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Mr_Ridd

3D Character Modfication

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Hey Taking a look at Dungeon Seige and other 3D rpg's, What is the best or most efficient way to modify a player character. Like change clothes, add armour, change weapons? Also bearing in mind that the animation has to flow. Is it better to cut the model up into pieces, or just add geometry as needed? Just another question, which is the best way to load all the clothes, armour? At startup or on the fly? Thanks

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I would cut the model. There is no need to have the sword or whatever part of the main character, you only need to store the object's location and facing vector and what the object is. It will make the modelling process easier because you only need to design each object in one generic pose and the program will align the object to the character when wielded. It also saves memory if more than one character wears or wields the same object.

Quote:

which is the best way to load all the clothes, armour? At startup or on the fly?


It depends what you mean by load. If you mean from the drive, then I think startup. If you mean when to assign the objects to the main character, then on the fly as needed I think (and have a few routines to update the character graphics when a change to the object status takes place).

Mark
Cornutopia Games
http://www.cornutopia.net

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Take a look into skeletal animation. Basically, you have a mesh (or a number of meshes) that are attached to the various 'bones' of a skeleton. Only the bones are animated; any mesh attached to the bones gets animated by proxy. Therefore, you can keep the same skeleton for a character, but hang different pieces of mesh on the skeleton to modify appearance.

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Simplify the skeleton as much as possible, time evolution on big skeleton might be slow.

btw, anyone knows some skeletal animation library to use in games? I heared one called Cal3D, but not sure whether it's the best to use.thanks

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Cal3D is decent, though I've never used it in a game. It was sufficient to teach me enough to write my own SA code, however, and includes a number of tools including a Blender export script written in Python that came in very handy when I was writing my own scripts.

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I'm doing this using skinned meshes and material IDs. My character's skin/armor parts are totally unrelated to my character's bones.

Each of my armors is it's own skinned mesh. Some are an entire body suit, others are just specific parts. Each peice of armor tells the character which body parts to hide when it is equipped. Those skin parts are skipped when rendering the body, then the armor parts are rendered.

This is really the only way I can imagine doing this with skinned meshes.

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