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DiGiman
03-03-2003, 09:20 PM
Any suggestions on the better character animation package.

froggyplat
03-03-2003, 10:41 PM
not being an A:M user i couldn't give you much advice over which is better. but, i can't imagine a character anim package that is much better than MB, esp. for the price.

plus, consider you're getting all the necessary tools for animation, plus a whole lot more, plus real-time feedback plus excellent support. and it only costs you $128 to try it out for a year. soo....
:)

DiGiman
03-03-2003, 10:52 PM
Is MB cabable of exporting your animation back into your modelling/rendering app.

That is my main concern.

Second, what makes MB better for animating than my standard 3D package. Is it because it is solely dedicated to animation. Maybe I've just answered my own question. TIA

Nonproductive
03-03-2003, 11:45 PM
I have both A:M and Motion Builder...

Your question is really a "it depends" answer.

If you already own a 3D package for mdoeling and rendering that Motionbuilder has FBX support for (see their web site) AND you don't intend to do commerical work (ie. can use PE license) than I would say Motion builder is the better app. It's more stable, flexible and generally just plain fast as all hell. It is much more friendly and forgiving overall when compared to A:M. Company attitude and support is also much better over at the Kaydara side.

However, if you don't already own a 3D package and just want to learn character animation with no real concern for output then A:M is a better deal at $300 (plus $100 p/year if you decide to stay current with your "subscription") A:M is finnicky. You need to learn the way A:M works instead of the way you want to work in some cases, otherwise you will be crashing constantly. Once you get beyond that learning curve though A:M is *very* capable in terms of it's character animation tools. I would go as far as to say that it is better in many ways then most of the "high end" 3D apps when it comes to character animation and rigging. It also has a very powerful materials system. BUT... it's render engine currently is kind of weak, it doesn't play nice (if at all) with other apps and modeling with splines is not everyone's cup of tea. It is a *fantastic* learning tool if you can get yourself into the "Hash" mindset.

Nonproductive
03-03-2003, 11:52 PM
Originally posted by DiGiman
Is MB cabable of exporting your animation back into your modelling/rendering app.
...
Second, what makes MB better for animating than my standard 3D package. Is it because it is solely dedicated to animation. Maybe I've just answered my own question. TIA

Maybe I should try to actually answer your questions :)

Motion Builder imports/exports in FBX format - if your current modeling/rendering tool has FBX plugin support than you should be good to go. Though there are limitations in some cases (see Kaydara's site for details by app)

Motion Builder is better, in most cases, because it is a single purpose tool. It's greatest strengths are it's speed and the reusability of it's "components" - skeletons, motion files, poses, etc... You can literally animate in "real time" and change animations on the fly. This is all while watching a fully textured and lit openGL preview of the animation. It's blazingly fast on my machine. In terms of reusable skeltons - basically once you have yoru character "characterized" in Motion Builder any motions you create are then usable by any other character that has been "characterized." So you create a generic walk cycle and use it on any character you need to - and still have the ability to tweak the cycle to suit that particular character's personality.

froggyplat
03-04-2003, 12:13 AM
Nonproductive:

The license for the Freelancer edition doesn't limit you to non-commercial work. You can use it for production work provided you are using it as an individual, not as a studio.

Nonproductive
03-04-2003, 12:50 AM
Well there ya go ;) then really the only factor is expense *if* you need to buy a seperate modeling/rendering package. If you already own a supported package then Motion builder is less expensive and a better tool. (of course - just my opinion)

DiGiman
03-04-2003, 03:34 PM
Thanks
That was a very thorough review.
I appreciate the feedback, I think I will get the personal learning edition of motion builder, on you're recomendation.

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