What's the best way to bind a new character to an existing skeleton

Hi there,

the main character of our game is done now and I try to get him in Unreal,…however this seems more of a problem than I thought in the beginning.


I’ve exported the mannequin from Unreal and imported it in Maya 2015, binded the character to the rig and exported it to test it(I didn’t go into advanced skinning so far since the import is not working at all at the moment).

At import I select the existing skeleton from the project (which is exactly the same which I used for the character in Maya), however during import I get an error message because of and change in the hierarchy (or something like that)…if I ignorre it and press “Yes all”, the import continues and in persona the skeleton seems to be imported correctly…however if you look on all the animation you will see that something went wrong really bad. (not only the different up direction Maya uses)


How do you bring your new characters into the engine and bind them to existing skeletons shared by other characters? Do you used the “Animation and Rigging Tool for Maya” for that? I have it installed but didn’t use it because I didn’t need a new rig (actually I really want to avoid a new rig since I’m not keen to retarget over 500 animations).

…and how do you handle the ik Bones in the rig during skinning? Do you assign any skinweights to them?

Thanks in advance

facepalm! Y-up in maya :smiley:
Maybe try using Z axis up

Already did 2 hours ago…makes no different to the rig. It looks like force-fed with dynamite no matter what is the up axis

Did you just make Z axis up in maya and rotated the root bone so that the character is not sleeping in Y axis? That is not what I mean.
You might wanna re-rig mate. I know it is a pain, but as far as I know and from my experience, this method does not work because the bone orientations are still Y-up and the epic’s skeleton is made for Z-up.

Ok, I fixed it…I write it down since I hope it helps someone in future… By accident there was a group selected at export (Male_Char…) which caused the hierarchy error at import…however the thing that made the rig look like a blown up poodle was that the rootbone had some skinweights on it. I’m used to have the rootbone at the pelvis (with weights), however this is different on the epic skeleton

If facial animation should be done my morph targets, should I leave the eyes, upperteeth and jaw as seperate parts in the fbx or can I simple merge all parts of the character(body, eyes, upperteeth and jaw) to one solid mesh?

It’s the first time I skin to a rig which will have blendshapes later, so I’m not sure what would be the best way to proceed.