Modern, indie-friendly, full featured character creation pipeline - is it a utopia?

This. They announced that a while back, browsing their website yields not very promising results.

About Daz3D, there is something I cannot figure out: what’s the cost? Let’s suppose I exported free naked Genesis model as fbx+textures, then created my own clothes and animations with other software. If I want to use it in my Unreal project, should I pay something? How much?

Talking to them on the phone it appears if you use one of their models in any form where the end user can get the model data you need a license. This holds true for any artist whose assets you use

For example you us Genesis 3 (daz original) and say hair (made by Acme) to create a character. You will use this character in three projects
1. A 3d Tomb raider clone: For this you will need to buy the game dev license for both Daz Original and Acme
2. An animated film: Since the end user can not get the modeling data you do not need a license
3. A digital novel that uses pre rendered 2d images of the character again since the end user will not be able to get the model data no license needed

So right now the question is “Can the end user access the model data?” if the answer is yes you need a license otherwise you do not

UPDATE wanted to get prices
Daz indie license is 2500 but goes on sale a lot
Other artist charge between 500 and 2500

>Daz indie license is 2500 but goes on sale a lot

Found it on their page. Their page says it’s $500

Also, it’s not clear if it’s 500 per model, or per game or per seat or per what?

Sorry you are right 500 for indie I quoted the big studio price (
That should be for all daz models and add ons made by

daz. As for the sales I believe FrankieV above says in one of his videos he got it for 100. They just had a 3 day black Friday sale, I did not see it on sale then, not sure if they will have something later


Daz3d is a company that sells art supplies where you are licensed in hand as to any content you download via their download manager the same way you can download assets via Epic’s launcher and can be used anyway one sees fit with out the need to pay any additional fees with the exception, and as mentioned, the asset data needs to be available, as in a video game, at the “time of distribution” which requires a “one time” license extension.

The license fee scales as to expected annual sales.

$2500 for over $100,000
$500 for under $100,000

However if you purchase a Platinum account the Daz Original license changes to

$1750.00 for over $100,000
$350.00 of under $100,000

and should be noted that the under $100,000 has gone on sale for $100.00 (one hundred) from time to time.

If you use Daz Studio to render out 2d elements for your game then you are licensed in hand.

I suspect that Daz3d is using the licensing fee to gauge interest as to Daz3d products being used in a video game due to the discounting of the license fees and that Morph3D is a flier to get an keep their foot into the digital people marketplace.

It should also be noted that the Poser format is very popular and there is tones of free and usable assets with in the Creative Commons.

Sorry to bug you again but when you said this I was like “dang I forgot about poser and it has built in game optimizations in it” Anyway I see Poser pro 11 is on sale for 175. I played witht he software very lightly and was wondering if you messed with it and if so would you recommend it?

I know you can use some Daz stuff in poser but not sure how well it animates and renders when compared to iclone or daz

I’m not familiar enough with Poser but the thing about DCC is the ability to move assets from app A to app B with little or no loss to design fidelity so as long as app A plays by the rules of the FBX protocol then it would be a edit solution worth looking into.

So if an app has a usable tool set then the first step is to see if it does have a suitable DCC export ability.

The need for optimization though should be the responsibility of the target application, in this case the Unreal 4 closed edit environment, and with Auto LOD for static mesh in 4.14 it can be assumed that Auto skeletal mesh LOD should be made available in a future release. In general a closed edit environment is well suited for controlling the kind of outputs needed as to asset fidelity and performance so what ever app B can do as far as a procedural process could and should be added to the feature request list and preformed in UE4.

Personal opinion wise though I would not feel comfortable recommending Poser as part of a development pipeline due to the lack of community support or company driven promotion and taking into consideration the power of DS alone to do other things with it, that does not cost a cent as far as start up costs goes, at $175 dollars it seems to me to be a case of buying bottle water.

I seen some claim poser gone down hill over the years. I seen the 175 price tag and thought “buy the time I by ethnic pack, decimator and some morph packs for Daz I would have spent 175.”

Do you use decimator for your daz models or are the tools in UE 4 good enough? Also what ethnic pack if any are you using? I found the one on Daz but its pretty old and says daz4.9 and genesis.

Me and my friend @berguina we played with Daz a little bit and it looks pretty neat compared to Make Human/Mixamo/Autodesk Character generator. Base model from Daz, dressed in Marvelous, skinned clothes in Maya LT. Daz textures are not PBR and there is no normals only bumpmaps, so we had to fight a little bit for materials, but it was not that difficult after all. Also, had no problem to retarget with default UE skeleton.

Well we are only on what I would call phase one of snagging the G3 framework so we can get our coders and content team working in the same channel/page of build it first and optimized last as to need so no we don’t use Decimator The main form though is only 32k tris or 16k poly and can decrease the count even more by hiding the parts of the body not needed and is excluded during the export process.

The starting point though is clothing to create body shape and being made in Zbrush using the GoZ bridge so the same process will probably be used for ethnic as our artists have the skills to make AAA so the only thing we might purchase off the shelf is hair.

Overall though it pays to wait as more than once problems were fixed engine side as well version 4.14 is the first “game” engine I’ve seen able to parse a full fidelity model from DS so I think things are going to get a bit more interesting in the same way Vis usage seems to come out of no where.

DS does use PBR but is called Iray Material. In 3ds Max it’s call Arch&Design.

How so you just use the base model and build up from their, other than hair of course. My sculpting skills are not the best so I was thinking of picking up a few of the ethnic characters. Was going to buy some of the other ones like Aiko 7 or Victory 7 but then thought “Why do that just buy the G3 body morph packs and make my own”

I was thinking about using marvelous designer for clothing. My skills in the substance tools far exceed my sculpting ones. So figure using both of them, along with blender I can make any outfit I would need

Thanks for the help

Hello again

I took FrankieV advice and stayed with Daz. For anyone else thinking of this I highly recommend you join the platinum club. At 24 a quarter or 70 a year the discounts it provides can not be beat.

Hey, FrankieV, thank you for all the useful videos on your channel.

I have a suggestion. It would be great if you could team up with some skilled digital course author(s) & narrator(s) and create full series of streamlined videos for creating a UE4 game character from a DAZ G3 model, covering as much topics as required (animations, UE montages, IKs, facial animations, LODs, custom clothes, custom textures, optimization for multiple on-screen models as NPCs…). It seems, you already have videos for most of these topics, but they could benefit from some cleanup, organizing, streamlining.

You could publish the course on some platform, such as Pluralsight etc. and I would be the first one to buy it :slight_smile: You could even start a Kickstarter campaign; I’m sure you would get lots of backers from UE4 community. Or even you could throw a message to DAZ - maybe they could sponsor your video course for popularizing their products at Unreal community :slight_smile:

And if you want to be more friendly to indie developers, you could also show how to achieve the best results using free tools like Blender & Gimp (might have to team up with Blender & Gimp gurus to find out how to achieve the same results as you currently do in MotionBuilder, 3ds max and Photoshop).

omg hell yes i would buy that in a heartbeat :d

Well as you see I don’t do tutorials but broad overviews but now that the gap between DS and UE4 has been crossed I would expect a flood of tutorials in the near future.

If I was to do something like this and that I would probably go through the process of setting up an Actor for the purpose of using UE4 as a real time rendering solution and sell it over at Daz3D as they have a much deeper marketplace for such things.

Considering that in these few years since UE4 is open, there hasn’t been any complete course “From an idea to a fully rigged, efficient AAA-ready and fully animated game character” (or anything in these lines), I’m not optimistic about seeing something similar for Daz3D → UE4 soon…

Separate tutorials are not good enough for building hassle-free reliable pipeline. There is always a risk of getting into some “impedance mismatch” where you have to lose much time on trials and errors or redoing lots of animations or textures just because of some silly checkbox error a week ago.

A thing to keep in mind if you are about to use an unmodified DAZ figure is the skeleton is different from default UE4 skeleton, especially in regard to twist joints. Daz skeleton limbs has joints hierarchy like this:

Left Collar
Left Shoulder Bend
Left Shoulder Twist
Left Forearm Bend
Left Forearm Twist
Left Hand

While UE4 skeleton has separate twist joints like this:

upperarm_l upperarm_twist_01_l
lowerarm_l lowerarm_twist_01_l

with twist bones parented to the same bone as their respective bend bones. UE4 skeleton allows to use Two Bone IK as twist bones does not add levels of hierarchy while you won’t be able to use it with DAZ skeleton.

I am using a Genesis 3 figure for learning UE4 myself but have converted the skeleton to resemble UE4 hierarchy in an external application to be on a safe side down the road. Not something like direct import of a figure from Daz Studio to UE4 (and that spiky weights problem was initial reason though).

Another thing to mention is Daz Studio has Texture Atlas tool that is hidden from default UI layout but you can find it using Window->Workspace->Customize… (or just press F3) - there is Texture Atlas action. It might be helpful to reduce number of materials on the figure but it messes with UV so you’ll have to adjust UV in an external application as well. I use Modo personally: move UV islands to respective texture space (some of them are shifted to the right after making the texture atlas) and then assign the same material to whole body and delete unneeded materials. So I end up with just two materials for a character without clothes - body and eyelashes. Default Genesis 3 figure has 16 materials for the body so you’ll save on draw calls reducing it to one (plus eyelashes that has to have separate material because of different blend mode).

did you tried ?

its free and easy to start. It has face morphs and smilar skeleton for ue4. You can fit clothes and have PBR skin.

And i dont know why i cant use that daz studio. It feels like you cant custumize it well.

Thanks, Sioda, for the hint about the twist bones - these are exactly the issues I was afraid of. They might mess up some more complex animations and blueprints. Twist bones and IKs usually are ignored in most of animation retargeting tutorials.

It would be great to have more information about the workarounds and also the texture atlas optimization using free tools (Blender).

About - it’s based on MakeHuman, although has some improvements (not sure if they are relevant for UE4, though). From some review:

Definitely worth trying out, but not sure if it wouldn’t have issues with UE4 IKs and twist bones and if pipeline in general would be smoother than with DAZ.

I have tried Modo some time ago and it was awesome - much more intuitive than Blender and I could use Modo without relearning all the shortcuts after a few weeks of not using it. But I’ve heard that their indie version has some serious flaws and unreasonable limitations.