Blender APEX workaround possibly?

Hi folks,

So yesterday I managed to get my custom character to work in UE4, and something came to mind. I wanted to add physics to the character’s hair, specifically her ponytail, and started looking around. Almost everyone suggested Nvidia APEX, however, upon doing further investigation into what APEX is, I found out that there is no supported plugin for Blender to export APEX data to ue4.

My question now is, is there any other workaround to get physics simulations into UE4 from blender? I did use the “Spring Controller” initially in the Animation blueprint, and although it looks cool, it is too “floaty”. It would be great if I can somehow simulate hair physics on my character.

Is there maybe some sort of physics system I can use within UE4 that I’m not aware of possibly, or is Nvidia APEX the only route one can go if you want to add physics simulations to characters?

Here is a preview of the character as is right now:

Hi Xelus,

You can setup in your Blueprint to simulate below any selected bones. This can be a way to use the bones to simulate physics for the pony tail, pending you have multiple bones that make up the pony tail.

We have an example of this setup on a running characters leg and torso in Content Examples > Physical Animation Map.

You can see more information about the setup in this documentation page: Content Examples Sample Project for Unreal Engine | Unreal Engine 5.1 Documentation

If you choose to load up the project and map you can adjust the slider to see how different values affect the simulation.

4.8 I think did have a known issue with the physics assets not reacting correctly, but I know this has been resolved in 4.9 for sure. For some context to this issue, the physics simulation did not respect how the character would move. For instance, If you run forward the simulated bones would not be pulled along like it were flowing behind. The simulated bones would simulate physics, but not based on character movement, per se.

I hope this helps.


Hi Tim,

Great, thanks for the reply, I’ll look into the PhysicalAnimation map. At the moment, all I would really like for the ponytail to do, is to actually simulate physics, not necessarily cloth or accurate hair physics, just something to add motion to the static hair, and physics was the first thing that came to mind for it.

If it is any help, here is a quick video and a screenshot of what I currently have for the character. If I can get the ponytail to have some sort of physics/movement applied to it, it will already be a big plus for me.