HIK Retargeting

In this tutorial, you will learn how to apply Motion Capture data to a custom rig. I will cover both HIK equipped rigs and custom rigs.

To get Motion capture data, you can refer to Xbox Kinect tutorial or download Autodesk’s example files.

Things you will need:

  1. Autodesk Maya and Autodesk MotionBuilder
  2. A custom rig to apply the data

HumanIK (HIK)

Human IK retargeting is the preferred method of applying mocap data to a rig because it performs all the necessary calculations automatically to ensure the motion looks natural. It’s also a lot more user-friendly, intuitive, and efficent than the Constraints system.

If you have already sent your motion to Maya, you can skip steps 1 and 2.

  1. In MotionBuilder, deselect everything in the viewport and go to File -> Send to Maya – >Send as New Scene
  2. Wait for Maya to launch (if it’s not already running)
  3. In Maya, go to Window -> Animation Editors -> HumanIK
  4. In the side panel that appeared, under Character, select your character from the dropdown (Not MocapDeviceCharacter)
  5. Under Source, select Character1 (or the name your Motion Capture system names the output rig)
  6. Play back the animation. Your custom rig should match the mocap system’s rig. To edit the motion, use the Graph editor to edit the curves of the Mocap rig.

Constraints

If your rig is not set up for HumanIK or setting it up for HumanIK would be too difficult, using constraints can also work.

If you have already sent your motion to Maya, you can skip steps 1 and 2.

  1. In MotionBuilder, deselect everything in the viewport and go to File -> Send to Maya – >Send as New Scene
  2. Wait for Maya to launch (if it’s not already running)
  3. Scale the MocapDeviceCharacter so it roughly matches the size of your custom rig
  4. Manipulate your custom rig so it matches the pose of the MocapDeviceCharacter
  5. Use Orient constraints (Make sure that Maintain Offset is checked!) for the arms and head. Constrain the FK controllers for the arms and head to the bones on the MocapDeviceCharacter
  6. Parent Constrain the IK controllers for the feet to the feet on the MocapDeviceCharacter
  7. Parent Constrain the Hip (or root) controller to the hip bone of the MocapDeviceCharacter
  8. Play back the animation to make sure you did not miss any bones.

 

Thank you for reading this. If you want tutorials on other things, just let me know!

 

 

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