Friday, June 27, 2014

Friday, it's full of animation

It's Friday and time for a party!

Actually this friday is to be spent on animation improvements among other things. The animation above was made just for fun. If you know the movie reference of those dance moves, you're alright! Read on...

Animating the dance moves in Blender

One of the interesting problems has been getting the animations to look good in isometric view. It requires a lot of exaggeration on already exaggerated movements. For example, a cautious and slow walk cycle looks alright in Blender when I'm animating it, but when it's thrown over to Unity and set to move, the character looks like a 90 year old man with severe hip and back problems:

This is a link to a 4.9mb animated .gif

A big part of the problem is the sliding feet issue. Because of the way our character(s) is set up, we currently cannot use root motion on the rig; the rig and character mesh are parented inside an empty gameobject which holds all the controller related stuff, rigidbody, colliders and the rest of the components. The rig only contains animation event related scripts.

Obviously, a new improved walk cycle needs to happen and it's on my todo list for today. Root motion will probably be applied too at a later stage since it would certainly make things smoother.

The previous running animation was quite bland so I've improved it a bit:

I think it's a lot more lively now and has some weight to it, but there's still room for improvement (as always!). I've also added running left and right variations to it. I'm planning to add at least 5 more animation states to the player character for our next build.

Oh, and a new Blender version is out today: Blender 2.71, with some nice new features! The new animation interpolation types look very interesting.


Btw, there's going to be a blog post about enemy AI behavior and all that cool jazz later this week, so stay tuned and thanks for reading!