View Full Version : Character Animation Software Decision

11-24-2003, 08:00 PM
Hello, everyone,

I will embark on a new project very soon (practically now) and it will require me to do some character animation (just the regular biped, no facial expressions, no fingers). I have never really done this before and was wondering:
What would be the best software (combination) to get me up and running fastest? I want to spend as little time as possible with rigging.

Here are the (many) possibilities I'm looking into

* Use my LW7.5 and buy ACS4
* Use my LW7.5 and my Motionbuilder 4 that I haven't touched, yet
* Use my LW7.5 and buy Motionbuilder 5
* Wait for LW8 and use only it
* Wait for LW8 and use it with MB4
* Wait for LW8 and also get MB5

I have to start animating in about three weeks time, so it might not be a good idea to wait for LW8. But then again it could be an enourmous timesaver to do everything in LW and not learn another application, because I could use the time for modeling.

Please, do you have any suggestions?

Thanks for your help,


11-24-2003, 08:30 PM
If you dont know how to animate a character it will probably be just as difficult to do in any application.
If you already have LW7.5 and Motion builder I would stick with those. Doing it in a single app is better in my experience. Animating in LW7.5 by itself is fine provided (as with any 3D app) you have a good solid rig and know how to animate as I said.

11-24-2003, 09:24 PM
I've just started rigging a character for animating and find LW alone is pretty easy to setup the rig and get things working quickly. I've only spent like a full day getting my character rigged and with a couple endomorphs and I'm a complete beginner at this stuff. I say stick with LW (use 7.5 now and then 8 once its out). :shrug:

11-24-2003, 09:26 PM
As Larry stated,
IF you have mb and lw, you are good to go.

Otherwise, send me some of that cash burning a hole in ur pocket. ;)

11-24-2003, 09:59 PM
Thanks for your hints. :) I have played with ACS4 and it feels pretty good. Maybe even a bit too complex for what I want to do (a character made out of wooden building bricks living in a building brick town). Motionbuilder looks good too, but seems to necessitate a lot of research into how to actually integrate the animated character in the scene. I guess I just stick with plain Lightwave. Especially with 8 coming up (I already paid for it).

I am, of course, aware, that knowing how to operate the tools doesn't make me know how to animate. I had a brief encounter with character animation for my first short film (http://www.cgtalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=74701) but nothing serious.

But now it's time to get my hands dirty and put the theory I gathered from books like The Animators Survival Kit and The Illusion Of Life into practice. And what better way to do so than with a "real" project, with a goal in mind? At least for me this works great for learning new stuff.


11-24-2003, 10:01 PM
Otherwise, send me some of that cash burning a hole in ur pocket. ;)
I wish I could, but there is merely a hole in my pocket, no cash. ;)

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