View Full Version : Wackem - The Hover Mouse

08 August 2009, 12:57 AM
Here is a 3D animation that Iím working on. It was a one-man project, for school, to learn animation in 3ds. I picked it back up after graduating my animation program and Iíve been applying changes to it for a few days because I want to put the animation in my final demo reel.

I could use some thorough and fresh eyes to critique my progress. Any thoughts, suggestions, and feedback on this videoís animation, modeling, lighting, color/texture, design, and etc. would be greatly appreciated.

click here ( to view the video

08 August 2009, 04:57 AM
I quite like the "whipping" action that the mouse tail does. that was my favorite :thumbsup:

There are other parts where the tail movement doesn't seem to have had a reason to happen the way it did, it just sort of moved into place.

But I don't imagine that long tail was easy to manage.

Story wise... I have no idea what is going on. :blush:

08 August 2009, 03:15 AM
Thanks. Iíll see if I canít fix what youíre talking about and post an update asap.

Are there any particular areas that are in need of fixing? For example, at 0:10 the cord mouseís flick is too fast and stiff and it needs some anticipation added to it.

08 August 2009, 03:43 AM
Yeah, 0:10

similarly at :11 when it lassos the flying mouse.

maybe the overall problem is we don't know if the tail is a prehensile tail that can move and graps on its own or if it's a passive tail like a rope. It doesn't move on it's own enough to establish that it's prehensile, but if it is passive then the mouse isn't always doing enough to set it in motion.

About :12 or :13 , the flying mouse could make a much bigger show of the anticipation before it pulls the table mouse behind it

It's hard to crit because youtube doesn't let you scrub by frame so while I might feel that something "is wrong" it's hard to put my finger on exactly why.

09 September 2009, 05:19 AM
Thanks again, Rob. Iím definitely trying for a more passive feel, so it looks more natural and believable. Also, sorry about the youtube format. I'm a newbie to this site, but I'll see if I can't get a quicktime format on here or something. Hereís an update:

I took another pass at the cord, to make it look more passive.
Added some anticipation, follow-through and extenuation here and there.
Some minor adjustments and lighting adjustments
Composited some motion blur to get a good feel for what the final render will look like
Added a smidgen of handheld camera movement.
And, I pimped out the hover mouse.
Click here to view the Update. (

09 September 2009, 03:05 AM
If it were me... I'd be yanking that tail around with WAY bigger motions. I'd make a lot of things way bigger.

But maybe it doesn't matter?

I've been watching Disney shorts from the late 30's-early 40's... the character animation is usually always great but the mechanics on things like ropes and hoses and wires and stuff is all over the place. And it doesn't really matter.

If you were going for effects animation someone might nail you on the specifics, but you've got a funny spot there and maybe that's what's important.

09 September 2009, 04:42 PM
I get where you're coming from. Emphasis is important in animation.

I have this animation posted in the animation critique forum and someone pointed out the s-wave (shear wave) movement of the cord in comparison to Luxo Jr. I've been a little weary about the cord movement because of the size and weight of the mouse controlling it, but I can see that it could still use some more emphasis (especially between :03 to :06)

It was also mentioned that the stage is too symmetrical and bare, so I'm going to go back, with the rule of thirds, and add some props etc. to make the shot look more interesting and to make the environment look more inhabited.

10 October 2009, 05:40 PM
Here it is. This is probably the last update that I'm going to apply to this. As always, C&C are welcome.

Click here to view the animation (

10 October 2009, 07:10 PM
I like the idea you came up with. Problems I see pretty much all involve the cord. For instance at 9 seconds the mouse takes a tiny jump, and that motion follows the entire way through to the end of the cord. I think the jumping action was too weak to have that much influence on the cord. It also looked like the arc of the cord was goofy at times. I can't imagine animating that cord was easy though so good job on what you have done.

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