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Unreal Engine 4 - Animations

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hi guys, im from Argentina and i want to make a video game , horror one, i want to throw you back on how i started ... ok, since a loong time ago i started making video games .. my first one was a game called psicosis (played by markiplier in youtube) i got a little of a good motivation because the video grow up to 1 million views for a game that i made in only 1 hour of work... really bad one hahaha, next i moved up to a new horror game called HOTEL 666 , made in fps creator (you can found it on google too) 

 

so here is the thing, i moved from unity to unreal engine 4  because it brings to me a lot of features like shadows and good shaders , so its best for me..

 

so here is my trouble, i really never did any animation on blender, or even 3D max... here is the thing, i started doing some changes on a 3D character on unreal engine, i put the camera of a 3d player animated to his head, so now i have a true fps camera , i can see my legs and all are working just great, but here is the thing, i want to do some animations, like to grab a flashlight, or even show with those hands a flashlight by pressing f , anyone knows if i need to reanimate all the character , or i can do it in the animation editor ?? because is a really new world to learn how to animate, but i only want to make that player grab a flashlight and keep it while it runs or walk...

 

Here is an image what i just done: https://forums.unrealengine.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=16587&d=1415473303

 

for the momment this is what i did just did... and it works really well with the prefab animations of UDK , but i want to change some things like i said... do some flashlight animations and another things like crouch..

is there a way to do this without so much effort or a new software to do 3d animations ?

 

thanks in advansed guys , have a great day

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anyone knows if i need to reanimate all the character , or i can do it in the animation editor ?

 

You don't need to reanimate your character. What you need is two separated animations, one for walking and the other holding the flash light.

Using Unreal you can blend these animations into a new animation. 

In the Unreal 3rd person template you will see in the animation folder there is a example of a blend animation, it is a 2D blend using  the animations "Idle"+"Walk"+"Run". You will need a different animation blend, this one will just be a guide line.

 

From the image I can see that you are using the character from the template, you will not be able to export it to Blender or Max and create new animations. You will need your own character and it's own animations or you will need to find more animations for the default character.

 


is there a way to do this without so much effort or a new software to do 3d animations ?

 

Animation is a art on it's own like 3D modeling, painting, playing a musical instrument or even making games. No software is going to turn you into a animation artist, just as switching from Unity to Unreal didn't turn you into a AAA studio.

 

Know that there is some things you can do now to improve the quality of your animations, like learning the 12 principles of animation.

Accept that your game won't be know for it's animations unless you employ a animation artist. Use bad animations to your advantage, seeing a person walk strange is scary and alien; good for both sci-fi and horror games.

 

 

Tip: when using Blender and unreal use NLA action strips for saving animations.

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Assuming that by the camera is animated, you mean that the camera is actually attached to the skeleton of the mesh then there are some tricks that you can use.

Animating in blender is a huge pain if you're doing it by hand. Usually you will spend weeks just on one animation. So that's going to be a no go.

If you don't mind making a bit of an investment, you can do what me and a few colleagues did last semester in college for fun. You get A skin suit and some Ping pong balls and make a custom mo-cap suit. You stitch the balls onto key areas of the body with enough to help determine the axis of rotation.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Black-Men-s-Skin-Suit/39619993
http://www.amazon.com/Practice-Ping-Pong-Balls-Tennis/dp/B011BX88PI


Get a cheap web cam. You'll want the camera's set up to be completely level with a flat ground. And you want to know how high up it is. As long as there is enough contrast between your pong balls, and your background, it won't matter what your lighting looks like.

http://www.amazon.com/D-Link-DCS-930L-mydlink-Enabled-Wireless-N-Network/dp/B00452V66G/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1440399114&sr=1-2&keywords=Wireless+webcam

It helps if you got a long USB cord for it, or if it's wireless. And do some mo-caps of you. Blender has built in software for mocap, and it works fantastically well.

Make sure you make animations for all your interactions. It doesn't matter where it goes really on the next step.

The next step is you want to look into Inverse Kinematics. This will retarget your animations to allow your character to home in on objects he wants to grab without animating it individually.

Hope this helped. This ingenuity was brought to you by a broke American college student. Bringing you Mo-cap for around $60.

If you want to go the extramile, break out the wires extra cloth, and LEDS, and turn that bad boy into a more complete Ghetto mo-cap suit. Edited by Tangletail

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There are lots of free animations out there. Check opengameart.org and mixamo.com. 

 

Each of these provide either animations already part of a skeletal mesh or a way to apply new animations to a skeletal mesh you have already. 

 

Either way you can use animation retargetting in UE4 to extract that animation and place it on your own character.

 

For example here is what I've done in my own game using this technique and animations from mixamo against a free skeletal mesh from opengameart:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=4cDr8-PTdao

 

Hope this helps!

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There are lots of free animations out there. Check opengameart.org and mixamo.com. 

 

Each of these provide either animations already part of a skeletal mesh or a way to apply new animations to a skeletal mesh you have already. 

 

Either way you can use animation retargetting in UE4 to extract that animation and place it on your own character.

 

For example here is what I've done in my own game using this technique and animations from mixamo against a free skeletal mesh from opengameart:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=4cDr8-PTdao

 

Hope this helps!

In mixamo you need to pay for good ones, i dont think they have free ones for comercial use

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In mixamo you need to pay for good ones, i dont think they have free ones for comercial use

Not right now you don't.

They've been acquired by adobe so are unable to sell right now. Every account you register gets ten completely free auto rigs and 20 free animations (any animations not just the freebie sets).

Now is the time to take advantage before adobe establish a pricing structure...

Edit: seems you can use all their assets commercially too: https://community.mixamo.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/204329417-Can-I-use-Mixamo-resources-commercially-

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