Aug. 26, 2008 @ 23:42
In the summertime

Blimey. Has it really been two months since I last posted something?

This summer has gone by really quickly and I’ve been extremely busy hence the lack of activity. I got to take a short holiday and went back to England for two weeks for my little sisters wedding. Apart from that I’ve been working like a maniac as we’ve got a product launch due for September at work which means a lot of overtime and late nights getting everything finished. 🙁

As I’m officially and “old fart” I’m afraid that after a hard day at the office I usually fall asleep as soon as I get home which means even less freetime. That said, what freetime I do have is currently spent on some writing projects and Ham and Jam. We’re going from Alpha to Beta soon and starting an aggressive testing programme so that’s going to keep my busy.

I’ve been getting a lot of e-mail asking about the SMD Exporter and Importer plug-ins so I figured I’d make a post here to answer some of the most common questions that people are asking.

For the exporter, I’ve been getting some good feedback from people on a couple of bugs but unfortunately haven’t had chance to address them all yet. The two most common are problems with material types in Max installed in languages other than English and crashes with mirrored bones. The language issue is solved and will be in the next update. The mirrored bones is a more complex problem and may take some time to fix.

I’ve said before and I’ll say again, don’t mirror bones in Max!. The most common mistake people is making is using the Tools->Mirror command in Max. This is the wrong way to do it and simply reverses the axis which is why your getting export problems. If you’re going to mirror bones, use Animation->Bone Tools turn on Bone Edit Mode and use the Mirror button. That will mirror them but keep the axis in the right orientation. For dummies you’ll have to mirror them manually but that doesn’t take too much work.

As for the SMD Importer, again I haven’t had much time to work on it but it’s certainly a lot further ahead that it’s been in a long time. Currently it’ll import meshes, UV, textures and bones although at the moment I haven’t set-up the skin modifier or looked into animation.

I’ll try and post some more updates soon, but in the meantime please be patient! 🙂

Responses to “In the summertime”

mirroring bones in max is a huge pain and seems to mess things up most of the time. what do you suggest i do to make a symmetrical rig?

Posted by jlewis
Thu, August 28th, 2008 @ 01:17

Well for bones mirroring is easy if you use the bones tool and it’s built in mirror function. Dummies are a little more tricky. However, when you export your animation you really should *only* export the dummies/bones that make up the skeleton and not everything in the rig which a lot of people do.

So that said you can mirror any IK stuff or bone controllers if you like, just don’t mirror bones/dummies with the normal mirror tool.

Posted by Jed
Sat, August 30th, 2008 @ 13:03

So by saying it will ‘import bones’ does that mean that it will create a proper biped skeleton for the imported models? If so this is a MAJOR improvement over the current smd import plugins that are available – and kudo’s to you for that! Can’t wait until you get it released.

One other minor note about Mesh importing – the current importer ‘works’ in theory, but the resulting mesh doesn’t end up properly welded – it’s just a bunch of seperate polygon’s – so things like smoothing & the like end up screwed up after import. Sure it’s a one-button thing to weld the verts, but this can change the model potentially (unless you are very careful with how accurate you want the weld to be) – it would be much better to simply weld them during the import (in an ideal situation).

Anyways, like I said before – can’t wait to see the updated importer! Thanx in advance for your hard work.

Posted by hiro protagonist
Sun, August 31st, 2008 @ 07:53

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