Creating a Character Rig – Part 2: Basic spline torso (Advanced)

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This movie shows you how to create a set of spine joints that can be manipulated from a pair of bind joints.

Level: Intermediate
Recorded in: Maya 2013


33 responses to “Creating a Character Rig – Part 2: Basic spline torso (Advanced)”

  1. So I need some help if anyone is willing. I could not get my advanced twist controls to work at all. What I discovered is that when I created my spline IK, it totally messed up my joint orientation. In my skeleton I have 4 joints on the spine chain, and I was very careful to make absolutely sure those joints were oriented properly. As soon as I try to make a spline ik, the orientation of joints 3 and 4 rotate 180 degrees on the x axis to where just on those two joints I now have the positive y axis pointing to the right of the character and the positive z pointing out front. one the first 2, pos y is to the left and pos z is to the back, just like i had initially oriented the whole chain. And with that there is no way to get the twist controls working and im sure fk controls would break too if i tried to set them up with this orientation problem going on. Im at a loss, there are no settings when making the spline ik, it just does it however it does it, i cant seem to find a way to stop this flip from happening. My initial joint chain for the spine is curved to more closely fit the geometry of my mesh, and thats the only thing difference about mine that i could see causing a problem.

  2. GAME DEVELOPERS. If you're like me, you may have noticed that these tutorials seem to involve using separate joint chains, a lot of rigs Ive seen keep them separate as well (not sure if this series keeps them separate, I haven't gotten that far, but lets assume it does) , this is fine for things that stay in Maya. Problem is Unreal, for example, flips out if you try to import that, it requires the entire skeleton to be connected to a single root. I was worried these these tutorials wouldn't work because of that. I did some experiments, what I found out as a workaround is that you can have your separate joint chains for rigging, and have an almost identical, but fully connected, result skeleton with a single root for final binding and exporting into unreal. And assuming you have comparable joints in the same positions you can drive the movement of your unreal skeleton by using PARENT (NOT point) constraints connecting the joints of the rig skeleton that were setting up in these videos to the joints of your final skeleton, essentially retargeting the whole thing. So if anyone is using this to learn to rig game characters, and is wondering about that workflow difference, this method should help later down in the pipeline.

  3. Hi Maya Learning Channel…. Thanks for this tutorial. I have a doubt. Did you slice the mesh like that for proxy rig ? And in some comments you told you will combine it all and then what about proxy rig ?

  4. I am starting from the beginning again with my male humanoid character and I got to part 2 @ 4:23 when I noticed what appears to be a potential problem.

    I am assuming that it is important to have the arm and leg joint chains centered where they meet the spine links but, when centered, my spine chain does not line up with the center of both the arm and leg unless I put a harsh curve on it. I and I have a strong feeling that this would not work well.

    The question is, would it be better to create a clavicle joint at the shoulders to get the centering of the arms or reposition my geometry to catch the center of the spine ends? See image at:

    I am also wondering about the center positioning of Emma's spine in the display window compared to mine. Will this be a problem down the line? (See: Center line displayed in red).

  5. hi, its me again…i just started learning your tutorial and I have my first question. When I created my spine joints, the Y axis is pointing towards the back. Is this ok or do I have to rotate them and make them point towards the front of the body? is there a difference when all of the Y axis are pointing at the back or at the front? Thank you

  6. a previous comment mentioned being unable to select control vertices on spine_CRV. I have a similar problem even though I have "select by component type" turned on, I can't seem to find a point to click or manipulate, I have Display>NURBS>CVS on. so I can see them, but I can't actually select them for some reason.

  7. Does anyone know how to create a Mel command script for creating Ik spline handle in the first and last joints in a chain? Also how to bind smooth skin to two bind joints and a curve using a Mel command?

  8. This lesson is completed in 2013 and I'm using Maya 2017 1st thing I have notice there is no Polygon drop down menu it's modeling I was looking for Polygon Mesh Extract tool I found Modeling–> Edit Mash –> Extract my question is: does it do the same job & is there any other serprizes I should be expecting

  9. I made a MEL script based off this entire tutorial series to automate the process. If you want to learn more about rigging I would still recommend this video tutorial as it is very informative and a good introduction to rigging, but if you want to get the job done fast and hassle free give this script a try and feel free to leave feedback!

    Just putting it on this video as well since alot of people might skip over the common pitfalls video haha.

  10. I have a quick question: I made sure all my rotation axis are the same as yours, and that "Automatically orient joints" is turned off. However, when I rotate my spine forward, it twists. When I rotate it sideways, it goes forward, and so on. What should I do?

  11. I have a character that is suppose to be covered in fur. Could I just animate the first scene with my character bare and then put fur and cloths on and expect them to act accordingly with my characters movements?

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