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mccabejc
01-24-2007, 11:13 AM
Years ago I was attempting to use LW for character animation (ie, developing realistic looking humans with dynamic cloth, hair, etc.), and finally gave up. Back then the state of the art was as follows (as far as I can recall, which ain't much :) ) :

1. project:Messiah was touted as the savior of LW character animation, until they decided to compete with LW and steered off into a new direction and tried to build a whole new modelling/animation/rendering system that became somewhat of a black hole (many delays and promises as I recall).

2. Shave and a Haircut was the (buggy) hair solution for a while, until Joe (whatshisname?) got upset and bailed from LW development and went to Maya or whatever.

3. Sasquatch became the remaining hair solution, although it was more of a fur solution.

4. Cloth was done (poorly) by the slow, buggy, and (IMO) very poorly implemented and user-unfriendly Motion Designer (?).

5. Rigid body dynamics was still not available in LW, though there was a couple of plugins that served the purpose, and as I recall LW 7 or so had a built in dynamics solution.

6. Pre-made character models that you could modify and use in LW were pretty much non-existent, and I ended up importing from Poser. I recall the general consensus was that REAL animators make their own models from scratch, point by point :)

Anyway, at the time I had some good success importing and modifying Poser models, but pretty much gave up on the whole thing since cloth and hair were so difficult to implement. Since then I've been checking in every year or so to see if things have changed.

So, my question:

Has anything improved in the LW character animation front?

Thanks.

Nicolas Jordan
01-24-2007, 11:50 AM
Some additional bone tools were added in Lightwave 8 like IK Booster and a few other making it easier to edit bones. I really liked the new functionality with the new time line for working with key frames.

paul summers
01-24-2007, 02:23 PM
Has anything improved in the LW character animation front?

NO NOT AT ALL.

cresshead
01-24-2007, 03:53 PM
NO NOT AT ALL....speaking from 8 to 9 not much of note i believe though in the nr future newtek are going to overhaul the character side of thongs for lw9x-lw10.

Wonderpup
01-24-2007, 04:36 PM
the character side of thongs

Mmm. sounds...interesting.:D

mccabejc
01-24-2007, 09:19 PM
It's funny reading thru some of the recent posts here. A little deja vu goin' on. Seems like the exact same discussions I remember from years ago. Lightwave is going to get a lot better real soon now. The Hub is still having problems. The character animation tools are REALLY going to improve real soon. The latest version of LW had a lot of stuff fixed "under the hood", and that will pave the way for some great features next time...

It's wierd. Guess I'll go back into hiding for another couple of years...

UnCommonGrafx
01-25-2007, 05:30 AM
No, nothing has improved. IKB has been added. Unless you are willing to be open-minded about it, it's not an improvement.

When you come back out in a couple years, everyone will be older. LW, too.

cresshead
01-25-2007, 05:41 AM
sorry typo i didn't catch with in the 5 min limit to edit!.....or was it a subliminal message???....who knows!

Speedmonk42
01-25-2007, 02:06 PM
I think our best window on wether or not things have changed this time round (not implying it didn't on others) is the 3rd party developers.

Call it the 'Worley' factor if you will.

I am eager to hear what the 'Worleys' have to say when 'the version that shall not be named' is released.

Anti-Distinctly
01-25-2007, 02:59 PM
CA hasn't been touched, plenty of other stuff has.

Dirk
01-26-2007, 08:02 AM
What about IK Booster? It doesn't seem to get the attention that it deserves, Imho.

TomT
01-26-2007, 08:37 AM
There's been so noble efforts out there, such as the Maestro rig, etc., but we're still waiting on the CA front. You can get a lot done in LW, but it's CA stuff is showing its age.

DaveW
01-26-2007, 12:31 PM
1. Messiah never decided compete with anybody, the goal has always been to integrate into an existing pipeline, not replace it. Making the core standalone gave them the ability to do more with the software and allows it to plug into apps other than Lightwave. It still plugs into LW almost exactly the same way it did originally. There's no modeling in messiah.

2. Joe Alter claims he got screwed over by NT and so he went on to develop Shave into a really kickass hair system for Cinema4d, Maya, Max, and XSI.

4&5. Motion Designer was a pain in the ***, and it was the "built-in" dynamics system in LW 7 (and 6).

6. There are more premade models available now, but no freebies that are photoreal. Turbosquid has some good stuff though.

LW 8 added a dopesheet and a timeline dopesheet (dopetrack). Dopetrack uses ridiculously thin lines to indicate keyframes which can make it a pain in the *** to select just one key to move. I think they were trying to copy Maya's timeline but forgot that Maya lets you set the thickness of the lines. And XSI and messiah have better timelines anyway. The dopesheet was put in the new scene/spreadsheet editor which means poor integration with the graph editor, a poor interface, and selection sets in the dopesheet are not accessible to the graph editor and vice versa. IK Booster is a half baked attempt to get MotionBuilder type rigs in LW. Unfortunately it doesn't work very reliably unless you cripple it by combining it with LW's standard IK, which removes the more interesting features like the IK/FK switching. They added onion skinning...except it only works on IK Booster bones and it's just a series of lines representing a bone so it's not terribly useful except maybe in special circumstances. The new dynamics system is still a pain in the *** to use and not nearly as powerful as competing solutions. Sasquatch is no longer the only game in town for hair/fur. Fiber Factory has made a come-back, and TrueHair is (or will be soon?) another option.

In short, not a whole lot has changed in the LW character animation front. I think you'd be better off using LW for modeling/rendering and using messiah or XSI for the animation.

Andyjaggy
01-27-2007, 09:16 AM
For the little amount of animation I have done in LW all I can say is that I much prefer 3D Max. However when it comes to modeling, texturing, and rendering I love LW. Modeling in Max somehow feels completley wrong and unintuitive for me.

cresshead
01-27-2007, 09:22 AM
character animation and animation in general in lightwave is a recognised weakspot in the recent lightwave developments with lw7.0 to 9.0...you CAN do character animation inlightwave though it's just not as flexible/powerful/easy to use as 3dsmax, maya, xsi etc.

SplineGod
01-27-2007, 11:10 AM
Years ago I was attempting to use LW for character animation (ie, developing realistic looking humans with dynamic cloth, hair, etc.), and finally gave up. Back then the state of the art was as follows (as far as I can recall, which ain't much :) ) :

This is still a difficult thing to do for one person to do in any 3d package.
You still see that most realistic characters with dynamics, hair etc are done by teams with lots of time. :)



1. project:Messiah was touted as the savior of LW character animation, until they decided to compete with LW and steered off into a new direction and tried to build a whole new modelling/animation/rendering system that became somewhat of a black hole (many delays and promises as I recall).

Its still around and is more powerful. The price has also come down. Its also possible these days to get animation to and from LW using fbx and mdd files.
Even blender which is free has some very nice character animation tools and it can load/save in LW formats.


2. Shave and a Haircut was the (buggy) hair solution for a while, until Joe (whatshisname?) got upset and bailed from LW development and went to Maya or whatever.

3. Sasquatch became the remaining hair solution, although it was more of a fur solution.

Youve got sasquatch as you already mentioned plus some additional ones have reappeared such as Fiber Factory: http://www.binaryartsinc.com/
Sensei also has some nice hair styling tools: http://www2.trueart.pl/Products/Plug-Ins/TrueHair/Graphics/
Ive also heard of others developing some other hair tools.


4. Cloth was done (poorly) by the slow, buggy, and (IMO) very poorly implemented and user-unfriendly Motion Designer (?).

The current clothfx is much more powerful then motion designer. It has a lot more options in terms of controlling and editing things. You can also metalink higher rez objects to lower rez meshes (essentially turning lower rez proxy meshes into deformers).


5. Rigid body dynamics was still not available in LW, though there was a couple of plugins that served the purpose, and as I recall LW 7 or so had a built in dynamics solution.
Impact was the only solution for awhile. LW now has HardFX which can also do quite a bit.


6. Pre-made character models that you could modify and use in LW were pretty much non-existent, and I ended up importing from Poser. I recall the general consensus was that REAL animators make their own models from scratch, point by point :)
On top of poser you also have quidam, which is fairly cheap: http://www.thebest3d.com/nsided/index.html
and things like the Make Human project which is free: http://www.dedalo-3d.com/
I still tend to model much of my own things but do rely on apps like this from time to time to get lots of background characters.


Anyway, at the time I had some good success importing and modifying Poser models, but pretty much gave up on the whole thing since cloth and hair were so difficult to implement. Since then I've been checking in every year or so to see if things have changed.[/quote/
Poser 7 seems to be able to do some decent cloth though Ive not tested it to see just how robust it or its hair solution is.

[quote]So, my question:

Has anything improved in the LW character animation front?

Thanks.

Several things have changed IMO for the better
These effect rigging, animation, motion management, deformations
and texturing:

Dope sheet/scene editor
dope track
IKBoost
Bone tools
Fly out panels
Relativity
Exporting/Importing Rig files
APS
Nodal (texturing and displacement)

On top of these theres lots of free and commerical
3rd party plugins that help such as:
Maestro
PLG IK and UV tools
Topix RV tools
Dodgys plugins
and more...

Lots of the inclusions have opened up LWs workflow for me in many ways for the better. :)

Nemoid
01-29-2007, 02:18 PM
Nothing improved so far.
and i think the wait is long.

js33
01-29-2007, 05:15 PM
Modo will have kick *** animation before LW is ever improved enough to really use for CA production. I still use LW for animation but gave up doing any CA as I don't have time to mess with workarounds and halfbaked frustrating tools. Yes I know Modo is developed by the same guys that did LW but they are doing some cool things now.

jbarker
01-30-2007, 02:01 PM
Modo will have kick *** animation before LW is ever improved enough to really use for CA production. I still use LW for animation but gave up doing any CA as I don't have time to mess with workarounds and halfbaked frustrating tools. Yes I know Modo is developed by the same guys that did LW but they are doing some cool things now.

Modo freaking rocks!

I like LW for modeling and rendering (character animation - what's that???) but downloaded the demo for Modo and could tell it was great for modeling within 2 minutes (possibly from steming from LW?). On a similar note, I downloaded the latest demo for XSI and would like to punch the person(s) responsible for such an unintuitive and convoluted piece of software - at least as far as modeling goes.

*Note: Of course it's only my tiny opinion. I'm thrilled you love XSI. No, I don't really want to punch anyone.

cresshead
01-30-2007, 03:51 PM
as much as i don't really get on with my copy of xsi foundation...i found it 'okay' but not 'wow'...still i do know you have to approach it as a new app and not take your 'baggage' of knowledge over from 3dsmax or lightwave and try n make it work like them...it's different....i went thru some dvd based training and that made the experience much better...though i still don't use it!...i'm VERY comfortable in 3dsmax and lightwave...

i tried the demo of modo a while back and didn't get on at all with it...YUK was my comment...and looking at some of the modo videos for texturing just makes me feel 'your blind' when texturing/surfacing in modo.....xsi learned the hard way by finally admitting that SHADER BALLS really do need to be in an app....

mdod has still to learn this i think:tsktsk:

also modo's 'kick /***' animation is PURE speculation....vapourware as we speak.

poor old wave!
01-30-2007, 05:46 PM
I put my money on Modos vaporware over LW's anything! LW's dev team doesn't have the talent to compete with these other companies... as you can all see for yourselves at this point.

User has been banned for the creation of multiple accounts and an obvious purpose to promote competing products.

Cageman
01-30-2007, 05:52 PM
Funny that someone with two posts in this forum pretends to know when and where LightWave will die as a capable and complementary app that can be used in conjunction with every other app out there. :)

ericsmith
01-30-2007, 06:09 PM
I put my money on Modos vaporware over LW's anything! LW's dev team doesn't have the talent to compete with these other companies... as you can all see for yourselves at this point.

You know, it's one thing to gripe about a company's product on a forum like this. But to come out and say that Newtek's staff doesn't have talent on their own forum is just rude and pointless. The fact that you've only made two posts on this forum, and both are basically worthless bashing, leads me to believe you are just immature and not worth listening to.

Eric

poor old wave!
01-30-2007, 06:29 PM
been using the LW for a long time, but never felt the need to come on these forums until now. I thought that my statement was a known fact, especially to anyone that uses other apps (even Blender). Was not intended to be a bash on the dev, just my own observation of the situation.

User has been banned for the creation of multiple accounts and an obvious purpose to promote competing products.

Speedmonk42
01-30-2007, 07:44 PM
Who is the dev team anyway? How big is it?

What is the sort of brief technical history of LW's dev? When they say 'they are re-writing the core' is that evolution, rebuilding a disturbed past or some combination of both?

And since this person brought it up, what was the nature of the original people leaving?

Jarno
01-30-2007, 07:52 PM
Oh jeez, not the whole old dev team and Modo thing again:bangwall:

---JvdL---

UnCommonGrafx
01-30-2007, 08:02 PM
I'm SO happy to see you say that, Jarno.

hehe

I'm glad I've mellowed on this topic. And the Marketeers.

Speedmonk42, do a web search in google to this effect.

ShawnStovall
01-30-2007, 08:48 PM
It seems to me that some people don't understand that in order for surface changes(e.g.tools,renderer)to be made, there must also be major core changes. It is a lot of work to totally redesign the base component of some thing, this is why it is taking them so long to make the major sifts needed to bring LightWave back up to par.

kevinone
01-30-2007, 08:51 PM
Poor old wave! Your name is a clue to me why you are here! If you hate LW so much why have you used it so long? Why have you felt the need to post on this forum? You obviously have nothing good to add to this forum, so you are not worth my time! What is up with some modo people, they sign up just to bash NT and push modo. I have my problems with lightwave, but the grass is not always greener on the other side! I think it would be best to let this thread Die or let poor old wave have it for its self.

Speedmonk42
01-31-2007, 12:17 AM
Speedmonk42, do a web search in google to this effect.
------------
Ok cool, will do. I can't say it was something I would have thought would be on the web. I have not been around LW for a very very long time. So I have no idea of any history, and I can't really say I am all that interested in it either. I can see now it is perhaps something that was hashed through endlessly in the past.


I am just asking who they are today because I am curious.

DiedonD
01-31-2007, 07:57 AM
Man everybody is complaining about CA. I use FK. I thought I should just cutt the c-rap and be on my way with the project. FK works just fine. Its prett easy to me. IK kinda .... I dont know, its odd.

Which programes out there should one consider, except Max n Maya. Someone mentions XSI, the other one wants to punch the dev team appart. How much is it anyway? I dont have a problem with CA so far, but if I ever do see a problem, which one would it be?

And Poor old Wave, get a life. Your either one of us with a different name, or your one of them trying to make us turn our backs on a very good app.
Either way trying to make us change minds with these techniques is laim, and insults our inteligence. Ya shoulda tried better, obviosly youve miscalculated with whom your dealing with here. Not one here is non-creative and stupid enough to fall for that. Thus none are on your level. Now... Be gone.

Dodgy
01-31-2007, 09:29 AM
The main problem with CA in LW is integration. A lot of things don't read other thing's results (like bone movement after IK etc). This means for basic CA work, LW is good, but if you want to start linking things together, you rapidly run into problems. If the dev team can do for CA what they have for rendering and so on so far, I'm thinking it could be good news...

tonybliss
01-31-2007, 09:38 AM
And Poor old Wave, get a life. Your either one of us with a different name, or your one of them trying to make us turn our backs on a very good app.


:stumped:

Ran out of Prozac, eh boy!!! Try some stool softner

DiedonD
02-01-2007, 01:27 AM
:stumped:

Ran out of Prozac, eh boy!!! Try some stool softner

Pardon!! I was talking to him ! Wasnt I? I dont see why you would comment like that !!? Hes a fake one of us making a low move.

And why are you linning up beside him? That is a question? Or are you him behind that fake mask?!!!

Furthermore I dont need you to tell me what pills I should or should not take!!!
Got that....BOY!!!

t4d
02-01-2007, 02:29 AM
I think the new team when they moved in, had already decide to leave CA untill after they fixed the bits everyone was using,.
"the LW render".

The old team already put CA way down the bottom of the to do list, so most studio's had already started to move to messiah or maya etc to do they animating.

the new team could not just fix it all in one go,.( rewrite )
so they went for making the render engine up to date and more ready for productions. and hopfully keep LW out there being used, which they have done.

but Now ( well now or never really ) it's time to attack the animation, data management and Scripting issues..

I Hope it comes soon LW has lost alot,.. some development Focus needs to be shown now on the main problem areas LW has got ( IKBooster i think showed they had no focus at all and pretty much dropped the ball on they own toe :cursin: )

Modo is not developing as quickly as most hoped ( I think alot jumped ship hoping they would... )
but it's slow develop is already showing, bugs and lets do it are way no matter what any ones says attuide ( the shader tree ) shows Lux has issues and the race for
full Modo animation Vs LW updated animation
for me ,..there at even odds at the moment.

but all that doesn't matter in the big picture

when you have Avid & Autodesk playing Big business in the 3D industry both have great products and want to control the industry for financial gain. that's what big business does ,..and they will do it with Features, workflow, new advancements.

LW used to be the cheapest, Now is just one of the bunch so Newtek need to work harder and show us what they can do with animation.
CA may only be a small part of the 3D industy, But it sure wins over alot of new users and makes current users alot more happier with they choice.

that's easy to see because we see these threads everyweek..:foreheads
and Some LW users get very Freaked out when talk of other apps touches they karma :argue: :screwy:

Cageman
02-01-2007, 02:47 AM
but Now ( well now or never really ) it's time to attack the animation, data management and Scripting issues..

I Hope it comes soon LW has lost alot,.. some development Focus needs to be shown now on the main problem areas LW has got ( IKBooster i think showed they had no focus at all and pretty much dropped the ball on they own toe :cursin: )

I think it will be quite some time before we see any changes in CA. The first step has been taken. Object ID handling is one building block of many more to come and I rather wait another year for a fully thought out animation system in LightWave. I don't want NT to bolt on something just to make CA 25% better than what it is today, but give headaches further down the the pipe beacause it wasn't 100% integrated.

tonybliss
02-01-2007, 02:48 AM
Furthermore I dont need you to tell me what pills I should or should not take!!!
Got that....BOY!!!

... so long as you take em :thumbsup: ......

--- the BOY that could :devil:

t4d
02-01-2007, 02:49 AM
I think it will be quite some time before we see any changes in CA. The first step has been taken. Object ID handling is one building block of many more to come and I rather wait another year for a fully thought out animation system in LightWave. I don't want NT to bolt on something just to make CA 25% better than what it is today, but give headaches further down the the pipe beacause it wasn't 100% integrated.

Yes agree:thumbsup:
it needs to go deep and add all the options and power the other have.

tonybliss
02-01-2007, 03:06 AM
I think it will be quite some time before we see any changes in CA. The first step has been taken. Object ID handling is one building block of many more to come and I rather wait another year for a fully thought out animation system in LightWave. I don't want NT to bolt on something just to make CA 25% better than what it is today, but give headaches further down the the pipe because it wasn't 100% integrated.

This is the main reason why we chose to integrate Messiah for CA on large projects. LW as said already is very capable of doing CA, but at the cost of a very rigid workflow as the process stands the unnerving chance to get broken. Apart from other related issues we could not of take that chance on a heavy production. I guess other studios, esp large ones that utilise heavy CA take that move on different levels based on either hype or well researched pipe integration as to what REALLY gives them the edge on their projects.

PS My students successfully use LW for CA(using T4D autorigger) for their projects after only a short time. They learn the tools, the workflow(s) and most importantly the limitations involved. This helps in avoiding heartbreaking surprises and ensuring that it is completely finished in time and of sufficient quality. Some like the rigging process once understood, others as most in the 3d world don't like it period.

Cheers !!!

DiedonD
02-01-2007, 03:12 AM
... so long as you take em :thumbsup: ......

--- the BOY that could :devil:

You really dont know when to shuttup dont ya !!!

Why dont you shut the f-uck up, before I put whole packages of pills up yours and bran new released from factory... CGChicken!!!!

tonybliss
02-01-2007, 03:31 AM
Diedond, as it has come to this, I must concede, and even go as far to apologise to you for having bring you to this level of communication by my prior post. Yes, it sucks. But it is very off track to continue this as it is unrelated to this thread and no help to us as individuals. So as I must, i let the wild horses go.

Cheers!!!!

colkai
02-01-2007, 04:22 AM
Children, children, please, behave yourselves.

I mean, it was a given that this thread would descend into "why LW is cr*p compared to everything else", but this level of behaviour is only doing one thing.

It is showing that there is anything BUT a professional and courteous group of folks here.
If you are after getting this thread locked, you are going about it in the right way that is for sure.

tonybliss
02-01-2007, 04:45 AM
me behave now :( :D

DiedonD
02-01-2007, 04:59 AM
CGSwammi, this all seems all too confusing to me. Id like to go through it with you, but perhaps not here, since this thread is for a different purpose. How about I send you a PM and we take it from there. Id like to nderstand what happened, cause I assume some codes have 2 different meaning between us. Perhaps I need to know them, and understand them.

What do you say, understanding cant hurt.

tonybliss
02-01-2007, 09:14 AM
Hey diedond, no probs, my sarcasm sometimes can get misconstrued, but initially no genuine offense was meant. I answer as necessary leaving the mind to accept the related output. PM me as you see necessary :)

Cheers!!

alifx
02-01-2007, 09:50 AM
why there are some guys who hate Lightwave , but they are still can't leave it....


If you hate Lightwave leave it and leave it's community alone!


Lightwave will be improved in Character animation because of the new Object ID system, and we must be patient there is a team of developers who are working hard 24 hours to make Lightwave the best or at least to catch up with the other softwares.

so stop these threads, we have hundreds of them you can do a search and read them.