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Thread: LW11 / Endorphin Pipeline - SOLVED

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    Avid 'Waver ALPforce's Avatar
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    LW11 / Endorphin Pipeline - SOLVED

    The result is here : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9zL9aedufzM

    I am creating with LW for more than 14 years now, but have never done character animation before, believe it or not .
    However, some months ago NaturalMotion had a sale of Endorphin at a 90% discount (1000$), and I decided to jump at it.
    Now, with some free time on my hands, I wanted to see what would the pipeline look like, and, naturally, got stuck with some problems. After solving those problems I have decided to post the result and instructions on Youtube.

    So here you go - a TEST

    P.S.
    Instructions are in the details of the video. Any likes would be appreciated

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    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Hey that's really neat! Does it do exploding rigs/dynamics?
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

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    Avid 'Waver ALPforce's Avatar
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    Yep, it seems to be

    Quote Originally Posted by jasonwestmas View Post
    Hey that's really neat! Does it do exploding rigs/dynamics?
    Endorphin seems to use AI (to some extent) and physical simulation of rigged environment. You build your characters and environments out of bone structures, collision, mass and fluid-reaction objects. The building blocks are ball, disc, box and capsule , for each of the object type. The building blocks can be scaled, rotated and moved, but not deformed, i.e. you can not create a trapeze out of the box object.

    Endorphin does not do exploding dynamics, that's the job for Lightwave's Bullet. If you wish to explode something in endorphin you would need to meticulously build your object as a prop character out of building block hierarchies and then, at the said moment, apply force events to each of the parts.

    However you can time bone sever events if you want arms/legs/heads flying off for exploding characters.
    The workflow takes getting used to, but it is doable, especially if you follow all of the tutorials and read the help closely.

    The neat thing in Endorphin is the workflow with other software packages. You build your character in Modeler, rig it in Modeler/Layout, create basic animations in Layout, export the character into Endorphin, export its animations too, and then in Endorphin you mix the animations with character simulation and behaviors. At the end you export the animation and merge it with your character rig in Layout - and you are ready to render.

    For instance, if you make a character that you want to run, throw a ball of a balcony, then jump off that balcony onto the neighboring roof, run some more and pick the ball, all you do in LW is make your character with a run animation, the rest is in Endorphin and then back into LW for more of the scene.

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    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Yep, it's the limb severing of a character I'm interested in. Granted, I would have to find a way for the arm geometry to separate. (With simple robots it's easy). I rarely see that done in CG except for huge budget films. . . which is why I want to do it and it makes things more believable for certain types of situations. Thank you for your details on this, I really appreciate it.
    Last edited by jasonwestmas; 10-20-2012 at 09:28 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasonwestmas View Post
    Yep, it's the limb severing of a character I'm interested in. Granted, I would have to find a way for the arm geometry to separate. (With simple robots it's easy). I rarely see that done in CG except for huge budget films. . . which is why I want to do it and it makes things more believable for certain types of situations. Thank you for your details on this, I really appreciate it.
    Well, it is fairly easy, all you have to do is to break the parenting chain and create the torn limb model seprately , replacing the objects (both of the character and of the limb) at the given frame. You could even use gushing blood to mask the effect.

    There is a problem with that, however. Endorphin only simulates its own character, adapted to the geometry of your character's rig. And sever events only sever whole limbs, i.e. you can't cut a bone in half in Endorphin. The logical solution would be to double the bones on each side of the limb in LW and use bone dynamics to make them swivel and jerk around. (i.e. if you are separating the forearm, you make two forearm bones , one is attached to your character , the other to the wrist, each one handles its own piece of forearm... brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr kind-of bad to even think of that , I hate blood LOL)

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    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Yeah that makes total sense to me so far. So it seems endorphin just needs a jointed/area to sever a FK arm or neck etc. would make it possible to sever the connection wherever you wish as long as there is a point of separation in the bone hierarchy.

    Dang, the demo scenes keep crashing the Learning edition. Does that happen to you too?


    Edit: Says I have a processor warning. I guess it doesn't run on my video card or CPU?
    Last edited by jasonwestmas; 10-20-2012 at 10:12 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasonwestmas View Post
    Yeah that makes total sense to me so far. So it seems endorphin just needs a jointed/area to sever a FK arm or neck etc. would make it possible to sever the connection wherever you wish as long as there is a point of separation in the bone hierarchy.

    Dang, the demo scenes keep crashing the Learning edition. Does that happen to you too?
    I am not using Endorphin LE since I bought it ... As far as I remember, some of the scenes did crash in LE, but only the heavy ones. If you want the tutorials some guy posted them here

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    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    oh I see, the introductory panel is buggy or something. If I close that and not use the link in it and rather use the File>open menu then it works fine.
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jasonwestmas View Post
    ... Says I have a processor warning. I guess it doesn't run on my video card or CPU? ...
    It appears to run off CPU and use any OpenGL video card, I am running Endorphin in similarly easy manner both on i7-3820 / QuadroFX1700 desktop and on E6600 / ATI Radeon notebook ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by ALPforce View Post
    The result is here : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9zL9aedufzM

    I am creating with LW for more than 14 years now, but have never done character animation before, believe it or not .
    Niiiice THAT'S IT !!! Going to request the workplace to buy me Endorphin cause we already have LW11

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    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Thanks for this pipeline info, but you should bake the description you have on youtube in to this forum, and also a pdf document, that would be good.
    As I understand it you need to use another fbx exporter from maya and cant rely on Lw fbx? if such..I wont actually bother until Newtek works something else out actually?

    Michael

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    Goes bump in the night RebelHill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    As I understand it you need to use another fbx exporter from maya and cant rely on Lw fbx?
    Cant see why...

    you sure fbx was setup properly in LW before sending the character to endorphin..? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clia0...feature=g-list
    LSR Surface and Rendering Tuts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RebelHill View Post
    Cant see why...

    you sure fbx was setup properly in LW before sending the character to endorphin..? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clia0...feature=g-list
    Watched your explanations, good point !

    Well, as I said in my message, I have never done character animation before and wanted to try it out after watching Lino Grandi's rigging DVD I got with LW11. Being a tech-related animator/modeler I am used to create bone rigs in Modeler with skelegons and I was never particularly driven to try joint rigs , although I am pretty sure skelegon-driven z-bones can be turned into joints in Layout by bone type (correct me if I am wrong). Oh yeah, and Endorphin does use joints by default...

    From what I gathered after watching the rigging DVD, (and if we are working with z-bones) it is not very good practice to create 90-deg bone structures and locked (fully straight) limbs, since it begins to interfere with IK setup and because it is rarely a natural pose for a character.

    A question : in the joint rig you have suggested, how do you create pitch-based IK setup for arms if you cannot rest the bones/joints in the directions that are not the default ones? Or do you mean they have to simply coincide with 90-degree angles of the coordinate system (i.e. do you mean that x-axis, for instance is allowed to point in z-direction?) ?

    Also, with Genoma coming in LW11.5, my intent was to learn how to create character rigs in LW, animate them, send them to endorphin for dynamics and return the finished fbx back to merge with LW scenes, i.e. I do not intend to do allot of mocap in the foreseeable future and do not have the necessary equipment / software to do so. But you are right, I would need to try to implement your suggestions into the workflow and do some tests on the matter...

    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    Thanks for this pipeline info, but you should bake the description you have on youtube in to this forum, and also a pdf document, that would be good.
    As I understand it you need to use another fbx exporter from maya and cant rely on Lw fbx? if such..I wont actually bother until Newtek works something else out actually?
    Michael
    When I find something more substantial to write, I will create a pdf and maybe set up another video tutorial on the matter ... it seems I need to do some more tests ...
    However, you definitely should bother ! As RebelHill said in his videos, FBX is just a language, and every software uses it differently, not all of them translate the data correctly, and there is always some messing up involved in export preparations. What matters is the end result and LW has never let me down, for more than 14 years. Every time, stunning results, finished at the last possible moment and delivered to the clients

  14. #14
    I wish I'd known about the Endorphin sale.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AbstractTech3D View Post
    I wish I'd known about the Endorphin sale.
    I played with LE at first and thought it would be a nice addition, but I do not remember signing up. However somehow I got their email a week before the sale was over ... But it still requires a fair bit of animating I mean dynamics are dynamics, but if the character is not very compatible with audiomotion ones, you can't really use the FBX it comes with, you would still need to animate it in LW, and that's where the fun begins

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