I wonder how do you guys handle this.
I’ve made some armor models (skinned skeletal meshes) and now I want to implement females into my game. The only idea for now is to create separate version of each armor model and switch between “male” and “female” (depending on player’s/NPC’s gender) version when putting up an armor from an inventory. Is there a better way than creating 2 versions of every armor piece?
… Maybe some extra bones in character rig placed in strategical places, that will scale up/down on an armor depending on wearer’s gender?
Not really. Games like oblivion used to have one skeleton for both males and females, but that doesn’t work well. You end up with either effeminate guys(narrow shoulders) or overly muscular women(very wide shoulders) AND you’ll still need different costumes for both genders. Oblivion (and later some fallout titles) had that amusing quirk where clothes you picked up magically transform into different pieces of equipment depending on the character’s gender. Meaning it looks like pants on a guy, BUT transforms into skirt for a girl.
It IS possible to implement system that will be able to transfer equippable clothes between genders, but results will be worse than with different meshes, and it’ll take some serious R&D.
Also, for fun factor, you could use try using same armor mesh for both genders. it will require armor to be composed of static meshes, not skinned meshes, but could look interesting, if armor is composed from pieces like pauldrons/shoulder guards, etc.