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I need your opinion about them dancin' dozers!

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johnhattan

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Got motivated today and decided to work on the animation a bit more. With quite a bit of tweaking, I was able to get Cinema 4D (which I just finished writing an extensive review, so watch for it) and Emotion 3D to play nicely. Emotion 3D's 3DS-importer is horribly broken, so I stuck with the .X importer. It works a bit, but it can't deal with textures, only solid colors. This wasn't much of a problem, as the only "necessary" textures were on the dozer's eyes. I rebuilt the dozer's eyes out of three spheres (white, blue, and black), and did a little work with boolean operators and cylinders and was finally able to make a reasonable-looking eye without textures. I also made the model a tad simpler, for one getting rid of the translucent windows, which would've been a pain to animate over a background.

I then had to fiddle with C4D, as it makes the positions of objects by default relative to the object. Like if you create a cube, the origin of the cube will be in the center of the cube. The 3DS model I had, though, had all objects' origins at an absolute point 0,0,0. It took me a bit to realize this was what was happening. When I exported my dozer, you wouldn't see his newly-created eyes. Turns out the eyes were there, but they were being moved to point 0,0,0, which was in the center of the dozer itself. Once I figured out that's what was happening, it was an easy task to move the objects' origins to the same spot.

It took quite a bit more fiddling than that, but I did get the dozer animating the way I want.




Which brings me to the animation itself. I need your opinion. At the following link is the animation resulting from my aforementioned struggle with the tools. One thing I can do is make a thick black "outer border" on the object. I rather like it, as it reminds me a bit of the kind of effect you see in animation nowadays (like in the Powerpuff Girls or that Clone Wars series).


Take a look at the animation on the following page and tell me (1) what you think of the dozer (color, design, etc) and (2) which animation you prefer (with or without border)

http://members.gamedev.net/johnhattan/diary/dozerdancetest.html

Thanks in advance for your opinion.
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11 Comments


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1. Love the dozer look! Very cartoonish!
2. I think the border detracts from the animation, so the first animated model looks best to me.

Good work!

-- Eric 'Wackatronic' Tomlinson

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1. Love the dozer, though changing the windows' colour away from yellow might be better.
2. The one without the border looks better on that page, but the border might be necessary for different backgrounds ('specially if the background isn't a uniform colour).


C.

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1. I'm totally biased. Good work on the eyes. You can't even tell from the animation that they are no longer textured. Nice animation.

2. I like the black border but it's hard to know what it will look like given that it's not shown in the intended environment.

3. Your journal is, by far, one of the best reads!

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1. I really like the dozer. It's really cool how he has a little hop to him and the pipe dances. If I would add anything, I would make the treads spin. It just looks a little weird to me without them moving, but then again he is walking so who needs em?
2. I think that you should only use the black outline if you reduce the colors a lot so that it looks more cartoony, and not like a 3d model with a black outline.



Hope that helps.

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1) dozer++! I want the same one in my garden! 'ts quite teh fun :)
2) I, like a bunch of others, prefer the one without a black border. Maybe a slightly thiner border should be better. Or maybe you should try to make it more cartoonish if you want to add this big border. The other is nice (be aware than it can become an internet wide classic. You'll find it on web pages that are "under heavy contruction" soon... [wink])

Regards,

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I like the look of it, but I didn't much care for the black border, at least against that background. Like someone else said, though, it may suit a different background better.

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