/) which allows us to capture motions using up to six Playstation 3 Eye cameras or two Microsoft Kinects. (JRP is limited to using a single Kinect.) iPi DMC is a relatively inexpensive system and the output quality is pretty decent. We completed one short film using this system, and we're in the middle of making two more films. A key feature is that has its own built-in retargeting system. Mocap editing is pretty much limited to basic cleanup though, so you'll need to do more advanced stuff that in another program. (If you don't own MB, RH's Rhiggit! Pro will come in handy here.)

Version 2.0 of iPi DMC is about to come out. You can save some money if you buy 1.0 now and get a free upgrade to 2.0.

G.

Greenlaw
05-13-2012, 05:05 AM
I know I've said this before, (at least a few times in the past couple years,) but because it hasn't happened yet: it would be totally cool if Lightwave finally got a joints system that was more compatible with third-party applications for mocap transfer (i.e., with Motion Builder, iPi DMC, Maya, Ikinema, etc.)

To recap...

Lightwave offsets its weight map assignments to a given joint's child joint instead of to itself, which is the opposite of what every other 3D program does (it's even the opposite of how Lightwave Z-bones work.) This weight map offset means Lightwave users are required to create special non-Lightwave compatible 'export' versions of their rigs or otherwise modify the rigs in other applications to make the transfer of mocap data possible.

Another issue is that when transferring a joints based rig between apps, Lightwave drops the end joint from every chain and replaces it with a duplicate of the parent joint. This not only messes up the rig, it completely breaks Load From Scene - Merge Motion Envelopes Only. To work around this bug, users have been required to add a 'dummy' joint at the end of every chain to sacrifice in the exchange process. Another pothole in the road to efficiency.

With all the wonderful effort NewTek had put into their FBX support in the last two versions of Lightwave, it would be awesome if the rigging data could start off being friendly to industry standards to make FBX support even better.

But because these issues have persisted since version 9.6, one has to wonder if the problems with the current joints system are unfixable, and maybe a new solution needs to be looked at.

Here's one possibility: The previously mentioned IKinema licenses their IKinema Solver system to 3D developers, and this the rigging system Luxology recently adopted for Modo. I wonder if NewTek might consider getting IKinema Solver for Lightwave 12? This solution would give us not only an industry-friendly joints rigging system but a built-in retargeting solution too. Maybe it's just me but I would think this would be huge advancement for Lightwave and motion capture users.

Just putting it out there. I imagine NewTek must have something up their sleeves, and I hope we hear about it sooner than later. :)

G.

meshpig
05-13-2012, 06:46 AM
So from where did MotionBuilder arise and what happened to it's original authors?

Philbert
05-13-2012, 12:58 PM
Wasn't Motion Builder originally Kaydara Filmbox, which is also where FBX came from?

Edit: Yep, searching Wikipedia for Filmbox brings you to the motion builder page.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filmbox

I guess the Kayadara employees got absorbed into autodesk or laid off.

geo_n
05-13-2012, 01:26 PM
I'm actually willing to spend on a mocap pipeline, I just cant roll into the thousands which is what I'd need to buy motionbuilder. Are there other retargeting apps out there that dont break the bank?


Buying motionbuilder is not so critical unless you're working with multiple apps where you will share mocap based on a standard rig imported to multiple apps. We haven't needed motionbuilder at all but use 90% mocap in animation in another app.
Better to buy xsi, max, etc that has its own retargetting system if you're going to spend that much and you get more from the money spent. Mocap systems output natively to these appz anyway like ipisoft outputs bip files.
There's only jimmyrig, animeeple, Ikinema, mixamo but all produce below average results. Good for background stuff. There really is no option but to spend.

Greenlaw
05-13-2012, 01:28 PM
Motion Builder was originally called Filmbox and developed by a Canadian company called Kaydara. Autodesk acquired it and renamed it Motion Builder. If you've never used it, it's a curious 3D program in that it's almost entirely focused on animation and not much else--i.e. there are no real modeling tools and rendering is very limited. Even for rigging, MB kinda assumes you've done the basic groundwork in another package, so it really functions more as a support package to other 3D programs (like Lightwave.) But once you get your character and motion data inside MB, it's pretty amazing what you can do with it. Autodesk has mostly neglected the program for several years but MB is still a heavy hitter with little competition for what it does.

But this situation has been changing as more general purpose 3D programs are including built-in retargeting, animation layers, and other advanced motion editing capabilities.

Hopefully, Lightwave too is being prepared to enter the ranks. The improved FBX support was an important first step. Updating or replacing the current joints system for compatibility with industry-wide motion capture standards would be an excellent second step. (Pretty please, Newtek?) :)

G.

DigitalSorcery8
05-13-2012, 01:30 PM
Actually no. Kaydara renamed it MotionBuilder and sold it as MotionBuilder. They sold it to Alias and then AutoDesk bought it from Alias.

Greenlaw
05-13-2012, 01:38 PM
Okay. Thanks for the correction. :)

DigitalSorcery8
05-13-2012, 02:27 PM
I bought into MotionBuilder with Kaydara when they had a SUPER special offer to get a one (temp?) license edition for (I think it was) $100 - maybe $200. At this time there were two versions - a "hobbyist" version and a Pro version. That was version 4 and then it was cheap to upgrade to a permanent license with version 5. Kaydara was great; the support was great and the forums were great. I think they then sold it to Alias and we got v5.5 and then v6. Not too sure, but I recall v6 being quite buggy. I think then Alias sold it to AD, and then we got v7. AD decided to discontinue the hobbyist version and was planning on removing the option to be able to update your license if you had a machine crash. Many of us were pissed so I (and others) contacted the BBB and FTC - ultimately AD backed down and said "no, we didn't mean that you couldn't relocate MB to a new machine if your machine died.... you can contact this other company for a new lock ID number." You can pretty much bet that when AD gets a hold of something it is NOT a good thing - IMO of course. ;)

Aside form all that, JimmyRig Pro is supposed to be a pretty good replacement for MB - when it eventually gets completed that is. That's why the company developed JimmyRig since MB was serious overkill for what they needed. I think that when JR Pro finally ships, it will be the defacto replacement for MB - allot cheaper and easier to retarget mocap. Well... hopefully.

Edit. I just checked. It cost $100 for MotionBuilder 4 PE learning edition - a one year license. Then we were able to upgrade to MB 5 and a permanent license for only $100 more. $200 and we had a permanent license of MB. Then Kaydara updated to v5.5 and also v6. It wasn't till version 7 that Alias or AD took over. I don't think that Alias had it for a very long time.

Rayek
05-13-2012, 09:48 PM
You may also want to have a look at the new(er) motion capture tools that are now part of Blender. It offers:
- simple/advanced retargeting
- noise cleanup
- follow path
- samples to bezier curves
- animation stitching and blending of mocap files
- other useful tools.

You may be able to work with these tools to cleanupm edit, and stitch mocap files, and export to bvh/fbx/collada for use in Lightwave.

http://vimeo.com/28004438
http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/User:Benjycook/GSOC/Manual

alexs3d
05-14-2012, 01:06 AM
i saw a presentation of iclone http://www.reallusion.com/products.asp on the fmx in stuttgart, it is great piece of software for the money and i think its the cheapest combination to build a mocap pipeline with the microsoft kinect.

there is also the human IK integrated, like in motionbuilder, the lipsync is nice, speak into the microphon, record it and if you have setup the blendshapes or morpes right, the character lips are synced to the mp3 ...
i have to try it myself but it worked well in the presentation.
also the mocap with the kinect is working nice.

i spoke with the developer and it seems to be well developed with many update for the future like 2 kinect support and so on ....

it is worth a try :)

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 01:14 AM
Buying motionbuilder is not so critical unless you're working with multiple apps where you will share mocap based on a standard rig imported to multiple apps.
I might agree for many cases. In my situation, MotionBuilder has been the best solution in my recent short film projects mostly because of the characters' grotesque 'Charlie Brown' proportions. The stubby arms and legs and giant head can result in some funny retargeting results with normal human mocap applied, but in MB I find the mismatches are very easy to compensate for.

However, for normal human proportioned characters, even the built-in retargeting in iPi DMC should be adequate.

I should try some of our 'Brudders' data in J|R Pro just to see what happens. I'll see if I can make time for this later in the week. My guess is that the giant heads will throw it off but I think the program allows you correct its autorigger results for this. (It's been a long time since I last played with JRP so I'm not 100% sure about this.)

G.

geo_n
05-14-2012, 01:44 AM
Iclone looks really interesting especially for the price. Didn't know about that. Wonder how well it integrates into lw.
Motionbuilder really needs some competition. Its too expensive.

Greenlaw- characterstudio doesn't have problem retargetting with huge heads typical of anime characters :D

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 01:53 AM
You may also want to have a look at the new(er) motion capture tools that are now part of Blender...
Yeah, I'm actually looking into Blender now to use in a personal project for later this year. I'm going to need DirectX output and I'm not sure Lightwave will be up for the task. This is new territory for me though, so I'm admittedly more than a little clueless about this topic. :p

I did find D-Storm's DirectX exporter for Lightwave but it's pretty old and only works in x32. I haven't tested it so I'm not sure it works in Lightwave 11 yet, and in another post it sounds like the plug-in might not support mocap/animation, just model export. I'm a tiny bit surprised there's never been native support for this in Lightwave, and my guess is that it's probably not going to happen any time soon because all the focus is on Unity support right now.

Besides using Blender to convert the animation to DirectX (which was suggested to me elsewhere,) my main option for Lightwave seems to be to use Polytrans to convert Lightwave scenes to DirectX. Polytrans isn't too terribly expensive so it's a possibility. We use Polytrans at work so I want to test the conversion there first. But then again, Blender is free, so...

Anyway that project is pretty far up the road, so I'm trying not to think too hard about it yet. Right now I've got way too many other projects keeping me busy. :p

G.

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 01:54 AM
Thanks geo_n. I don't have Max at home though. We have it at work but even there I know very little about it.

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 02:01 AM
I looked at iClone several years ago when I started working on the first 'Brudders' short film projects. The main issue with iClone is that you're limited to using their character assets unless you're a developer using Max. My understanding is that you can replace textures on existing characters without using Max, but if you want to import and animate your own character meshes you need to do this through Max using their dev kit. There is apparently a beta kit for Maya but I'm not sure how actively it's being supported and developed. AFIK, no similar options exist for Lightwave users.

G.

jwiede
05-14-2012, 02:10 AM
Iclone looks really interesting especially for the price. Didn't know about that. Wonder how well it integrates into lw.
Motionbuilder really needs some competition. Its too expensive.
Just be sure you _really_ understand the price, the iClone pricing model is very much designed to eat your bank account in $99/$199-sized chunks. I'm not wholly convinced you'd be better off than with JRPro, price-wise.

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 02:38 AM
I bought into MotionBuilder with Kaydara when they had a SUPER special offer...
Wow, that's unbelievable. From what I can tell, Autodesk increased the price significantly for the post-Kaydara MotionBuilder but haven't invested much back into the software. I'm using 2010, and it seems to me that the major advances in later versions has been a new skin for the program.

FYI, we got a great deal by getting MB through an educational program but of course this license limits us to non-commercial projects. That's fine for now because all our projects have been free to watch, but when we decide to go commercial we'll have to bite the bullet and pay full price. We're prepared to do that when it happens, but I'm hoping before then a more affordable solution will become available or that Lightwave will get a decent native joints/retargeting system. (I can dream about it anyway.) :p

BTW, an iPi Soft dev mentioned that they want to add .lws support in version 2.0. However, they have a big list of publicly announced features coming throughout the year, so my guess is that direct Lightwave support probably won't happen before next year. (That's just a guess--I have absolutely no knowledge about their internal schedule.)

G.

meshpig
05-14-2012, 02:49 AM
I bought into MotionBuilder with Kaydara when they had a SUPER special offer to get a one (temp?) license edition for (I think it was) $100 - maybe $200. At this time there were two versions - a "hobbyist" version and a Pro version. That was version 4 and then it was cheap to upgrade to a permanent license with version 5. Kaydara was great; the support was great and the forums were great. I think they then sold it to Alias and we got v5.5 and then v6. Not too sure, but I recall v6 being quite buggy. I think then Alias sold it to AD, and then we got v7. AD decided to discontinue the hobbyist version and was planning on removing the option to be able to update your license if you had a machine crash. Many of us were pissed so I (and others) contacted the BBB and FTC - ultimately AD backed down and said "no, we didn't mean that you couldn't relocate MB to a new machine if your machine died.... you can contact this other company for a new lock ID number." You can pretty much bet that when AD gets a hold of something it is NOT a good thing - IMO of course. ;)

Aside form all that, JimmyRig Pro is supposed to be a pretty good replacement for MB - when it eventually gets completed that is. That's why the company developed JimmyRig since MB was serious overkill for what they needed. I think that when JR Pro finally ships, it will be the defacto replacement for MB - allot cheaper and easier to retarget mocap. Well... hopefully.

Edit. I just checked. It cost $100 for MotionBuilder 4 PE learning edition - a one year license. Then we were able to upgrade to MB 5 and a permanent license for only $100 more. $200 and we had a permanent license of MB. Then Kaydara updated to v5.5 and also v6. It wasn't till version 7 that Alias or AD took over. I don't think that Alias had it for a very long time.

Half yer luck:) MB is outrageously expensive though when you consider CS5 in it's entirety is about the same... though a lot of that is pretty floppy without constantly shelling out for minor upgrades.

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 02:54 AM
Ah, just found this helpful info about exporting DirectX from Lightwave:

http://forums.newtek.com/showpost.php?p=1124631&postcount=6

I still need to test this workflow myself but I think I'm good for my project. The process is a bit convoluted and involves going back to LW 8.5 (the plug-in apparently requires 8.5). That part doesn't thrill me so I hope a modern Lightwave 11 compatible solution come out someday. For now though, we have a workaround.

Here's the link to the full thread:

http://forums.newtek.com/showthread.php?p=1244584#post1244584

G.

Simon-S
05-14-2012, 02:56 AM
You may also want to have a look at the new(er) motion capture tools that are now part of Blender. It offers:
- simple/advanced retargeting
- noise cleanup
- follow path
- samples to bezier curves
- animation stitching and blending of mocap files
- other useful tools.

You may be able to work with these tools to cleanupm edit, and stitch mocap files, and export to bvh/fbx/collada for use in Lightwave.

http://vimeo.com/28004438
http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/User:Benjycook/GSOC/Manual

Right now Blender is seeming like a good way to go. It seems like a proper work horse and there doesn't appear to be much that it can't do. (aside from import fbx that is :p ) Does Blender handle facial retargeting?

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 09:47 AM
Sorry if this is bordering on OT but here are two more options for getting DirectX output from Lightwave scenes. I think this may be related because it involves moving mocap from Lightwave into a gaming environment using a third party program as an intermediary:

FragMotion (http://www.fragmosoft.com/)
This program imports .fbx or .dae and can output .x.

MilkShape
(http://chumbalum.swissquake.ch/index.html) This one can read .lws directly and output .x.

Both are pretty cheap and can do basic modeling, rigging and animation. According to some users I've been in contact with, they may use any of a variety of tools depending on which 3D animation package they're starting from and what they're trying to export. One user told me that that because I use Lightwave as my primary 3D program he recommends FragMotion. I'm not sure why yet--will ask, and also test both as soon as I have time.

Just to be clear, these programs do nothing for retargeting mocap data but they may extend what you can do with your mocap after you get it into Lightwave.

G.

Titus
05-14-2012, 10:32 AM
It's good to know. Back in the days I was involved with a team trying to export .x files for xbox games, it was impossible to export advanced features like bones.

DigitalSorcery8
05-14-2012, 01:48 PM
Half yer luck:) MB is outrageously expensive though when you consider CS5 in it's entirety is about the same... though a lot of that is pretty floppy without constantly shelling out for minor upgrades.

:agree: It is way too expensive. Then again, it does what it does VERY well.

I was lucky enough to get it when Kaydara sold it - when support was great and they catered to the hobbyist market separately from the pro one with a well-priced version. If AD had kept the hobbyist version, they would have a hell of allot more customers now and more buying into it everyday since mocap is becoming so prevalent and less expensive. Then again, in removing the hobbyist from the equation, they prompted other companies to create things like JimmyRig and Animeeple, etc. Hopefully JR will do what most of us need it to do. Still... at $300.... it's not cheap for the average hobbyist. But then again, neither is ipisoft mocap. :)

geo_n
05-17-2012, 10:19 PM
:agree: It is way too expensive. Then again, it does what it does VERY well.


Maybe soon AD will buy or integrate something like brekel, IPI into motionbuilder. So the price is ok.
The videos here are very interesting for mocap with motionbuilder and excellent tutorial by master Louis Marcoux.
http://area.autodesk.com/blogs/louis/3ds_max_and_motion_builder_workflow_and_a_bit_of_k inect

But maybe only to users with mixed pipeline its interesting. The max biped to motionbuilder looks extremely smooth workflow if ever there was a need to share rigs to different appz.
The last video with motionbuilder and brekel kinect. Not bad but needs lots of cleanup.

raymondtrace
12-04-2018, 10:46 AM
Animeeple was mentioned in another discussion thread active today so I started exploring something I missed years ago. If anyone is still looking for this little curiosity, it can be found at archive.org as version 0.4.18.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111213071108/http://www.animeeple.com/download/files/Animeeple.exe (21.9 MB)

As a fan of portable software, I can confirm it can run portably (install it, copy the program files to your portable, uninstall it).

It imports BVH/FBX/DAE and exports to DAE, which can load back into LW.

Philbert
12-04-2018, 12:22 PM
Animeeple was mentioned in another discussion thread active today so I started exploring something I missed years ago. If anyone is still looking for this little curiosity, it can be found at archive.org as version 0.4.18.

https://web.archive.org/web/20111213071108/http://www.animeeple.com/download/files/Animeeple.exe (21.9 MB)

As a fan of portable software, I can confirm it can run portably (install it, copy the program files to your portable, uninstall it).

It imports BVH/FBX/DAE and exports to DAE, which can load back into LW.

Ooh, very cool. Does it have the animations in it?

jwiede
12-04-2018, 01:10 PM
I know I've said this before, (at least a few times in the past couple years,) but because it hasn't happened yet: it would be totally cool if Lightwave finally got a joints system that was more compatible with third-party applications for mocap transfer (i.e., with Motion Builder, iPi DMC, Maya, Ikinema, etc.)

QFA. Incredibly overdue and direly needed, along with a full, proper NLA system, and a few other critical areas (modernized expressions, "modular" assemblies, etc.).

Without some serious attention/effort towards CA soon, LW's future in CA seems pretty bleak -- refocusing back on bones did them no real favors there, IMO.

raymondtrace
12-04-2018, 01:28 PM
Ooh, very cool. Does it have the animations in it?

As the animeeple.com site is defunct, there is no library of motions for the program to access. You have to bring your own.

It is a hobbled program without the online library but you can still mix your own motions together.

Docs:
https://web.archive.org/web/20110227204645/http://www.animeeple.com:80/documentation.html


...Without some serious attention soon, LW's future in CA seems pretty bleak...

That bleakness has always been present, which is why we must rely on tools like TAFA/RHiggit/Messiah/etc. I'd love to see some CA attention given in future releases.

Greenlaw
12-04-2018, 01:53 PM
Sigh! I wrote the bit quoted above over six years ago, and it's still true. It's frustrating because I don't think it would take much to update the existing joints system in LightWave to be fully compatible with Maya and other programs. The main issue for me is the weight map offset...it's confusing to work with and it's not 'standard', not even for LightWave.

In recent years, I've stuck to using with regular z-bones for rigging, and don't bother with joints unless I have a specific need for them. But I would still prefer using joints when I'm shuttling rigs and animation between other programs if it didn't require the extra work for compatibility.

Re: Animeeple, man, I haven't thought about that tool in ages. These days I'm tinkering with iClone and 3DXchange Pipeline for mocap editing.

Still using iPi Mocap Studio for capture. The devs are now working on supporting multiple Kinect 2 devices to a single computer; currently, you need a separate computer for each Kinect 2 and use distributed recording to sync them. (At the moment, I have 3 networked computers capturing from three Kinect 2 sensors.) Recently, they released a version with real-time mocap streaming. The feature is mainly for previews/rehearsal though...for high quality captures, you still want to do a separate tracking pass after capture.

wesleycorgi
12-04-2018, 02:01 PM
Ever since I dropped Mac-centric solutions, I have also been tinkering with iClone. Without much thought, I'm able to send rigged characters to several different applications. For example, I can augment my library of people in Anima3D quite easily by importing whatever I'm working on in iClone.

jwiede
12-04-2018, 02:48 PM
I'd love to see some CA attention given in future releases.

That's a fairly specialized area of development, and there's a shortage of easily-integrated, freely-licensable 3D CA infrastructure frameworks around. Even integrating OpenVDB-centric volumetrics was largely a "generalized" development task, as comparison -- the only specialized integration work fell into the surfacing/rendering domain, and we know they still have coverage there.

Also, if Newtek still has reasonable CA development capability available internally, there hasn't been much evidence of it in the last couple years. Genoma was largely built on scripting existing LW infrastructure (and bone-based, at that), as opposed to actual CA infrastructure improvements. I'd still expect a visible uptick in bug fixing of "CA-internal/-adjacent" code, even if they were intentionally hiding that active development was occurring in those areas, just from the need to work on solid foundations.

It could still be occurring, and I hope it is, don't get me wrong. I'm just saying there are some "hints" I'd expect to see if so, and I'm not really seeing them.

ConjureBunny
12-04-2018, 03:35 PM
Just FYI, I am aggressively adding to Glycon's roadmap, at the moment.

It seems like this whole character animation thing needs a solid, single solution, that can export to everything. So that's what I'm building.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZy0ElIhLYs

Right now, Glycon uses your VR headset, but frankly, there are a LOT of other ways I can capture motion. I'm going to add as many as I can.

Also, rigging and weight mapping are weirdly complicated in pretty much every 3D program. It shouldn't be like that. So that's on the roadmap, too. Why not? If I'm going to do this, no point in half-assing it :-D

-Chilton

ConjureBunny
12-04-2018, 03:37 PM
... I can't figure out how to delete this message ...

Greenlaw
12-04-2018, 03:42 PM
What message? :)