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gamedesign1
07-31-2016, 09:32 AM
Hi All

I was thinking today that a lot of the reason why I don't do animation films is because I literally can't wait for the render times on my mid range PC (i7 2600 with 2x 750Ti)
I would really love to though. I have been looking at how a lot of people have been using Unreal to produce short films utilizing its realtime engine.
I was then thinking, why don't 3D apps add a realtime feature to their rendering engines? I really don't want to have to learn UE4 just to utilize its realtime engine.
Is it not possible to have a plugin in Lightwave (for example) that output to a realtime engine like UE4?

I would be really interested in your thoughts guys. Thanks

gamedesign1
07-31-2016, 10:57 AM
http://frostsoft.blogspot.co.uk/p/plugins.html

OlaHaldor
07-31-2016, 02:38 PM
I get what you mean, but getting animation and entire scenes into unreal is quite easy.. Drag-and drop. Even materials come through more or less OK. Some re-wiring may be needed.

Mesh files with skeletons can be brought in, and when you do an animation of said mesh/character, just export the skeleton with baked keys. In Unreal you can have that animated skeleton play at will. It won't even require any programming to get that going. Drag-and-drop all the way.

Using one base mesh with a skeleton, you will be able to create a lot of animation with minimal storage needed on the player end.

I have not yet brought a camera in, but I'm sure it's possible.

Lights, camera, action!

gamedesign1
07-31-2016, 04:28 PM
I get what you mean, but getting animation and entire scenes into unreal is quite easy.. Drag-and drop. Even materials come through more or less OK. Some re-wiring may be needed.

Mesh files with skeletons can be brought in, and when you do an animation of said mesh/character, just export the skeleton with baked keys. In Unreal you can have that animated skeleton play at will. It won't even require any programming to get that going. Drag-and-drop all the way.

Using one base mesh with a skeleton, you will be able to create a lot of animation with minimal storage needed on the player end.

I have not yet brought a camera in, but I'm sure it's possible.

Lights, camera, action!

Ok I will take a look at it again and see if I can get my head around it, thanks :)

Surrealist.
07-31-2016, 06:52 PM
Well it is pretty easy but materials you have to understand and work with to get things looking good. And the are certain technical things you will run into with bringing characters and animation in. Overall it is a real easy app to figure out. But you'll have to take your time with it.

On the cinematic side you might want to have a look at this:



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_q0K3HHqzg

I will not get around to finishing the entire series right away. But this will get you going.

gamedesign1
08-01-2016, 01:02 PM
Thanks for your comments guys, have been playing around with UE4 and its easy :)

gamedesign1
08-01-2016, 03:14 PM
Well it is pretty easy but materials you have to understand and work with to get things looking good. And the are certain technical things you will run into with bringing characters and animation in. Overall it is a real easy app to figure out. But you'll have to take your time with it.

On the cinematic side you might want to have a look at this:


I will not get around to finishing the entire series right away. But this will get you going.

I am having trouble exporting animations from Lightwave to UE4 via FBX. I can't see how I get them to work. Could you give me some pointers? :)

I thought that if I animated everything in Lightwave I could then export the FBX containing all of the animations.

Surrealist.
08-01-2016, 09:21 PM
There are several things that can go wrong. But it is nothing I can help with without specific info. In general the simplest thing to do is make sure you have a rig with no constraints. I think RH rigs allow you to do this. You have a control rig and a rig that gets the animation baked to. You don't want to send your rig to UE with the control rig. Only a rig with an FK setup that is the actaul deform bones. But these are just general suggestions. You will have to give more specifics.

djwaterman
08-01-2016, 10:06 PM
While we're on this topic, is it viable to use Unreal for an arch-viz walk through? I suggested something like this to a possible client and may have to follow up on it.

jeric_synergy
08-01-2016, 10:32 PM
While we're on this topic, is it viable to use Unreal for an arch-viz walk through? I suggested something like this to a possible client and may have to follow up on it.
My guess is YES: the rendering is pretty nice, and performance on the VR machines I've seen high.

gamedesign1
08-02-2016, 03:47 AM
While we're on this topic, is it viable to use Unreal for an arch-viz walk through? I suggested something like this to a possible client and may have to follow up on it.

I would say definitely

- - - Updated - - -


There are several things that can go wrong. But it is nothing I can help with without specific info. In general the simplest thing to do is make sure you have a rig with no constraints. I think RH rigs allow you to do this. You have a control rig and a rig that gets the animation baked to. You don't want to send your rig to UE with the control rig. Only a rig with an FK setup that is the actaul deform bones. But these are just general suggestions. You will have to give more specifics.


I was actually talking about just positional animation of objects at this stage.

- - - Updated - - -

Can i not use mdd bakes for object and bone animations?

Red_Oddity
08-02-2016, 03:55 AM
You can't do positional animation (though cameras support this in Unreal when importing through Matinee)
If you need positional animation, you need to add a single joint / bone, and skin the object and animatie the joint/bone.

Also, as for realtime rendering in a program, as far as i know, LW is one of the few programs that doesn't do this, or at least not without making it looking like a 10 year old OpenGL render, (ADSK has focused a lot on this the last few updates with Viewport 2.0 and ShaderFX, which actually works decently enough since 2016 ext2, yes, even i was surprised, a new Maya feature that actually works well enough for production)

gamedesign1
08-02-2016, 07:18 AM
You can't do positional animation (though cameras support this in Unreal when importing through Matinee)
If you need positional animation, you need to add a single joint / bone, and skin the object and animatie the joint/bone.

Also, as for realtime rendering in a program, as far as i know, LW is one of the few programs that doesn't do this, or at least not without making it looking like a 10 year old OpenGL render, (ADSK has focused a lot on this the last few updates with Viewport 2.0 and ShaderFX, which actually works decently enough since 2016 ext2, yes, even i was surprised, a new Maya feature that actually works well enough for production)

Lets see what LightWave does in their next release :)

Surrealist.
08-02-2016, 10:38 AM
I was actually talking about just positional animation of objects at this stage.

Can i not use mdd bakes for object and bone animations?

Unreal does not support point cache data yet. And when they do it will likely be Alembic.

With Unity it is a plugin I think you can install. But CryEngine supports it.

As mentioned if you want something animated externally you have to attach a bone, animate it, export it, and bring it into Unreal as a Skeletal Mesh.

However you can animate any actor in Unreal using the Sequencer. Add any item to the sequencer in the same way you add the camera, (check ,my tutorial) and simply keyframe it there in the timeline.

You can also add effects like explosions and so on, then key frame them to start at given points etc.

gamedesign1
08-03-2016, 05:29 AM
Unreal does not support point cache data yet. And when they do it will likely be Alembic.

With Unity it is a plugin I think you can install. But CryEngine supports it.

As mentioned if you want something animated externally you have to attach a bone, animate it, export it, and bring it into Unreal as a Skeletal Mesh.

However you can animate any actor in Unreal using the Sequencer. Add any item to the sequencer in the same way you add the camera, (check ,my tutorial) and simply keyframe it there in the timeline.

You can also add effects like explosions and so on, then key frame them to start at given points etc.

Thanks. I have a lot of stuff already animated and would rather not have to do it all again. It looks like vertex animation is supported in the next version (4.13). I wonder if that includes importing baked animation.

Not tried CryEngine yet

Red_Oddity
08-05-2016, 05:09 AM
As far as we can tell through tests with 4.13 it seems to support transform animation (though it will assign a new material for every mesh attached to a transform, so killing your framerate due to not being able to batch, but it can be solved by simply reassigning a single material)

Another really cool feature is the ability to export vertex animation and have Unreal turn it into a skinned mesh, it will try to place joints where needed so it no longer is a vertex cache but a skinned joint/bone animation.