View Full Version : Muscles for Lightwave

09-09-2006, 04:25 PM
How would we do something like this on lightwave?


The only way I know to make muscles on lightwave actually is using muscle bones and morph targets.
Muscle bones are not easy to setup on lightwave, I'd like it would be a one click operation.

09-09-2006, 04:52 PM
On top of the muscle bones you would add softfx. Works a treat for such motion. You may even be able to get the volume changes through softfx, as well... But that may require a bit of clothfx, too.

As to the one touch click operation...

09-09-2006, 05:47 PM
Muscle bones are not easy to setup on lightwave

Try using MG_musclebone plugin. It does all the hard work for you!


09-11-2006, 03:55 AM
Any other method of using an object with muscle form to deform the skin geometry?

09-11-2006, 04:48 AM
There's a plugin out there called polyfit which allows you to use one object's geometry to deform another object, but it can quite slow on many polys. The best bet is to use a muscle object with muscle bones, and softfx to do the wobbling and then metalink to attach your character to it.

09-11-2006, 04:52 AM
SplineGod's "Muscle Deformer" tutorial using PolyFit at http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/support/ could be something. Make the muscles using clothfx and metalink. (Note, I seem to recall clothfx won't work properly with morph/displacement unless you use the metalink plug, just a hint).

telamon posted another method over at Spinquad, I'm no rigger, but maybe it could be altered to simulate muscle weight as well.

09-14-2006, 08:57 AM
The links are really usefull

Thanks all for clear things about muscle bones.

It seems the best process for muscles on lightwave is using muscle bones and morph targets automatic associated with joint morph/ joint morph plus.
So the bone will activate an endomorph and muscle bone will help to keep the deformation correctly.

The polyfit plugin don't seems to be so good to deform the skin, but maybe it can give us the result once metalink will not allow multiple instances.

The question I have now is:

If we modelate the muscle with the shape we want and use a muscle bone as it's deformer + soft effects on it, is it possible to use metalink to apply the object deformation on the skin?

I know metalink will allow it, but is it possible to have multiple muscles associated with metalink for the same object?

09-14-2006, 09:34 AM
Why not model the muscles within the same mesh?

To be honest, I myself would apply soft FX/ muscle bones to a low poly version f your mesh, animate that and metalink the low rez mesh to the high rez one.

09-14-2006, 09:50 AM
You might get into skin deformation problems if the skin itself is using clothfx, above I refered to using clothfx on the muscles while using the polyfit plugin. If this is possible, I do not know. Pooby made some valuable points in this thread. http://www.spinquad.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8206&page=1&pp=15
Proper muscle deformation is not possible in lightwave, maybe it is possible if one buy Syflex for lightwave. Quite expensive though. I have a project resting using the polyfit plugin, but it won't be done just yet, will post it of course if it is a success.
Think I tested something almost simillar to what you say using metalink, but got deformation problems as of dense polys. Read some other people got it to work, but never saw any examples on it.
The link above also explains some of LW's problem as for Muscle simulation.

09-14-2006, 10:52 AM

The spawn rig looks great, but it's muscles bone and endomorphs.

The muscle bones plugins are usefull. We just need patience and creativity.

It's really easy to associate endomorphs and bones automatically using joint morph on lightwave, but we would need many endomorphs per bone, once we cannot associate the bone weightmap with the endomorph without scripts/expressions.

The conclusion I have now is that we can't do a realistic muscle simulation on lightwave. Not the same they do easelly with Muscle TK on Maya


and ACT on Max.


09-14-2006, 11:07 AM
I haven't had time to try them out yet but would the new stress map function be helpful in this?

09-14-2006, 11:13 AM
I haven't had time to try them out yet but would the new stress map function be helpful in this?

For wrinkles I think it can be great. For muscle simulation it could be used to some degree, but not for realistic simulation.

09-15-2006, 05:51 PM
For wrinkles I think it can be great. For muscle simulation it could be used to some degree, but not for realistic simulation.

Maybe it can.

Well possibly if stress map works with normal maps.

You could possibly sculpt the muscle deformations in ZBrush, export as a normal map, and use stress map with the normal map to create the muscle flexes.

I don't know if this would work, or be practical, but it's just an idea.

09-15-2006, 05:53 PM
What we need is Stress map as a node we can pump into bump maps or other nodes...

09-16-2006, 07:33 AM
Using morph targets ( endomorphs or displacement maps ) on lightwave to simulate muscles assiociated with muscle bones is the only functionally solution we have. The problem is that we would need a function wich limitate the portion of the morph that will be activated.

So we can do complete body morphs and active area will be only the weightmap of the moved bone.

Otherwise, we would need to create a big sort or different endomorphs for each area.

When the bone moves, we can automatically associate endomorphs using joint morph plugin.

To aniumate muscles manually is a crazy unaceptable thing!

Isn't there any programmer here at this list wich could do a script to create real muscles on lightwave?