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Blender Quest for Animated People - distorted animation in MSFS

Messages
218
Country
canada
I'm having a hell of a time trying to create animated person in MSFS. I would really appreciate any advice. Here's what I did:

1. I created a human figure in Make Human and exported to Mixamo website, where I rigged motion capture to it. So far - so good:

1619145646940.png

I then downloaded FBX and imported to Blender. Beside some normals and materials problems - it worked, animation is showing in Blender. Exactly as in Mixamo. I then named and pushed down the animation, made necessary XML code and exported to MSFS. Epic Fail! A distorted tiny shape - but animated:
1619145795696.png

I tried applying scale in Blender, but that screwed the animation which I could not redo, it came as is with the mesh from Mixamo. So I realized the figure is rotated wrong somehow. So I experimented with "Manual Orientation" on FBX import, and then exporting to MSFS.
1619145991085.png

After some narrowing up the axes and further scaling and rotating in MSFS I came to this setup:
1619145893839.png


It got me to correct orientation, and a working animation. But it's still subtly wrong, and I'm stuck! Wasted the whole day on this.
1619146069428.png

Don't mind the missing materials, I can get those back. But he is limping and his arms are far too wide and slightly weird. He's walking, but very unnatural. I tried narrowing "hand space" in Mixamo and imported this to Blender:
1619146173927.png

And this produced no change whatsoever to the MSFS animation - hands are still wide apart, one foot bending weirdly and overall very close, but no cigar. This reminds me the original pose from Make Human that I exported to Mixamo - hands were like that too, but Pose Edit in blender doesn't show that pose, nor is it anywhere I can see. The animation is perfect in Blender, but a fail in MSFS, although it's very close to normal, it feels like it needs just a small nudge.

Does anyone know how to do this properly? I mean some scenery producers have figured out animated people, so it is possible. I just can't figure it out! Any advice, tutorials etc.? I'm really desperate at this point...
 
Last edited:

Christian Bahr

Resource contributor
Messages
845
Country
germany
Since I only work with 3dsm, unfortunately I cannot offer any help. As much as I would like to do that.
 
Messages
83
Country
germany
Sorry I can't help you, but wow 😲 these failed characters look so cool.
It reminds me of some movies, but which? I am not helpful, sorry 😐
...
....
But I just can't stop looking at these images. The first failed one, it feels like a 2D person coming to life in a 3D world... But his suitcase is 3D 😂 How cool is that! You could create some cool posters of it. Boy I like these images!
 
Messages
218
Country
canada
Sorry I can't help you, but wow 😲 these failed characters look so cool.
It reminds me of some movies, but which? I am not helpful, sorry 😐
...
....
But I just can't stop looking at these images. The first failed one, it feels like a 2D person coming to life in a 3D world... But his suitcase is 3D 😂 How cool is that! You could create some cool posters of it. Boy I like these images!
It is cool, but it wears of when you bang your head on the wall for 2 days and can't solve it :)
 
Messages
120
Country
italy
So, do we have any working workflow for this?
Trying that since October with basically no results...getting crazy about this😂
 
Messages
116
Country
italy
here we all wasted time trying animations with blender
without success
I believe the best solution (maybe the only one...?) is to make animations with 3dsmax
as Christian B. did
 
Messages
218
Country
canada
I have partial success. It'd hit and miss though. There needs to be a "Default" action on a "0 pose" with applied transform and scale. I got the basic animation working, now need to make this animated person move, sort out materials and transforms etc.
I've based the structure on these:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/a...keaat-assetpack_windsock_mikeaat-w-jpg.70078/

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/attachments/2021-03-03-20_43_18-window-jpg.70079/

Add an animation named "Default_State" which is the armature without any scale, rotation and location.
Check "Do channels contribute to the result" checkboxes checked for the Default_State animation.

https://blender.stackexchange.com/q...med-armature-to-its-rest-position/30913#30913

I haven't had the time to finish it yet, but I'm reasonably optimistic that one person will be moving. I'm not sure I can repeat it though, seems like a bunch of black magic with same steps leading to different results.
 
Messages
120
Country
italy
I have partial success. It'd hit and miss though. There needs to be a "Default" action on a "0 pose" with applied transform and scale. I got the basic animation working, now need to make this animated person move, sort out materials and transforms etc.
I've based the structure on these:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/a...keaat-assetpack_windsock_mikeaat-w-jpg.70078/

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/attachments/2021-03-03-20_43_18-window-jpg.70079/

Add an animation named "Default_State" which is the armature without any scale, rotation and location.
Check "Do channels contribute to the result" checkboxes checked for the Default_State animation.

https://blender.stackexchange.com/q...med-armature-to-its-rest-position/30913#30913

I haven't had the time to finish it yet, but I'm reasonably optimistic that one person will be moving. I'm not sure I can repeat it though, seems like a bunch of black magic with same steps leading to different results.
And, both with handmade animations and mixamo the result is consistent? I'm thinking it might be some issues on how mixamo generates the rig, with some contribution of the importer settings with blender...not sure but, I'd have to try :D
 
Messages
120
Country
unitedstates
Hi all, I'm starting to dive into animations myself using Blender. Has anyone had success with a proven workflows yet?

Thanks.

-PEACE FARM
 

Christian Bahr

Resource contributor
Messages
845
Country
germany
LOL, there is nothing consistent about the whole thing! But it seems to work... Sometimes, but not others...
Hi, I would like to help and if I have understood it correctly, then there is a lack of a test character that was previously successfully exported to MSFS as an MSFS glTF model.
My suggestion would be that I create a Test Person in 3dsm and make it available to those who are interested. As an FBX file and as a Blender file. So that you can experiment with it.

The aim would be to find out where exactly the export from Blender fails. Is it perhaps because of the Blender export tool? ;)

How should we proceed? :)
 
Messages
21
Country
unitedkingdom
I'm at the same stage as the Op I've tried numerous different ways of exporting the animation to MSFS and they all end up very distorted and hardly recognisable most of the time. More than happy to help with any testing.

This is as far as I've got so far with the animation in the sim https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GT9G2O7oSyEMyN9KPYs19C2Se0aKQm1k/view?usp=sharing I can provide the fbx with the animation bones embedded and blender file if helpful

00309.jpg


Kev
 
Messages
21
Country
unitedkingdom
another thing I have found is that when importing the animated FBX you have to set a scale of 100 as one of the import parameters. If you don't you will find the mesh is scaled at 1.0 and the armature rig is scaled at 0.01 and I believe the rig should have the scale transformation applied before use. If you apply the scaling inside of blender then the animation positions are thrown out of place

Kev
 

Christian Bahr

Resource contributor
Messages
845
Country
germany
In case anyone is interested in an animated person for Blender and/or 3dsm. In the resource section of this forum I have stored the source files for an animated female character. Also included is an FBX file and PBR textures. The 3dsm file is prepared for export to MSFS :)

Link: 3d Character, female
 
Messages
21
Country
unitedkingdom
In case anyone is interested in an animated person for Blender and/or 3dsm. In the resource section of this forum I have stored the source files for an animated female character. Also included is an FBX file and PBR textures. The 3dsm file is prepared for export to MSFS :)

Link: 3d Character, female
This is the output in MSFS from your Blender file and then exported to MSFS. Short video is here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WME_Z-S4YWJIMcm80AOVWXZwobUa7Hko/view?usp=sharing

The animation in Blender looked just fine

Kev
 

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Messages
120
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italy
That's the same result I got when Christian kindly provided me that file a few months back. Seems like the issue is not within the import settings but mainly on the workflow or worse, the exporter. If it's a workflow issue, which I doubt, we can get around it. If it's just the exporter we have to wait for some good soul to identify where the issue is. As of now the most stable exporter we're provided is Vitus's, but I hope the guys at FBW can manage to sort their exporter out soon enough
 
Messages
21
Country
unitedkingdom
I'm running out of ideas to get a bones animation to load into the sim correctly but it's amusing what sometimes happens :)
 

Christian Bahr

Resource contributor
Messages
845
Country
germany
Sorry, but I just had a laughing fit. The alien, he looks like he's actually one of those Terminators from the science fiction film Terminator. They could also liquefy (some kind of mercury stuff) :D;)

My assumption is and has always been that the Blender glTF Exporter module has an error or does not process or can not process all relevant information. The FBX file and the 3dsm file can be exported without any problems and do not cause any errors. The people are produced by me as if on an assembly line - it's a standard process.

My idea would be to contact the developer of the Blender glTF export module to work with him on a solution. I don't know the export module, and I can't say why it might be. Where can I download it, how do I install it?

Perhaps it is important to mention in this context that the MSFS glTF format has a special modification to the "normal" glTF format. This is expressly emphasized in the documentation of the SDK!

Another approach is to create an animation group that includes both the bones and the mesh. In 3dsm, animations are created using the MSFS SDK tool "Babylon Animation Groups". The tool is called "Babylon Animation Groups:

3dsm_msfs_gltf_exporter_animation_groups.jpg

3dsm Babylon MSFS glTF SDK Tool - Babylon Animation Groups

3dsm_msfs_gltf_exporter_animation_groups_tool.jpg


It is important that the mesh and the bones are brought together in an animation group. Otherwise there are just those aliens and terminators as seen in the video from Kev :)
 
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