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Halma
Nervous Wreck (II) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jan 2004

posted posted 01-05-2004 10:58

Hi,
I am a newbie in 3D animation, and I know that this is likely to be a very stupid question, but I decided to be brave

I've noticed that a lot of animation is done by painstaking and difficult work, much of it is often somewhat repetitious. I was wondering if there is any software which simplifies some things.. such as collision-testing, moving of complicated objects (such as a bicycle, car, bird), and of course character moving..

For example say I want my character to sit on a chair, or mount and ride a bike.. Is there any software that provides something like a "template" for these common elements.. Maybe something that provides a basic framework for the motion and allows you to change it as you need?

Thanks in advance!

Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

posted posted 01-05-2004 12:01

Most of the higher end functions have this capability built into them, such as expressions and maxscripts in 3D Studio MAX, lingo in Maya and so on. 3D Studio MAX, for example, has a built-in script set for collision testing (the Reactor Dynamics Simulator) and character animation (Character Studio). 3D Studio MAX's Curve Editor also alows you to automate repetative actions, such as rotating round and round (a bicycle wheel spinning) so that you naimate it once and tell it to extend exponentially and repeat forever. You can then take this animation and alter it (the bicycle slows down, for example).

In the lower-end scale...I have no idea, only having dealt with the higher end applications for any length of time.

Halma
Nervous Wreck (II) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jan 2004

posted posted 01-06-2004 06:39


Thanks for the info... one more question though: How powerful can a script/lingo be? What can it do or can't do?

I read somewhere that for the Lord of the Ring films, the battle scenes with thousands of people were done with a program called MASSIVE, in which every unit has its own eyes and mind, and using its AI finds other units to engage with and kill. In the end they rendered all of this... So you could say they implemented something like Quake III Arena with thousands of bots, but of course, with photorealistically rendered graphics.

A 3D Max script wouldn't be able to do something like that, right?

So where does the line between can and can't do fall?

Another example is lip-synching.. I think it could be done automatically to some extent, has anybody done this?


Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

posted posted 01-06-2004 06:52

Actually, MAXScript can do that...Character Studio now, wth version 4.2, has that capability. It's called a Crowd Controller. it acts much like an intuitive particle system, and is very, very complicated to set up. There can be literally thousands of variables (if you so choose to have them) that affect how various 'particles' move and flow around obstructions, what they avoid, what they are attracted to, what they do battle with, etc.

Halma
Nervous Wreck (II) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jan 2004

posted posted 01-07-2004 18:15

Wow.. Character Studio sounds impressive.. Does Maya have this also? What about other programs like LightWave, Houdini, or SoftImage?

Thanks again


Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

posted posted 01-18-2004 04:56

Character Studio is something that's only built into 3D Studio MAX. I'm sure the other applications have their own versions of it, but not having used them to any real extent, I really couldn't tell you.

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