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Author Topic: Rigging and Model Importing Tips: Updated June 7th  (Read 2083 times)
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Nanobuds
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    « on: April 23, 2012, 04:31:53 PM »


    Hello KC:MM!

    This is a tutorial that will give tips about creating quality rigs and model imports for Brawl. I will not go over the basics of rigging; there is already a tutorial for that.

    This tutorial will cover the following:

    Part 1: Aligning the model with the bones
    Part 2: Rigging tips
    Part 3: Fixing model quality
    Part 4: Reducing File Size
    Part 5: Special Effects for your models

    What you need
    -3ds Max 2010-2011 (this tutorial uses 2010)
    -The latest Brawl Box
    -Basic knowledge of the use of 3ds Max and Brawl Box
    -Patience
    -Swag

    Other Stuff
    -I will be rigging Brotherhood Ezio Auditore during the tutorial. Other models will vary, and may need different adjustments that this one.
    -If you have questions regarding these tips, feel free to ask. Don't spam me with PM's though.
    -NEVER Move or Scale bones during the rigging process. That will screw over your model.
    -This is my way of making imports better. There may be other ways and opinions, but this is how I do it.


    Part 1: Aligning the model with the bones
    1. Merge the bones and model together, making a basic alignment, and add an Edit Mesh modifier while all the polygons are selected. This will make model edits a bit easier.
    2. Change the model view to Wireframe.
    3. Edit the various areas to fit with the bones better.

    Part 1a: Arms and Hands
    As you can see, the arms aren't lined up with the bones too well.
    The best thing to do is vertex edit the area to fit with the bones easier... use the edit mesh modifier to do this. If you need some tips with vertex editing, you can find various tutorials around the internet. However, by the end of editing, the objects should line up with the bones like this:
    Notice how the ArmJ bone  is where the elbow is suppose to be. The center of rotation for your arm is in your elbow, so make sure the ArmJ is in the center of the elbow area. There should be an even about of verts on either side of the bone.

    Now for hands... try to line them up like this:
    Notice how I distributed the verts evenly around the joints. This will help make the rigging process easier. Also take not on the location of the bones.

    Fingers tend to terrify people. However, it's just as easy as rigging arms. The only problem that people have is lining them up correctly. If you do this, then rigging will be a million times easier. These hand's aren't even Ezio's... they're SCV's StarKiller's. If lining up the hands is near impossible, just borrow hands from another model.
    Part 1b: Legs
    Legs are usually easy. From this pic, you can see that the bones don't line up with the polygons well.
    The solution? Just rotate the bones. Its that easy.

    The length is just fine, so no need to do any major mesh editing. This however, may not be the case for all models, and will usually need mesh editing like in Part 1a.
    Part 1c:Torso and Hips
    The torso is pretty much perfect for this model. Just make sure the BustN bone is in near the center up the upper-chest/rib cage area. The WaistN bone should be the lower torso/abs.

    Make sure the hips are centered around the HipN bone. The legs should be lined up horizontally with the hip, and vertically with the butt cheek. Just picture where your leg joints are, and line them up accordingly.
    Part 1d:The Head
    The head is pretty easy... just make sure the HeadN bone is at the base of the head, and the NeckN bone is at the base of the neck.


    Part 2: Rigging Tips
    Here are some concepts that you should know for this section that I will not cover:
    -Basic use of the Skin tool
    -Selecting and Deselecting verts
    -Aligning the model to bones properly
    -Again, basic use of 3ds Max
    You can find these concepts in various tutorials in the Forums

    Notes on the Weight tool:
    Its pretty simple to use. When something is rigged to a weight of 1, that means that it is influenced fully by that bone. 3ds Max uses decimals, but they can be converted to percents. So 1 means it is 100% influenced by that bone, 0.50 means it is 50% influenced by that bone, etc.

    When weighing, the polygons or verts may change color. Red means it is 100% influenced by the selected bone, and Blue means it is 10% or lower. 50% is usually a Yellow color.

    Part 2a:Getting Started
    Alright, to start rigging, I usually rig the BustN, WaistN, and HipN first.
    1. Use the Skin modifier on all the polygons, add the bones, then open the Weight tool. Select all the verts.
    2. Weigh the verts 100% to the BustN
    3. Deselect the verts above the BustN bone, and rig the rest to the WaistN
    4. Deselect the verts above the WaistN bone, and rig the rest to the HipN bone:

    This should hopefully prevent you from having any stray verts. I will later go in and show you how to tweak up those areas so they bend more smoothly.

    Part 2b:Arms
    Start by selecting the verts from the collar-bone area to the fingers, and weigh it to the ShoulderN bone. Try to avoid rigging any verts around the Pectoral area.

    Then, deselect the verts on the chest and back, and only rig the rest of the arm to the ShoulderJ bone.
    Then rig the verts about halfway down the shoulder area, near the elbow to the ArmJ bone.
    Finally, rig the Hand to the HandN bone

    Now time to make some tweaks. First, turn on AutoKey at the bottom and move the bar to any frame. Then, rotate the ShoulderN bone.

    See how it stretches? Select the verts being stretched, and click the + button or the Blend button on the Weight Tool to try to smooth it out. It just takes experimenting with the tools and weights to master it.

    Then rotate the ShoulderJ bone. It should have a nice, smooth, round rotation to it like a natural bone movement. My rig didnt need any tweaking.


    Now for the ArmJ. It is such an easy part to rig, yet I see so many people screw up on it.

    First, bend the arm and hide and polygons around it. See how the elbow looks very flat? Not good.

    Select the flat verts, and rig them to the ShouderJ bone, so its not as flat.

    I'm not done yet. It is still flat and unnatural.

    Select the verts on the edge of the elbow, select he ArmJ bone in the Weight Table,, and hit the blend tool a few times until it looks better.


    Voila! The elbow looks better.

    Now, rotate the hand bone.
    See how it goes through the sleeve and armor? that is called Clipping. Thats a no-no. Just fix it by selecting the problematic verts, and rig them to the HandN bone.

    Time for the horrible, feared, fingers... actually they're really easy. You just gotta line up the verts properly, and it'll work.

    First select the verts of one finger, and rig them to the 1stNa bone.
    Then, select the verts above the 1stNb bone, and rig them to the 1stNb bone.

    Then rotate them. See how the joint is kinda flat? Use the same method as the ArmJ bone to smooth it out.
    Do the same for the 1stNb bone if needed.

    Just do the same for the rest of the fingers. The thumb is also rigged the same, its just sideways.


    Other parts coming soon!
    « Last Edit: June 07, 2012, 10:08:09 AM by Nanobuds » Logged

    Boygos
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    « Reply #1 on: April 23, 2012, 05:09:50 PM »


    Looks good so far! Alternatively, you can press F3 to view wireframe.
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    Kamina
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    « Reply #2 on: April 23, 2012, 09:00:21 PM »


    This will be very useful for people who want to get into importing, especially because it looks like this guide will be more detailed then other importing guides.
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    Nanobuds
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    « Reply #3 on: April 23, 2012, 09:30:01 PM »


    I plan to go deeper into different techniques for rigging, as well as ways to just overall make rigging easier.
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    FallenKing
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    « Reply #4 on: April 23, 2012, 11:25:58 PM »


    Just finished reading everything, and I gotta say, this really helps. I never used the wireframe view, and I never really thought about lining up the bones like that. That'd probably explain why I could never perfectly blend even the simplest areas like the elbow and knee-caps. lol

    So for the fingers, the finger bones generally go half-way up the fingers? Oh, and the lower finger-bones line up with the knuckles, right? I'm thinking about borrowing another model's hands to properly rig Phoenix Wright's hands/fingers. lol

    I'm looking forward to the next part of this guide.
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    Nanobuds
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    « Reply #5 on: April 24, 2012, 05:50:49 AM »


    yeah, the 2nd finger joints go about midway in the fingers, make sure you group enough verts around the joints
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    Ninka_kiwi
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    « Reply #6 on: April 24, 2012, 01:55:21 PM »


    This may seem stupid for me to ask, but we are now able to change the boneset of a model slightly?

    For instance, I am rigging meta ridley over charizard right now and charizard as very wide seperation between his leg bones, So I coulde just move the leg bones to ridleys legs?
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    Nanobuds
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    « Reply #7 on: April 24, 2012, 02:36:59 PM »


    This may seem stupid for me to ask, but we are now able to change the boneset of a model slightly?

    For instance, I am rigging meta ridley over charizard right now and charizard as very wide seperation between his leg bones, So I coulde just move the leg bones to ridleys legs?
    Heres what I would do.

    In BrawlBox, delete all the leg bones. Then, make a new bone branching off the HipN bone for each leg, naming it something that the animations won't affect. Then, branch off bones from that new bone you made, and re-construct the original bone tree...

    It's hard to explain... but it's what I'm doing for Mewtwo's tail.

    PM Beyond about it... he did it for Pac Man.
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    « Reply #8 on: April 24, 2012, 03:45:36 PM »


    Ah nice! Happy Face ill be waiting until it gets done
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    « Reply #9 on: April 24, 2012, 03:51:49 PM »




    Part 5: Special Effects for your models


    How did I not notice this! I'll definitely be using this part. (I know most of the other parts to rigging fairly well..)
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    « Reply #10 on: April 25, 2012, 02:38:47 PM »


    How did I not notice this! I'll definitely be using this part. (I know most of the other parts to rigging fairly well..)

    Me too ...
    I want the shiny texture ... Thanks, cause i'm a noob with riggin, this is helpfull
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    Nanobuds
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    « Reply #11 on: April 25, 2012, 06:38:16 PM »


    Me too ...
    I want the shiny texture ... Thanks, cause i'm a noob with riggin, this is helpfull
    I will cover how to do that. I plan to finish most of the tutorial this weekend
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    « Reply #12 on: April 29, 2012, 08:10:37 PM »


    How should I have the shoulders lined up? I had to really stretch out Evil Ryu's shoulders to match Ganondorf's long arms, so I ended up with this:



    and here's what I have after I finished blending:



    Is this a problem with aligning the model with the skeleton, or is it because I blended it incorrectly? Is it both?
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    « Reply #13 on: April 29, 2012, 09:14:12 PM »


    make the shoulders a bit wider... also try blending the stretched verts to the BustN
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    « Reply #14 on: May 14, 2012, 10:33:35 PM »


    Do you plan on updating this eventually? I would definitely appreciate some more rigging guidelines, especially for shoulders. I also usually have problems rigging legs (not the knees), especially when you have clothing or some sort of material covering up a portion of the leg, and you need to rig parts of the clothing to move with the leg.
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