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View Full Version : How Good is LW Rigs with Human Characters ?



RorrKonn
04-28-2013, 09:48 PM
I watched the Video ,Very cool.
But really couldn't get a idea of how well LW Rigs for human characters where

https://www.lightwave3d.com/new_features/

So how good is LW Rigs with human characters ?
I'm sure LW has weightmap rigs but what other tools for Rigs does LW have ?
I Don't know LW's slang.
How's LW deal with knees & elbows ?
Thanks

nickdigital
04-28-2013, 10:12 PM
The rigs are fine. Your question is kinda vague. What sort of information are you asking for specifically?

Dexter2999
04-29-2013, 07:53 AM
The rigs work but it isn't "magic".

Look over at RebelHill.net who sells rigging plug ins and rigging training.
http://www.rebelhill.net/html/rhr.html

If you scroll down near the bottom of the page you will see where he gives like 3 hours of free downloads as a preview of his extensive course.

When you talk about knees and elbows, I don't know if you are asking if the joints are automatically imbued with constraints to limit movement or if you are asking about the quality of deformations. For some reason, in either case, I don't think you will be ecstatic about your findings.

RorrKonn
04-29-2013, 03:52 PM
Especially for knees & elbows ya need more then weight map rigs. ya need the extra rig tools that gives ya that extra help.
I don't know if LW has the extra rig tools or what you would call them.
Not concerned if there automatic as long as it can be done manually.
So I'm asking if LW has them mostly for deformation & restraints are helpful.

I can rig characters in Truespace,C4D.

jwiede
04-30-2013, 09:38 AM
Lightwave supports corrective bone-driven morphs, and constraints can be implemented via expressions, which would deal with the two "biggies" you're likely to run into with those types of joints. It won't necessarily be quite as easy as in other pkgs, but it is quite doable, it'll just require a bit more manual tweaking.

If you can better describe your needs (number of "hero" chars in scene vs less complex rigged chars, etc.) it will be much easier for folks here to give you estimates on feasibility.

Ryan Roye
04-30-2013, 10:04 AM
Motion aspects of Lightwave are excellent for all types of rigs. There are plenty of tools to achieve great animation and good rig control setups with Lightwave quickly and efficiently. Having used many other animation tools (both 2d and 3d), Lightwave is among the best I've worked with.

Getting the best deforms is a little more challenging in comparison as hinted above.

jwiede
04-30-2013, 10:34 AM
Motion aspects of Lightwave are excellent for all types of rigs. There are plenty of tools to achieve great animation and good rig control setups with Lightwave quickly and efficiently. Having used many other animation tools (both 2d and 3d), Lightwave is among the best I've worked with.
Hmm...I wouldn't go quite that far. LW has some significant limitations when it comes to mixing different "motion sources" at the same time (think layering keyframe-interpolated rig-driven anim on top of dynamics, or mocap, for example) compared to other packages. It can be done in LW, but usually involves baking sources and then manually adding in others keyframe-by-keyframe (a destructive workflow), instead of supporting the automatic layering and blending of motion sources (non-destructive NLA-like workflow) as is common in other pkgs.

Greenlaw
04-30-2013, 10:43 AM
Like in any other 3D program, it comes down to the artist's skill level and how well he knows his tools. For elbows, knees and other joints, as described above, you can get some very advanced deformations using joint-driven corrective morphs or other displacement techniques. If you need something really tricky, third party plug-ins like SmartMorph can help. (Note: I don't know if this tool works in 11.x--it's been a while since I last used it. Maybe somebody can confirm?)

One of the 'gotchas' in LightWave is that if you want corrective morphs, you can't just deform your character and start sculpting or tweaking points in the joint area like you can in other programs--this tweaking has to be done in Modeler on an un-posed object. Certainly, it's doable--I have to do this often--but this disconnect isn't efficient and can get frustrating with some characters. Typically, you pose the character's limbs in Layout, open the mesh in Modeler (using the Hub or at least with the 'Save and Update' feature enabled, whatever that mode is called,) tweak the un-posed mesh and watch what happens to the posed figure in the viewport in Layout. Repeat as many times as necessary until you have what you want. Where it gets frustrating is when Layout decides it's not going to add or update the morph dynamically. (To be fair, this behavior is much improved nowadays but Layout can still get fussy sometimes.)

Hopefully, we'll get the ability to make corrective morphs in Layout.

Oh yeah, the lack of weight painting in Layout is another 'gotcha'--different vmap but same issues.

But, the end result is what counts, and there's little reason you can't get excellent deformations with LightWave if you know the tools and you know what you're doing.

As somebody mentioned above, I recommend looking at Rebel Hill's training videos. If you want to shortcut it, get his RHiggit system. Even better, do both. :)

G.

Greenlaw
04-30-2013, 11:14 AM
...LW has some significant limitations when it comes to mixing different "motion sources" at the same time (think layering keyframe-interpolated rig-driven anim on top of dynamics, or mocap, for example) compared to other packages.

In relation to this discussion, I have to agree with that, but only in part. I'm doing my animation and mocap editing in Motion Builder and, yes, features like Animation Layers, the ability to create Takes, and the Story Editor (MB's NLE,) go way beyond LightWave's capability. (FYI, in practice MB's tools are not truly 'non-destructive'. Believe me, I've trashed many scenes in MB, even when I thought I was being careful.) :)

But, in my case anyways, I feel we're talking about two different things. Even though I'm using Motion Builder for animation, in the end I'm transferring only the motion data to LightWave, so the final rigging and deformation quality is really dependent on LightWave's capabilities. If I wasn't so obsessed with using 'homebrew' mocap these, I would most likely be doing it all in LightWave because, as much as I like using Motion Builder, I would prefer to work in a single animation program if I could.

Either way though, things would be way better if we had morph editing and weight painting in Layout--this was probably the main reason we started using Maya in the Box for rigging, animation and mesh deformations.

G.

chikega
05-02-2013, 06:36 AM
Either way though, things would be way better if we had morph editing and weight painting in Layout--this was probably the main reason we started using Maya in the Box for rigging, animation and mesh deformations.
G.

I totally agree. When I was trying to create a morph for a dental finishing disc, I had no reference points. I was trying to deform it in space. I wanted so badly to modify the disc against the tooth in Layout. I gave up and went with simulating the bending of the disc using Bullet Dynamics which turned out well.