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Normal Topic Scaleable bones in UT99 (Read 1240 times)
mcfarrel
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Scaleable bones in UT99
Feb 13th, 2014 at 9:22am
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I would like to point out this feature. There IS possibility to create scaleable bones even in UT99 (possibly in Unreal too - I did not tested this but engine core is same and since 227 skeletal models added...)

I just came to this problem by accident, but...

Normally I model in 3dsMax and in several cases I need to add helper objects into the skeleton structure. Yet in max format heleper object in bone structure is nothing more than a heler object, but when You export the model into PSK the helper changes to bone/skeleton system joint.

So for every link helper-helper and helper-bone the export routine creates a bone of which root bone/helper becomes a start joint and daughter bone/helper a end joint. Thuis far nothing tells there is any difference in comparison with standard bone object, but just thus far.
If Your model is animated and You visualizes the bone structure (e.g. import the PSK/PSA into Milkshape) You ca clearly see the newly created bone (helpe-helper or helper-bone) link not only reorients, but even resizes accorind to the start and end joints movement. This is due to the fact the previously nonexistent bone (created by psk export) does not have the fixed length property (as it does not existed!)

I did not tested this behaviour in such way, I am using helper objects as a kind of srtucture splitter (weapon animations - animate slide moveet during shooting cycle, magazine replacement, various reloading anims using skleletal models), but I suppose there is possibility to create "complex" animations for blobs or biogel using relatively small ammount of bones (or "bones") - something like eight bone octagonal structure simulating the sphere...

This might came in handy for complexly shaped roughly spherical object (e.g. high poly model of blob), You have to animate.

As I said before I did not extensively tested this yet, nor I have a how to on this topic. But I will go through this and do further research.
  
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Turboman.
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Re: Scaleable bones in UT99
Reply #1 - Feb 16th, 2014 at 10:53am
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Isn't the effect the same as scalable bones with IK solvers? because i know Unreal/UT PSK format supports that and scaling a bone over the bone's length is very possible. I commonly use the IK method for character animation with items (krall spear) or a breathing effect.


Interesting discovery about the helpers though, i've always been afraid to attempt to export those ingame (i've mostly used helpers for vertex anims).
  
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Re: Scaleable bones in UT99
Reply #2 - Feb 16th, 2014 at 10:59pm
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Turboman. wrote on Feb 16th, 2014 at 10:53am:
Isn't the effect the same as scalable bones with IK solvers? because i know Unreal/UT PSK format supports that and scaling a bone over the bone's length is very possible. I commonly use the IK method for character animation with items (krall spear) or a breathing effect.


Yes that cts exactly the same, butfor older versions of 3dsmax (pre 2010 I suppose) this is kind complicated or so).
Also using of helpers is useful for some additional animations You can attach things that can move freely by itself but also can be controlled by main model (e.g. something like skaarj claws, pistons etc)

Turboman. wrote on Feb 16th, 2014 at 10:53am:
Interesting discovery about the helpers though, i've always been afraid to attempt to export those ingame (i've mostly used helpers for vertex anims).


Helper object is used to terminate the biped tree branch so there is support for handling bipped object in PSK/PSA export. As far as I knowe the varions objects in 3ds max include bones are just piece of geometry vith various additional parameters (like be excluded from rendering for helpers or to be included in IK solving for bones etc)...
  
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