I was wondering if you felt FK animation was enough to keep the toes from looking like they were “slipping” at the moment of contact (on humans as well as animals), or if this was a special case and a reverse foot IK would be in more common use. If FK is enough, I’m getting the idea that simpler is better.
Simply yes, Michaelb, Harvey,
Simple i find is always best. Every quad rig ive done has fk for the feet, no reverse foot or ik. And ive done really complex animations: rearing, falling over, getting up, turning. And they all hold up well. Ive even dont sitting down stuff etc, etc.
This doesnt mean its hard to do, as you wont it to work simply for the animators and simply for the rig. Remember animators also like to change the rig add there own touches etc etc.
We have 2 setups at work for bipeds feet, fk and reverse foot. Most of the time i.e 90% we use the fk setup- rotate foot-rotate toe. We occasionally add a bit of finesse with the reverse foot i.e jumping up, waving etc. Really for a time issue as animations have to be done fairly quick.
Remember ik chains are like expressions,constraints - the more you have the more data it has to chomp through. Even if there history independant it doesnt matter.
I always go back to the analogy of Geppetto. His puppets are just the right amount of sting, joints, screw etc. If he used 3 times the amount of strings for every part of the puppet theyd all get in the way, tangle up and probably break.
He only adds what he needs. If it can be done with fk then use fk. Because your bound to need more stuff, more iterations. You have to be effeciant.