How to animate attachment/linkage?

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Old 08 August 2006   #1
How to animate attachment/linkage?

I've come across a problem that I'm not sure how to handle. In a nutshell, how do you make a character's limbs have a temporary attachment? I have two characters fighting and I want to have one character jump onto the back of the other, and hold onto his back.

My guess is: place a point constraint on the arm control to a locator, then animate the weight of the constraint to 0 when he lets go?

am I right? If so, how do you keep the arm from popping back to its keyed position when weight turns to 0? It's not a gradient of attachment between 1 and 0, it's just -off- or -on-.

Is there a better, more controllable method?

Many thanks for the help!
Geoff Clark
Old 08 August 2006   #2
create a node (empty group/locator/whatever) and leave it at the origin. pointconstraint the armcontroller to this new node aswell as the back of the other character.

now you'll have 2 weight values on your pointconstraint node. if you now animate these values, you'll get a "gradient" value as you put it .

both to 0 = hand isn't constrained at all.
both to 1 = hand will follow each object halfway.
originNode to 1, back to 0 = hand will not follow the back anymore and is freely animatable.
back to 1, originNode to 0 = hand will follow the back fully
Animator @ Double Negative
Old 08 August 2006   #3


Ahh yes, I hadn't thought of that. I will give it a shot pronto!! Many thanks.

Geoff Clark
Old 08 August 2006   #4
I found a similar solution; When I do my pointConstraint to my target, I get a new attribute in my channels called blendPoint. This is the 'gradient' slider I was looking for. So, with a single constraint weight set to 1 (all the time, not animated), I can just animate blendPoint between 1 and 0 and it will get that effect I was looking for. hope this helps..
Geoff Clark
Old 08 August 2006   #5
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