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Animated NVIDIA Flex soft body rig

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    #31
    Hi, I had similar issues when I moved a character too fast or through a wall. I found that using larger rigid bodies like the “UE4 FleX rig 2” sample helped. Unfortunately, this would only be useful for rigging and it would lose most of its soft body properties. It also didn’t interact well with cloth and liquid (tends to pass through).

    The particle size was also an issue because the size has to be fixed for all interactions (character, clothing, water). It would be cool if it supported variable particle sizes but I guess it wouldn't work as well on the GPU. I was more interested in testing a full character so I used large particles. As you mentioned, this wouldn’t work well for small details like hands or the face.

    Because of this I thought I’d try another approach in code. In the “FleX animated rigid bodies” samples I created the equivalent to an active ragdoll. It only needs particles on the mesh verts and is hollow so I can use smaller particles and keep detailed areas like hands. I was also thinking of using a smaller mesh for the particles (overlap). Cloth and liquid should also work (haven’t tried it yet). It should be possible to stitch objects together with springs e.g belly fat soft body, could bounce off ground from a fall. The main downside is that it doesn’t use the integrated branch so I lose most of the features. Its also very difficult to control (can pin areas but it could cause similar movement issues like attach to rigid). It might be interesting for basic characters like snakes.

    Overall I think the first method mentioned in the tutorial would probably only be useful something like cutscenes with slow movements. It would be really cool if the integrated branch included FleX characters one day. It's a shame that it has these amazing water, softbody and cloth features but you can’t have a character with two way interaction. I doubt it will be added however, as FleX is really only supposed to be used for secondary effects. I’m probably going to be working on some VR projects so I won’t be using FleX for a while.

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      #32
      Originally posted by DivideByZero View Post
      It looks like the soft bodies require a special material. I just duplicated flexBaconMat and changed the texture.
      In the datails pane of the material, "Usage" part, you need to select "Use with flex meshes".

      You probably know that by now, but maybe someone has that problem again.

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        #33
        I planned to create a destructible steel wall in unreal using flex. The goal was to be able to shoot the wall with a cannon and then see the wall deform, with several shots at the same point it should open a hole. I thought it would be easy to create the wall and convert it into cloth with tearing. The problem is that no mather what I do, the cloth never gets stiff like metal. And cloth is the only one with tearing. Anyone have any idea what I could do?

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          #34
          Looks like stiffness parameter are not working on cloth.

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            #35
            Creating a destructible steel wall with cloth sounds interesting. I’ve seen examples using plastic deformations on rigid bodies e.g metal barrel hits the grounds and it dents (maybe not supported in UE4?). I haven’t seen an example that would tear like cloth after a few hits. I think the stiffness setting might be the spring strength or stretchiness of the cloth. It might work if you could add shape constraints to the cloth (would probably require code).

            I saw this awhile ago and thought it was really cool. I hope it’s included in a future version of Flex.


            I was also testing motors for soft bodies in Unity recently. I’ll probably try it in UE4 at some point if I get the bone rotations working.
            Last edited by DivideByZero; 12-23-2016, 12:47 AM.

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              #36
              good work!

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                #37
                That looks great. The first video is what I wanted, just without the elasticity. You have some tutorial about creating that motors?

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                  #38
                  This video at 0:43 does what I was trying:

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                    #39
                    Just read this in FLEX documentation: "The Flex UE4 integration does not currently expose all of the features in the Flex SDK, such as smoke simulation, or plastic deformation of rigid bodies. These features will be added in a future release."
                    Looks like we need to wait.

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                      #40
                      why is lie?? i dont see flex in ue4 ??????

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                        #41
                        Originally posted by marineuac View Post
                        why is lie?? i dont see flex in ue4 ??????
                        It's not in the binary release. You have to either pull one of the versions from here https://github.com/NvPhysX/UnrealEngine and build the source, or compile it into your own source version of the engine source.

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                          #42
                          Originally posted by marineuac View Post
                          why is lie?? i dont see flex in ue4 ??????
                          It's no lie. Do a bit of searching or wait for someone to come along and do it for you. Awww, okay... I'll break down and do it myself:

                          https://developer.nvidia.com/nvidia-gameworks-and-ue4
                          https://www.unrealengine.com/ue4-on-github
                          https://github.com/NvPhysX/UnrealEngine

                          Generally when peeps can't find this stuff, they also aren't prepared to compile it. So be sure and read up. Details on that are around the forums and such, several times over.

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                            #43
                            Originally posted by Rathren View Post
                            I did as you said it works like a charm
                            Here an fast viedo of cause it looks goofy since there is only Pelvis and thight.


                            Does someone else lose material on the flex object when you start playing?
                            yes, and seems you have to enable flex meshes in the material
                            Click image for larger version

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                              #44
                              Originally posted by DivideByZero View Post

                              Bone / animation tutorial.

                              [ATTACH=CONFIG]77058[/ATTACH]
                              When playing back animations it should be setup like the image above.

                              [ATTACH=CONFIG]77057[/ATTACH]
                              I was just trying a skinny character. It looks like stretched spheres work better. You should also be able to use a ragdoll but I couldn't get it to work.

                              Hey there, "how do you keep the end points of the flexible hose fixed? (this video of yours made me ask)

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                                #45
                                In this case the entire character (including the hose) is a single soft body mesh. The animated skeleton doesn’t need a mesh and just has rigid bodies attached as seen in Attachment 77057. The soft body is bound to the rigid bodies, any parts not attached will bounce e.g hose.

                                I was mainly trying to see if it could be useful for skinning characters. Normally I’d have to manually create lots of helper bones for forearm twists, shoulders etc and use a complicated rig for animation. I thought that if I used a soft body then I should only need a basic skeleton and the particles should keep their volume while also giving secondary motion. I figured the effect might be similar to clay animation e.g Wallace and Gromit. Unfortunately it doesn’t interact well with other particles like clothing.

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