View Full Version : Does messiah have motion retargeting function?

06 June 2008, 03:31 AM
Does messiah have motion retargeting function?

just motionbuilder's story tools.

06 June 2008, 02:07 PM
What does motion re-targeting do? Can you give us a few more details?

06 June 2008, 01:52 AM
Motion retargeting ,just like this:
I have two characters,
Character_A, is a little guy.
Character_B, is a big guy.

While I finished key the animation for the little guy, like walk or run....
Or, I have some motion library, mocap motions,
Now the big guy can use the little guy's motion or other motions as well.

The simple way to do this should be:
Character_B define a group(of course contains character's skeletons,rigs..),and add a track to it, load the motion as a clip . and it can drive the character.

And I konw there is another way to do this, here it is:
load the character_A's motion,just skeleton, and skin to the Character_B again.
and I think doing this should be very slow, even messiah's skin is simple.

06 June 2008, 02:03 AM
Guess you answered your own question then. :-)

06 June 2008, 02:50 AM
No, I can't do this in messiah:
The simple way to do this should be:
Character_B define a group(of course contains character's skeletons,rigs..),and add a track to it, load the motion as a clip . and it can drive the character.

I done this in motionbuilder, right now, I want to do this in messiah ,but i can't find a way to make this works.

Help me please~

06 June 2008, 03:27 AM
Oooooo. Ok. I got confused.

Short answer to your question. . . is yes. It can be done.

You pretty much do the same thing in Messiah as you do it in Motion Builder from what I can tell. Lets see if I can walk you through it.

<imagine me putting my goggles on>

First you select all the things on your character that move. IK targets, sliders etc. Once you have them all selected, right click on one of the selected items and pick "New Group" and then name it.

So now you have a group. In the "Compose" tab, click on the "Track" tab and you will see a "Record" block on the top. That is where you create motion clips of the different groups you have. It should be the only one on the list but if it isn't. . . make sure the group you want is selected. Then pick "Current Group" as the source, All channels as the Channel, Type would be "Animation", Bounds would be "Range" and "Motion" would most likely be "Local Keys". So once you have all that set you just click "Copy" on the Record line and it will make a motion clip for you.

So then you click on the "Clips" tab and you can see the motion clip that you have created. Below that is another little tab called "clip" and there you can change its name and save it by clicking on the "File" button.

Then in your scene with your other character you would create a group with all the same named bones. In the Compse, Tracks tab, you click on the group you just made and then a new tab shows up below that called "Group". Click the "New Track" button and it will create a new track for that group. Now in the Compose, Clips, clip tab, load up the motion clip that you saved so that it is listed in the Clips list. Then go back to the Compose, Tracks tab, select the track you created and in the Track tab that shows up below, pick your clip from the list. . . it should just be there if there is only one. . . and click "Add". The clip will be added to that track and your other character will be moving! YAY!

NOW. . . if you have named something wrong. . . don't fear! There is another cool tab in there that helps out a lot. Its the Compose, Match tab that lets you assign motion from one thing to another. It has Auto Match tools. . . etc. Good stuff if you want to hack together something that got messed up and you don't want to start over.

K so thats. . . the hard way.

<imagine me sipping a red bull>

The easy way. . . is to just load up the .fxs file that has your old character and its motion into your scene that has the new character's mesh and then in the Setup tab, click on "Effects" tab and you should see all the items in your scene on the left and all the effects on the right. There should be a bone deformer on the right with the mesh of the old character in the list. Click on that mesh and then above the lists there are three buttons. Add, Remove and Replace. Click on Remove. So now the old character's geometry is no longer being effected by its old bones.

Now select your new character's geometry on the list on the left, select the bone deformer on the right and then click on the "add" button. This will add the geometry of the new character to the old character's bone deformer and . . . thats it! The new character will move like the old one! Yay!

Of course. . . they'd have to be exactly the same in proportions for this to work that easily so its kind of up to you as to what method you want to use.

PHEW! I do NOT think this is how it SHOULD be. In Animation Master this whole process is about a bazillion times more intuitive but once you have done it a few times in Messiah. . . its not too bad.

Hope that helped.

06 June 2008, 06:25 AM
You had typed so many words to let me understand!~

You are sooooooooooooooo nice!!
You are great!!
Thank you very much for your help!!

there's another question...
i hope you don't get mad on me....

So, I have complete your Great tutorials,
Now I want to add some motions base on the clip motion, Such as a walking clip, add some rotation to the head or spine, raise hands....., and how to make it work?
Is there any tracks name additve track or override track,and I can add those rotation keys to this track as addtive mode?

06 June 2008, 06:52 AM
Well its all in the manual. . . but. . . yes you can change the clips effect on the base animation with additive, replace and things like that. When that little icon next to your clip on the Track editor is "=" it will replace, "+" will add too etc.

06 June 2008, 08:31 AM
If you happen to have different hierarchies in the source rig and the target rig, you have to use expressions to retarget the motions. I've written a little expression 'EP_Retarget' which makes this process simpler. You can find it in the 'ExpressionPack' plugins described here (

06 June 2008, 08:56 AM
Thanks again!
I have seen the messiah DOC, and the manual used a older version of messiah, and buttons is not there any more, I follow the manual and stuck there many times...

I can find the "+" and trigger it .
but I can't trigger the c,g,ck,gk, why? the area are empty,

thanks again!!!

06 June 2008, 10:44 AM
I don't think the c, g, ck, gk stuff is there anymore.
Another thing you can do with the motion clip is that after it's on there you can bake it down to keyframes on the items in the groups if you want.

If you've named your group and items the same in your scene, this script should be able to move the motion over too:

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