View Full Version : Critique wanted for walk cycle

07 July 2006, 02:49 AM
Due to bugs in Blender I have kind of lost momentum working with my walk cycle, since the problems I was experiencing made trying to animate frustrating and difficult. A new version of Blender is coming out soon and the latest release candidate for it has fixed the problems, so I'm wanting to start back with this walk cycle again.

I'm trying to go for just a basic walk cycle nothing special in terms of character or flavor. I want to use this animation to test this character in a simple game engine I want to develop.

I had posted an earlier version of this cycle, and got a little feedback. I've made a few changes to it, and I know there is still stuff that needs improvement.

Over all, I think the animation looks fine. However I'm so new and inexperienced at this right now, that I'm certain more experienced eyes will spot things that I can't see.

From my limited experience, it seems the biggest problem is that the animation is stiff, particularly in the arms. I'm hoping that offsetting keys will improve this. I've never done that before, so I don't know how well it will work. Also, I'm a little reluctant to apply that technique right now as it seems to me to be more of a minor refinement and I'd like to make sure there aren't more important things to worry about before I start dealing with that. Of course, I could be wrong in this kind of thinking, and maybe it is more important than I realize.

Anyway, I would appreciate any feedback people care to offer. Since I am rather new at this, it would really help me to please be as explicit and detailed as possible.

Here are links to different views of the animation:

07 July 2006, 04:13 AM
This is puzzling. At least 14 views of this thread, and no replies. I'm certain there are things to comment on with this animation. I'm wondering why I have received no feedback yet.

07 July 2006, 04:31 AM
Hi Tron,

I'm new here too and I found that it usually takes a little while for somebody to take the time to post a reply but usually you'll at least find a few ppl willing to help you. From what i can see in your animation, I think the problem is the fact there is very little animation in the spine. You have him bouncing on the y axis but it doesn't look like there's any rotation in the pelvis or in the torso. Unless you're going for a very stylized walk, the pelvis will move in every axis as well as translate on every axis. so even tho he's going forward, his hips will sway back and forth as his weight shifts from one leg to the other. the hip will also dip and twist as he walks. I think you'll find that once you start putting more animation in the hips and torso, your walk will seem less stiff.

Hopefully this will help you. I'm working on a walk cycle myself. If you have time, take a look at my post and let me know what you think. Any comments and criticism is always appreciated.


07 July 2006, 04:19 PM
Despite the fact that I did not get a lot of response here, I did get feedback from other sources. So, I'd thought I'd post an update here to see if I can spark any more interest.

I have posted new versions of the walk cycle. They are at the same links as the originals listed in the first posting for this thread.

I've tried to address all the problems brought up in the feedback I've received. I think the animation looks good from the side view. There seems to be some kind of jerkiness to the motion or something else that just isn't quite right when I look at the angled version. I can't really tell what's wrong with it. I'd like to know what other people think.

Here is what I have changed:

- I fixed the popping of the leg that was occurring at frame 3 and 18.

- I've straighten the leg out when it makes contact with the floor. The leg goes totally straight just before the contact frame. I'm not sure if this is bad or not.

- I've added motion into the spine, both front to back, and side to side. This should add more action into the hips, shoulder and head. I never animated the spine before with the previous test animation I did, so I wasn't exactly sure how to go about it. Also, I didn't find a lot of information about how to animate the spine from references I consulting on the Internet. I studied what I could and tried to figure out what makes sense. I don't know if I got this right or not. This is certainly an area where there could be a need for feedback.

- I've added a side ways weight shift when the character lifts the back leg.

- Finally I've added more rotation into the wrists. I've made the hands turn inward when arms swing in front of the body, and I've added more over all motion which I think makes the hand look a lot looser.

07 July 2006, 10:08 PM
the overlap on the head is alittle off of the beat of the walk.
the arms are also a little stiff.

it is looking good.


07 July 2006, 01:10 AM
Since I wasn't exactly sure of how to animate the spine and head, I'm not sure the if the head motion occurs too early or to late with respect to the rest of the walk.

How should it be adjusted?

07 July 2006, 02:57 AM
maybe pull the head forward a bit more. the overall action seems to be going backwards. instead of having the head jerk back, after the foot is planted have it lump a little and then return to a slightly up and forward position. the neck general is foward off of the body when standing regularly. you have overlap it just looks as though it is going towards the characters back instead of his front. and it is somewhat of a violent jerk backwards. try to ease the action a bit more.
does this make sense? if not I can try diagraming a photoshop.


07 July 2006, 03:26 AM
pretty nice animation. i bet you should get some walk references from actual people, try going out and observe people walking. :thumbsup:

07 July 2006, 08:34 PM
Hey Ryan,

I'm not sure how well I understand everything you have said. I think I grasp some of it, and some of it I'm not sure about. A believe a visual representation of what you are talking about would definately be helpful. If you wanted to create something, that would be great.

07 July 2006, 08:34 PM
Hey Ryan,

I'm not sure how well I understand everything you have said. I think I grasp some of it, and some of it I'm not sure about. I believe a visual representation of what you are talking about would definately be helpful. If you wanted to create something, that would be great.

07 July 2006, 11:59 PM
I have update the animation again. The links again are:

I smoothed out the side to side motion of the body
I adjusted the arms in attempt to loosen them up
I made the head bob forward more and backward less
I also change the side to side bobbing of the head as it was occurring on the wrong frames.

Over all think it looks good. I would say this is the best version of the walk cycle I've done yet. I'd like to know what others think.

07 July 2006, 06:35 PM
hey tron, it looks pretty good. But i think 'd get more critiques if you looped the walk cycle so it actually was a cycle. It is much easy to see what is happenign if the cycle is looping rather then having to replaying it over and over. Try looping the animation if u can so u have a smooth continueous walk cycle that last for about 5 seconds.

07 July 2006, 10:16 PM
I made another update. Same links as before. I determine that the spine was bending sideways in the wrong direction when shifting the weight. Bending the spine in the new direction seems to move the shoulders up and down too much so I also adjusted them.

I'd like to know what people think of this new version.

07 July 2006, 10:25 PM
Hey Reid,

The files are in QuickTime format. If I had QuickTime Pro I could save the files so the automatically loop. For what I'm doing I don't feel I can justify the expense of purchasing QuickTime Pro.

Besides it's really easy to make a QuickTime movie loop in the basic QuickTime player. All someone needs to do is press Ctrl+L (for Windows) or Command+L (for Macintosh) on the keyboard. Alternatively, someone can also select the Loop item from the View menu. This is what I do everytime I want to evaluate these animations when I'm working on them.

It seems difficult to believe that the fact the movies don't loop automatically would be a problem in regards to feedback, since it is so easy for someone viewing the animations to change.

How much of deterent is it that the movies don't loop automatically?

07 July 2006, 11:36 PM
you are correct. it is very easy to loop it. i was just playing the vids in my browser and the loop ctrl L thinng didnt work.. but when saving the file and opening it in quicktime it is indeed very easy to loop. I do no though that ppl are lazy, really lazy, lol.. especially in this internet age. so things have to be spoon fed and set up extremely easy for them these days. im in a rush... but every little thing to make acces and visibility easier helps... nice work by the way! :P

08 August 2006, 10:39 PM
I have updated my walk cycle animation. People can download the latest version here:

I am unable to set the animations to loop so it is best to view them in an standalone player as opposed to a web browser.

What do people think of this new version?

08 August 2006, 06:42 PM
I think it's look good!

In my mind urs arms are not flexible enough. try to change this.

good luck.

08 August 2006, 01:21 AM
I worked a lot on the arms already. What specificially do you think would need to be done to make them more flexible.

08 August 2006, 06:55 PM
Something that I think would help is if you varied your timing up a little more so that everything isn't hitting close to the same time. Addressing the arms are you using IK or FK on them because I would really suggest sticking with FK for something like this because it will help you with keeping the natural arch/swing in the arms. It looks like you are trying to create just a standard walk but try having the arms drag a little behind, and work with some ease-in and ease-out on those arms, right now the speed is very linear. The legs are locking out on the character also and a way to fix this may be to twist the waist a little more when the legs are spread out because if you are going for a realistic/human walk you don't really lock your legs out, cartoony you can get away with it but it doesn't seem as if you are going cartoony with this. The character also looks like he is coming up on his tiptoes when he is pushing forward instead of the toes bending and pushing from the ball of the foot like a person does. One last suggestion would be loosening up the head and body some may help but for the most part it isn't a bad start.

I hope these suggestions help and good luck with the walk.

08 August 2006, 09:37 PM
I have made some changes to my walk cycle animation:

I shifted some key frames a bit and added a few new ones. I can't tell that is has made a lot of difference. I'd like to know what people think. I know I have a problem with the foot where the character goes up too much on the toes. The joint for the toes needs to move back into the foot more so the foot can rotation up onto the ball better. I'm not going to worry about that right now because I think there are bigger problems with the animation that need attention. I just can't figure out what's wrong, and I'm hoping other people can point me in the right direction.

08 August 2006, 10:43 PM
I have update the animations for my walk cycle.

The animates don't loop so its best to view them in a stand alone player.

I adjusted the head movement some and I fixed the fix so the character stays on the balls of his feet instead of going up on his toes.

What do people think of this latest version?

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