Dinosaur/Dragon Shot

Hey everyone, posting this here for anyone to give me some feedback on! I’ve used Ragdoll quite extensively for this but there was also A LOT of manual handkey animation involved, corrections etc. the jiggles on the dinosaur is all entirely handled by Ragdoll as well as the boar’s animation, was handled entirely by Ragdoll.

I mentioned to Marcus there would be a good idea to be able to animate collision on/off, as in order to get the most accurate results with ragdoll I created proxy meshes from the actual models and used those for the markers, this meant however that some parts that naturally intersected would end up colliding with each other if set on different overlap groups, for example for the dinosaur’s ragdoll at the end I needed to have the legs and arms on separate overlap groups as to avoid self-clipping, this meant however that during the walk cycles the legs would collide with the body, I could fix that by removing collision from the body but then the legs would end up clipping through it once the ragdoll animation took place, so I ended up splitting the two and running multiple simulations to get this result. I used the meshes provided by Jason for the dragon but I’ve eventually built my own physics on it, there’s much more animation for the dragon which Is not visible in this shot, I’ll probably post that too if anyone’s interested


Magnificent, thanks for sharing @MLV! I’ll pop in tomorrow with some notes. If possible, it would be great to see what the markers looks like for these.

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Thanks for the post! you can really see some life in there.

The first things that stand out animation wise are :

  • The Dinosaur has very sudden stops and starts in his motion- think of it as a huge bus moving. It’s going to take time to start and would take time to come to a complete stop .
  • The Boar might be a bit too dangly or loose, you could still throw some pose changes on him which would also help when the boar falls on its face. Adding some kicks in there would look impressive like the Dino has just caught it.
  • The dragon swooping down, would be cool to see it impact the Dino, or have the Dino drive to get out the way, right now it feels like the Dino faints.
  • Most of the animation feels right down an axis, would be nice to get some depth change in some of the poses.

Can’t wait to see more !

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this is pretty cool!!!
definitely this shot is the right candidate to apply the RAGDOLL !!!
Great inside and description ! Thanks for sharing !!!

Keep the wheel spinning !

What Jason said, in addition to:

  1. Physics-wise, when the boar drops to the ground, friction is too high. Makes it look like sandpaper against sandpaper. Try lowering friction on both ground and boar from the default 0.6 to e.g. 0.2 or less.
  2. Animation-wise, the dino lifts one leg each without shifting any weight. He would likely fall over but instead looks held up some an invisible force. For realism, you’ll want to keep the center of mass of the dinosaur directly above the foot that’s in contact with the ground. Except when he’s supposed to fall over, like when moving forwards. In which case the feet would catch him falling over at every step. But, he probably should not fall over sideways.
  3. When the dino dies at the end, I’m assuming it blows fire at him or something. Otherwise, I’d include the impact of the dragon hitting the dinosaur like Jason said.

Can you talk more about this? Can you demonstrate it? Like a before/after perhaps.

That could be implemented, it just hasn’t been requested yet. But it might not solve your problem; it’s not clear what should happen physically when collision is suddenly enabled again. If things overlap when they do, there isn’t any realistic result possible. Can you demonstrate where and how you think it would help you here?

I am!

I was just taking in all the feedback I’ve gotten about my shot, there was just a few things I wanted to address. The sudden stops in the dino, yeah that’s absolutely right, for some reason the COG controller didn’t get baked so I lost that part of the animation (rip) but I can easily hand-key it again. One thing I noticed as well with these rigs is that they seem to have 2 controls that have identical functionalities as the COG, so that would throw off the simulation after baking. Might be something I’d mention to Marcus, see if you can identify a specific controller as a COG controller which doesn’t affect any specific 1 joint but affects the creature as a whole, the boar suggestion is really cool, I’ll see if I can think of something, I have to re-run ragdoll on it anyways as I’ve to make changes to the dino. The dragon swooping down, well it’s meant to be breathing fire and that’s what takes down the dino (I have asked for help to some Houdini students to see if they can make some Fire VFX for this shot, hopefully I can get it done, I don’t much have time to learn Houdini as well right about now lol) one thing stood out about the animation being on 1 axis, and you’re dead right about that, the dino is just moving forwards on a straight like, how do you think I could address that and make it feel less like it’s on one axis? Thanks again for taking the time and helping me through this!

Have you thought about retarget- appending the extra cog that way it will also get simulation data applied to it.
I think even if the dino is getting hit by fire seeing strong reaction will be great to have .
As for breaking up the one axis feel, it’s all in the posing get some torsion in the chest and hips, as soon has everything flows straight down the body that’s when you’d want to get a bit of depth change.