questions about animations rigging and so on

something I have been putting off, manly because it looks quite hard and very time consuming, i am starting to task of rigging and animations, I am looking at a rigging a guy like this (see below), not this particular one that is still going through a few ideas but it is close, this is from substance printer sample files, he will look something along the lines of it, a little shorter and more heavily built then the UE4 guy, I am using blender to rig and I imported the guy in, but it’s messy very allover the place, I can sort out that somewhat but the bone names are a issue

1, could a rig a UE4 skeleton to match the is guy, I want to use Ue4 animations to would cut down my time 10 fold as I don’t know anything about crating animations
2, would it even work given the different shape of the 2 meshes

3, are there animation programs

the movement of the guy isn’t that much all 3rd person up high

  • run/walk so on
  • jump/land
  • shoot gun one hand
  • hold object in other
  • reach behind his back
  • pickup/drop
  • die/fall
  • and maybe some more depending on the level design and how I go about it

the other option is I pay someone to rig and animate, they will do a far better job then I ever would but I have no idea what it would cost me, but then again all I could offer them is the credit at the final product


The key to all animations is your skeleton asset. You should be able to use the engine’s retargeting tools to use most basic animations on your model. There are some nice tutorials on the epic youtube channel that go over its use.

Well in MIXAMO My commander animates all perfectly fine eyes stay fixed in his head during walking
and also has the correct body shape with the animation.

Importing him into Unreal Engine and his anim is perfectly fine except he has NO ROOT Bone. (red line). So The animations do play fine in Unreal Engine in the preview window.

BUT mixamo adds in no root bone when rigging which means, I gotta go into blender to add in the missing root bone, which as soon as I load the rig up into blender, and add the missing root bone
in then re-export it back out of Blender and load it up into Unreal Engine, then import the animation (which you also have to add the root bone to) a trip through blender’s buggy FBX pipeline and hes likely to turn out all twisted and distorted mesh if I try to retarget him with the epic rig because my commander dosen’t have all the Twist Bones which the Epic Rig has. So the targeting is not
going to work very well.

I don’t know how to get my commander to use the epic rig instead of using his own rig because my commander is missing the twist bones for the retargeting, as the engine wants to merge bones and when trying to assign his mesh to the epic skeleton, and when you do crash goes the engine…

This post may not help at all, but I keep seeing these sort of threads pop up, a general advice for you guys is don’t take shortcuts, re-targeting or using pre-made rigs etc… the sooner you start working the right way the better it would be for your practice or whatever you are producing either for now or for the future.

So if you don’t know how to rig, start learning or get a partner before touching a game, because chances are if you are serious for game production the quality of the end product would be pretty much below average or generic and will be lost in the ocean of below average and generic games out there. If you are doing it for practice then it doesn’t help either, it’s like trying to write a composition without first learning the alphabet.

Same with animation, don’t use UE assets for your product because that would make it look like any other UE tutorial or example file which is used by a thousand other people out there. If you are doing it for practice, then it would do you good to either learn the basics and start practising or find a partner animator for your team, even if you are not an animator.

Unless you are a programmer and wish to put a few quick assets together to rough out the game technicalities you are working on by the time an artist/animator takes over. But the nature of your post does not tell me that this is so.

Oh and yes forget Mixamo rigs if you are remotely serious about your game.

Edit: just read your last line "the other option is I pay someone to rig and animate, they will do a far better job then I ever would but I have no idea what it would cost me, but then again all I could offer them is the credit at the final product "

Ok then I guess that clarifies things a bit, yea hopefully you’d find someone to help you, but as they say the more you know about the craft the better judge you would be on the partner you choose to work with you.

thanks to all for the really. I am going to look at Maximo, free to use and pay once you are finished from what I can tell anyway, buy the looks of it, it get very bad reviews on steam? and some people said they cant add there own mesh?

William K@ I have been playing around with the “auto rigs” in blender, and frankly I just don’t understand what going on, probably the fist time in the whole process of " how to build a game " that I have just don’t understand things, the rig part, bones and how they interact with the mesh I understand but blender had all theses other circles and boxes that may on sense what they do and why they are needed, these thing are part of the research process and learning how to do thing I understand that, once I have the animations I know what to do with them in UE4. you are right in saying about the rigs, all I found is “do this in blender” but you have to download this script to fix this issue, then change this to fix this issue, at the end off all of it, all I got was a bunch of duplicate bones and I cant seen to get rid off and a bunch off errors that I have to try and research to fix then learn how to fix, messy to say the lest

again the money thing comes up, what I have seen hear and other places is people are very reluctant say who much thing cost to do, whether people just know or there unwilling ness to say for far of people trying to call them out of over charging I don’t know, I look at it like this, zbrush cost me $1000 substance printer cost me about $200, the 2 programs i haven’t had any trouble leaning so far, it’s all about the technic of it, so what i spend more doing something I enjoy, like i said to my misses is, a last I’m no into drugs, or onto cars LOL

so I how much would one spend on a animator?

Edit @ tried fuse and buy the looks, it is hard to import a mesh in it has to have the same UV layout as there premade models, doesn’t really fit with my look or am I missing something?
it is only moment animations that I am after, one of the reason what I am going with a design like the guy above

You can add your own mesh to mixamo as long as its a humanoid mesh and hasn’t got heaps of layers of clothing on it so the Mixamo targeting rigger can read it where you need to place the targets… I rigged up my commander with Mixamo online rigger and my commander was a Blender Rig. He turned out just fine. I just exported out only his mesh and put it through Mixamo and he was rigged. Then i had to also load him back into blender, replace the missing root bone in all his animations so the Anim BP can beable to use his animations. As long as I kept him out of object mode when fixing his bones things went fine with him and I avoided setting off the dreaded rigging bug that’s in blender which messes up the rigs…

Its best to upload your mesh without the bones so mixamo can fully rig otherwise you will have to mess around with the bones to remap them which I don’t want to mess around with. so I choose the 65 option. I think they only support Humanoid rigs with their online rigger. I don’t see any insect or animal or vehicle rigs support yet on unreal engine as they only have the humanoid rig for their retargeting, so I don’t know how to rig up a jeep or an animal for unreal engine yet. I think Unreal Engine could avoid alot of hassel if they had a rigger built inside the engine itself that supported all kinds of different rigs, not just humanoid ones so you could build your rigs in the engine so there’s no loss of data as you get sometimes when dealing with pipelines from one software program
to another, when both programs don’t have the same pipeline code, so Epic should really listen up and pay attention here.