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'Scaled to Epic skeleton' vs 'Rigged to Epic skeleton'

Hey everybody

I am currently creating character models that are rigged to the Epic skeleton. As I understood it, this meant that all bones have the same name and structure (basically the conditions to use the same skeleton) and that every bone is placed in the same place on the body in the same way the bones from the Epic skeleton are placed on the Mannequin mesh.

This requirement seems pretty straightforward, but when I look at skeletal meshes on the Marketplace (as well as the submission guidelines), the description always mentions ‘scaled to Epic skeleton’ as well. Is this any different from being rigged to the Epic skeleton, and if so, what does it mean exactly? Does the mesh have to be the same height in total, or do all proportions neet to be exact or something? Both of these seem unlikely to me because then all meshes on the marketplace would have very similar bodies.

So far, my workflow has always been to import the Mannequin into my 3D modeling software, scale it to match the height of the character i created and then proceed to move the bones to their appropriate location on the mesh. Is this in any way destructive? All animations i make this way seem to be working as intended in engine.

The submission guidelines (Epic Games Technical Support & Customer Service | Epic Games) also mention “Skeleton must not be scaled” for character submissions (section 8). Is this the same thing, or what exactly do they mean by that (scaled in engine, in the modeling software, in animations, …)?

Thanks in advance!
JonVD

Confusion on this, among other things, is why I’ve yet to create characters for the marketplace.

Based on what I have seen from characters on the Marketplace, your current workflow should be suitable. Plus, if it is rigged to the Epic skeleton, through retargeting, it can be scaled to whatever size is needed. I’m thinking when they say “scaled to Epic skeleton”, they mean it needs to be in the same units as the Epic skeleton, like using the cm unit standard. I know some programs have different scaling, like using mm units or whatever.

‘Scaled to Epic skeleton’ means that it is proportional to the mannequin and applies to any mesh asset. If its a gun, if fits in the mannequin’s hand. If its a door, the mannequin can walk through it. If its a dwarf character, it should come up to the mannequin’s waste. etc. Basically, its telling you to use cm. Things such as the sun, planets, etc. could not be practically done like this and as such will not have the ‘Scaled to Epic skeleton’ descriptor.

‘Rigged to Epic Skeleton’ means you use the same joint hierarchy, with the same names, and same orientation relative to the part of the character weighted to it. Skeleton Assets | Unreal Engine Documentation

You should never scale bones ever for any reason. In addition to being sloppy workflow in general, UE4 does not support bone scaling in animation. Any bone given a scale other than 1.0 (100%) will cause problems in engine.

I think the fact that Epic does a sh*t job enforcing these standards is the source of confusion. The actual terminology is pretty plain.

2 Likes

100% This. he knows.

Big thanks to everybody for responding! This has made things a lot more clear

Yeah thanks bro~ :grinning: