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Sirren

Character mesh topology: any books explaining...

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Hello there. I'm currently making a few new creatures for an old sprite base game. Up to now I made a few bots (easy to make...) and a bunch of mutant creatures. Since they're all invented figures I didn't need any particular care with limbs/body topology, and expecially the bots. Recently I felt the need to face a human character. This current project should have enough animation sequences to be used by the player, and it didn't take long to realize that the model topology and my lack of skill were going to matter a lot this time. I looked/googled here and there and I managed to find a few good tutorials. For now I managed to have elbows and knees bend as they should. Needless to say the worst part are hips (buttocks) and shoulders... I'm talking about clothed figures here. To make a long story short: I feel tutorials are good to make a particular character, but I need to understand how to devise my own topology if I want to get serious. Can you recommend any books explaining how each of those splines are going to behave? (I mostly need stuff for lowpoly, and I already got a couple of manuals about anatomy for artists). Sorry for my long rant... See you.

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I searched around on this yesterday for you, but couldn't find any tutorials specifically detailing good edge-loops for humanoid modelling. The best I can recommend is to google various iterations of the phrase and see if people have posted screenshots of wireframes of good humanoids to various forums or galleries. You can learn an incredible amount just by studying how they laid out their edgeloops.

One tip: studying anatomy DOES help greatly, for example on your shoulder problem, you should wrap the edgeloops like a mantle across the shoulders and chest, as when you raise your arms/tighten the shoulders, they pull the chest muscles up and to the outside. Understanding muscle flow and interlock/dependence will guide you most of the time (of course, this presumes you're modeling for animation)

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Yep, nothing really specific about the matter... I'm managing the thing with bits and pieces I managed to get here and there... For now I fixed my present trouble following the "Making of Joan of Arc" tutorial. The mesh does not bend in a perfect way, but it's substantially better than my previous one and and will do for now. The point is authors seldom explain the ins and outs of what they're doing: a modicum of skill is always assumed.
Studying other people meshes is a mixed business: I gave a look at several lowpoly charachters at Turbosquid (many preview images showing model topology)... I start wondering how on hearth a bunch of them is going to behave when animating... On the other hand I downloaded MakeHuman and tried to animate a mesh: it was a pleasure to see it bend as it should. The problem is they're too high poly for me to understand the basics.
Anyway, thanks for giving a look for me. Sometimes I also wander if it's me who cannot google...
See you and thanks again.

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