Exporting Animations

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Contents

Overview

The Animation Editor is used to convert OpenCollada .DAE files into a format that Blue Mars can recognize. The purpose of this tutorial is to show you how to properly set up and export animations for use in Blue Mars. For this tutorial we will be using 3DS Max 2010.


First Steps



1) The first thing you will want to do is open the max scene that contains our rigged model ready for animating. This model can be found under Blue Mars City Developer Tools -> Template -> Avatar -> (Gender Of the Model you would like to use) -> Animation -> Body.

2) Select and open either the T-Pose model or the Idle posed model depending on where you would like your animation to start. Don't fret too much about which model to choose as all animations automatically blend in with whatever idle pose your Avatar is currently in.


Key Frames

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1) With your model loaded, notice the ruler like grid on the bottom of your 3ds Max scene, these are your keyframes. Select the 0 Keyframe and then on to the right, choose Auto Key.
2)What you will want to do now is to slightly move your avatar, and advance the keyframe forward after each time you do. The farther apart you space out the timing from the movement, the more guesswork Max will do of how you want the animation displayed. Clicking the Play icon and moving the timeline slider forward and back will give you an idea of what your completed animation will look like.
3) Once your animation is completed and your satisfied with the way things look, its time to export your scene to Blue Mars!


Schematic View

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1) First, go to Graph Editors > New Schematic View. This will bring up the schematic view and allow you to view all bipedals of your model. With the Schematic view open, select every single object within that window then Export > Export Selected. Save your animation as an OpenCollada .DAE file and the options for export box should now display.

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Unlike exporting cloth and other items, for animations you only need to check the Enable Export button under animations. If you would like to manually set the end time of your animation, check also the Sample animation button, and you can set the values for start and end time here. Be sure to save the animation under your "MyData" Directory within its own folder.

2) With your animation file now exported, it's time to bring it in to Blue Mars! Open your Animation Editor and browse for the .DAE animation we have just created, after selecting and loading the correct avatar click the create and play button and you should see your avatar performing the animation! Continue to work back and forth between previewing in Blue Mars and 3DS Max to make smooth realistic animations that everyone can enjoy.

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