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Under Construction
What are WRAP, ZWRAP and WRAP4D?

Wrap, Zwrap and Weap4D are incredibly useful programs that are available from a company called Faceform – previously known as R3DS (Russian 3D Scan).

So what are the “wrap” programs for?

Well they’re for “topology transfer” – which means that you can make your human-like 3d model perfectly match an existing human-like 3d model’s polygon layout. So you fit a pre-existing topology (or “base mesh”) onto your own custom 3D scan or sculpt (ie. a custom character you’ve sculpted).

Why would you want to do that? Well, systems like Reallusion characters or MetaHuman characters might require you to give your human models an exact number of polygons and / or an exact ORDER of polygons (ie. so the program knows where the various body parts are). But aside from that, Wrap and ZWrap are very useful if you want to apply things like micro detail maps (for skin textures) onto your custom human model. So companies that make micro detail maps – like TexturingXYZ and 3D Scan Store – use the Wrap programs as part of their suggested pipelines.

So the question then is: what’s the difference between WRAP, ZWRAP and WRAP4D?

Well, Wrap and Zwrap are usually used together.

Wrap is a standalone program that is based on nodes. So you have to be ok with setting up node graphs in order to use it.

ZWrap is a plugin for ZBrush. So that means that the process is much more VISUAL and is easier for many people. 

Both Wrap and Zwrap work in basically the same way.

  • You tell the program what your base mesh is, which is your target topology. So you tell it what your custom mesh is, which is your source mesh.
  • You then choose the type of automatic wrapping it does. The easiest one is called the “fast wrap” method. 
  • Then you help the program by telling it which points on source mesh are the same as the target mesh. For example, the top of the lip. These are also called “point correspondences”, or “point pairs”.
  • You also tell the program how to transfer the texture (the skin color etc) from your source mesh to your target mesh. For example, you might want to exclude parts of the source texture graphic file, if it contains things that aren’t needed.

How do you buy WRAP and ZWRAP?

Wrap and ZWrap are available to buy from FACEFORM.com as a bundle together. And you can get them as either a perpetual license (ie. you own it forever) or as a yearly subscription. 

What about Wrap4D?

So what about Wrap4D? That’s a very different program. It’s for HMC performance processing. What does that mean? Well an HMC is a head mounted camera (two cameras actually, for 3D). So this is all about having an actor wear a helmet, which has a camera that records their face. Wrap4D takes the recordings and tracks it in 3D. You end up with a perfect animated 3D model of the facial performance.





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
CSV column headers for MetaHuman data (Face Animation Importer)

After you export your face animation from Unreal using the Python script, you will end up with a CSV.

If you open that CSV in Microsoft Excel, the column headings should precisely match the following:
A. CTRL_expressions_jawRight
B. CTRL_expressions_jawLeft
C. CTRL_expressions_jawOpen
D. CTRL_expressions_jawClenchR
E. CTRL_expressions_jawFwd
F. CTRL_expressions_jawBack
G. CTRL_expressions_jawClenchL
H. CTRL_expressions_neckMastoidContractL
I. CTRL_expressions_neckStretchL
J. CTRL_expressions_neckDigastricDown
K. CTRL_expressions_neckDigastricUp
L. CTRL_expressions_neckStretchR
M. CTRL_expressions_neckThroatExhale
N. CTRL_expressions_neckThroatInhale
O. CTRL_expressions_neckMastoidContractR
P. CTRL_expressions_neckThroatDown
Q. CTRL_expressions_neckThroatUp
R. CTRL_expressions_jawChinRaiseDR
S. CTRL_expressions_jawChinRaiseUR
T. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsBlowR
U. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPressR
V. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTogetherUL
W. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPressL
X. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsBlowL
Y. CTRL_expressions_mouthStretchLipsCloseR
Z. CTRL_expressions_mouthStretchLipsCloseL
AA. CTRL_expressions_tonguePress
AB. CTRL_expressions_tongueRollLeft
AC. CTRL_expressions_tongueRollRight
AD. CTRL_expressions_tongueRollUp
AE. CTRL_expressions_tongueRollDown
AF. CTRL_expressions_tongueTipLeft
AG. CTRL_expressions_tongueTipRight
AH. CTRL_expressions_tongueTipUp
AI. CTRL_expressions_tongueTipDown
AJ. CTRL_expressions_tongueLeft
AK. CTRL_expressions_tongueRight
AL. CTRL_expressions_tongueUp
AM. CTRL_expressions_tongueDown
AN. CTRL_expressions_tongueWide
AO. CTRL_expressions_tongueNarrow
AP. CTRL_expressions_tongueIn
AQ. CTRL_expressions_tongueOut
AR. CTRL_expressions_tongueRoll
AS. CTRL_expressions_mouthLeft
AT. CTRL_expressions_mouthRight
AU. CTRL_expressions_mouthUp
AV. CTRL_expressions_mouthDown
AW. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRaiseL
AX. CTRL_expressions_mouthSharpCornerPullL
AY. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerPullL
AZ. CTRL_expressions_mouthDimpleL
BA. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerDepressL
BB. CTRL_expressions_mouthStretchL
BC. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipDepressL
BD. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipDepressR
BE. CTRL_expressions_mouthStretchR
BF. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTowardsDL
BG. CTRL_expressions_mouthFunnelUR
BH. CTRL_expressions_neckSwallowPh1
BI. CTRL_expressions_neckSwallowPh2
BJ. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTowardsUL
BK. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipBiteR
BL. CTRL_expressions_mouthFunnelDR
BM. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTightenDL
BN. CTRL_expressions_mouthPressUL
BO. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTightenDR
BP. CTRL_expressions_mouthFunnelDL
BQ. CTRL_expressions_mouthCheekSuckL
BR. CTRL_expressions_mouthCheekBlowL
BS. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTightenUL
BT. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTightenUR
BU. CTRL_expressions_mouthPressDL
BV. CTRL_expressions_mouthFunnelUL
BW. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTowardsUR
BX. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPurseDR
BY. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperUpBiteL
BZ. CTRL_expressions_mouthPressDR
CA. CTRL_expressions_mouthPressUR
CB. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPurseDL
CC. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipBiteR
CD. CTRL_expressions_mouthCheekSuckR
CE. CTRL_expressions_mouthCheekBlowR
CF. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPurseUL
CG. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsTowardsDR
CH. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipBiteL
CI. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPurseUR
CJ. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerDepressR
CK. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRaiseR
CL. CTRL_expressions_mouthDimpleR
CM. CTRL_expressions_mouthSharpCornerPullR
CN. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerPullR
CO. CTRL_expressions_earUpR
CP. CTRL_expressions_earUpL
CQ. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilDilateR
CR. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilCompressR
CS. CTRL_expressions_noseWrinkleR
CT. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilDepressR
CU. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilDilateL
CV. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilCompressL
CW. CTRL_expressions_noseWrinkleL
CX. CTRL_expressions_noseNostrilDepressL
CY. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookLeftL
CZ. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookRightL
DA. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookUpL
DB. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookDownL
DC. CTRL_expressions_eyeBlinkL
DD. CTRL_expressions_eyeWidenL
DE. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookLeftR
DF. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookRightR
DG. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookUpR
DH. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookDownR
DI. CTRL_expressions_eyeBlinkR
DJ. CTRL_expressions_eyeWidenR
DK. CTRL_expressions_eyePupilWideR
DL. CTRL_expressions_eyePupilNarrowR
DM. CTRL_expressions_eyePupilWideL
DN. CTRL_expressions_eyePupilNarrowL
DO. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookLeftL
DP. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookRightL
DQ. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookUpL
DR. CTRL_expressions_eyeLookDownL
DS. CTRL_expressions_eyeCheekRaiseL
DT. CTRL_expressions_eyeSquintInnerL
DU. CTRL_expressions_eyeLidPressL
DV. CTRL_expressions_noseWrinkleUpperL
DW. CTRL_expressions_noseWrinkleUpperR
DX. CTRL_expressions_eyeSquintInnerR
DY. CTRL_expressions_eyeCheekRaiseR
DZ. CTRL_expressions_eyeLidPressR
EA. CTRL_expressions_browLateraIR
EB. CTRL_expressions_browLateralL
EC. CTRL_expressions_browDownR
ED. CTRL_expressions_browDownL
EE. CTRL_expressions_browRaiseOuterL
EF. CTRL_expressions_browRaiselnL
EG. CTRL_expressions_browRaiselnR
EH. CTRL_expressions_browRaiseOuterR
EI. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerWideL
EJ. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerNarrowL
EK. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerUpL
EL. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerDownL
EM. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerUpR
EN. TRL_expressions_mouthCornerDownR
EO. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerWideR
EP. CCTRL_expressions_mouthCornerNarrowR
EQ. CTRL_expressions_eyeFaceScrunchR
ER. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPushUL
ES. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPullUL
ET. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsThickUR
EU. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPushDL
EV. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPullDL
EW. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsThickUL
EX. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerRounderDR
EY. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerSharpenDR
EZ. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipShiftLeft
FA. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipShiftRight
FB. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipRollInR
FC. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipRollOutR
FD. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsThickDL
FE. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerRounderUR
FF. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerSharpenUR
FG. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipShiftLeft
FH. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipShiftRight
FI. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRollInR
FJ. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRollOutR
FK. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipRollInL
FL. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipRollOutL
FM. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerRounderDL
FN. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerSharpenDL
FO. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsThickDR
FP. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRollInL
FQ. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipRollOutL
FR. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerRounderUL
FS. CTRL_expressions_mouthCornerSharpenUL
FT. CTRL_expressions_noseNasolabialDeepenL
FU. CTRL_expressions_eyeFaceScrunchL
FV. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPushUR
FW. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPullUR
FX. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipTowardsTeethR
FY. CTRL_expressions_mouthLowerLipTowardsTeethL
FZ. CTRL_expressions_noseNasolabialDeepenR
GA. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPushDR
GB. CTRL_expressions_mouthLipsPullDR
GC. CTRL_L_mouth_lipsTowardsTeethU_1451
GD. CTRL_expressions_mouthUpperLipTowardsTeethR
GE. Discard because no blendshape
GF. Discard because no blendshape





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
face-animation-importer-pro

For help with the FACE ANIMATION IMPORTER PRO plugin, click here.





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to add iClone/Character Creator clothes to MetaHumans
NOTE: THESE INSTRUCTIONS ARE CURRENTLY BEING WRITTEN AND ARE NOT COMPLETE. PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO USE THEM YET, UNTIL THIS POST IS FINISHED.

 

You can now use iClone and Character Creator clothing on MetaHumans, with a workflow developed by StyleMarshal aka Bassline303 on the Reallusion forums.

The process has some important caveats.

  • This workflow currently works only for simple clothing and only with Unreal 5.3. In my experience, it crashes/doesn’t work with Unreal 5.4 Preview 1 – although some people have been able to get some clothing items to work. Hopefully the full release of Unreal 5.4 will be more stable, which should be sometime in late April 2024.
  • This process requires special ‘morph sliders‘ to be installed inside of Character Creator 4. These morph sliders are being made by StyleMarshal, using R3DS WRAP to re-wrap MetaHuman-sized body with the correct CC3+ topology. However, the bones are NOT CORRECT. So you cannot use the resulting characters for animation. They are ONLY suitable to use as clothing mannequins.

Okay so let’s go through the process. Again, these instructions are for Unreal 5.3 only.

 

STEP 1. ADD MORPH SLIDER TO CC

  1. The first thing to do is to get at least one of the special MetaHuman morph sliders from StyleMarshall. The files end in “.ccCustomSlider”.
  2. Make sure Character Creator 4 is closed, then move those files into this specific folder on your hard drive:
    C:\Users\Public\Documents\Reallusion\Reallusion Custom\Actor\Avatar Control
  3. Open up Character Creator, and it might take a while to open but just leave it to process.
  4. Once it opens, click the top CHARACTER MENU, and go LOAD NEUTRAL BASE > CC3+.

  5. IMPORTANT: Below the viewport, find the “Remove” button and click the little triangle on the side. Then in the menu that pops up, click “Restore Bind Pose”.
  6. In the Modify panel, click the Morphs tab.

  7. Click ‘MH‘ or MH2 or something like that. Then you’ll see slider/s for MetaHuman body codes (eg. m_tal_nrw).

  8. Move your chosen slider all the way to the right.

Okay your body should now look like the MetaHuman body base that you want. Don’t worry if the eyes look strange and the head isn’t right, this process is just about the body.

STEP 2. ADD CLOTHING

  1. Now add whatever piece of clothing you want. So I’m going to add just one of the tshirts that come with Character Creator.  Be wary of complex garments with high poly counts. They seem to crash Unreal.ONLY ONE CLOTHING ITEM WORKS FOR ME AS OF FRIDAY APRIL 12 2024. (The rest crash in Unreal at some point.)And that is the default t-shirt that comes with Character Creator 4, which you can find in the Content panel by clicking CLOTHING, then opening the SHIRTS folder, then the shirt is called “Basic T-shirts“:

  2. Adjust the fit of the clothing to the body in the standard way you do with all clothing in Character Creator. There are lots of tutorial on YouTube that cover that process.
  3. Okay once you’re happy with your clothing, go into the scene panel, and select all  the pieces of clothing:

  4. Go to FILE > EXPORT > OBJ > “Selected Item”.
  5. In the dialogue box, change the AXIS to “Z-up”, change MOTION to “Current”, and make sure only “Export Material” is ticked in the options. Then click “Export”.

  6. Name your file and save it.

You will end up with files like this:

STEP 3. SETUP UNREAL PROJECT

  1. Go to the Epic Games Launcher, library tab,
  2. Launch Unreal 5.3.2. (These instructions are ONLY for Unreal 5.3.2)
  3. Create a new project with the FILM & TV template. (Raytracing and starter content are optional.)
  4. When the Unreal project loads, go to EDIT > PLUGINS.
  5. Search for “chaos
  6. Enable “CHAOS CLOTH ASSET”. It will prompt you that they are experimental, and just agree to that. It will also say to restart but don’t do that yet.
  7. Enable “CHAOS CLOTH ASSET EDITOR”. Again, agree to the prompt about it being experimental, and DON’T restart.
  8. Close the plugins window.

STEP 4. CREATE CUSTOM METAHUMAN (IMPORTANT)

Now we need to add a MetaHuman to the project, but it needs to have all of its arms and legs visible, so we need to make a custom MetaHuman. The MetaHuman must have ‘none’ chosen for the Top and Bottoms options for clothing, as described below.

  1. In a web browser, go to the MetaHuman Creator website: https://metahuman.unrealengine.com/mhc
  2. Change the dropdown to “Unreal 5.3“.
  3. Create a MetaHuman with the same body dimensions that you chose for the slider in Character Creator.
    (eg. If you used the “m_tal_nrw” slider, for example, you need to make sure that the custom MetaHuman is male, and under body proportions you make it tall and normal weight.)
  4. Click on Tops, and choose none.
  5. Click Bottoms, and choose none.
  6. Click shoes, and choose flip flops.
  7. Name your character, and I’d suggest you add “No Clothes” at the end of its name.
  8. Logout from the MetaHuman Creator website.

STEP 5. ADD CUSTOM METAHUMAN TO UNREAL PROJECT

  1. Back in Unreal, click the “Quick Add” button on the top ribbon, then open Quixel Bridge.
  2. Sign in, then click MetaHumans, then My MetaHumans.
  3. Click the tile for your custom MetaHuman with no clothes.
  4. Choose the highest quality, and click to download it.
  5. Click the “ADD” to add it to the project.
  6. Close the Quixel Bridge window.
  7. Drag the MetaHuman blueprint into your scene, and click to enable the missing plugins. Then click to restart the engine.
  8. Once it restarts, in the Outliner click to edit your MetaHuman’s blueprint.
  9. In the Components panel, click LOD Sync.
  10. In the details panel, change the number of LODS to 1, and the forced LOD to 0. (This is important, otherwise the clothing item will act strangely later. It seems to need the resolution of the LOD 0 mesh to work properly.)
  11. Click COMPILE, then SAVE, and minimize the MetaHuman editor window.
  12. Set your engine’s scalability settings to EPIC or CINEMATIC, otherwise the clothing won’t drape properly on your MetaHuman in later steps.

STEP 6. IMPORT CLOTHING

  1. In the Content Browser, create a new folder called “Clothing” and open it.
  2. Create a new folder with the name of your clothing item, and open it.
  3. Right-click and choose “Import to Game”.
  4. Find the OBJ you exported from Character Creator, and open it.
  5. In the “Interchance Pipeline Configuration (Import Content)” dialogue box, click the button at the top right to “RESET SELECTED PIPELINE“. Then click import.

  6. Check to make sure you have ended up with at least one Static Mesh, plus at least one Material and some Textures.
  7. It’s best practice to rename your Static Mesh with “SM_” at the start and “_CC” at the end (eg. “SM_OrangeSweater_CC“), but this is optional.

STEP 7. CREATE CLOTH ASSET

  1. In the Content Browser, right-click and go PHYSICS > ClothAsset
  2. Rename the new asset as “CA_” and then the name of your clothing item. (eg. CA_OrangeSweater)
  3. Double click to open your Cloth Asset.
  4. Click “CREATE NEW DATAFLOW“.

  5. Choose where to save the Dataflow, and click SAVE.

STEP 8. ADD YOUR CLOTHING ITEM TO THE CLOTH ASSET

  1. In the editor that appears, right-click on the Dataflow Graph and type “Static“, then click “StaticMeshImport” to add that node.

  2. Now, with the new “StaticMeshImport” node selected, to the right under ‘Static Mesh Import’ change the “Static Mesh” dropdown your imported clothing item’s static mesh.
  3. Drag the output of the StaticMeshImport” node to the right and let go, then type ‘terminal’, and click “ClothAssetTerminal” to add that node.

  4. Press CTRL-ALT-S to save all, in case Unreal crashes in the next step.
  5. IMPORTANT: DO NOT connect the “StaticMeshImport” to the “ClothAssetTerminal“. This can often cause Unreal to crash in later steps.  Just leave them as UNCONNECTED nodes:

 

STEP 9. TRANSFER SKIN WEIGHTS

  1. Press CTRL-ALT-S to save all, because Unreal often crashes (for me) in the next step – depending on whether it ‘likes’ your clothing item or not (I’m not sure what the problem is – its not purely triangle count in my experience).
  2. In the Dataflow Graph, right-click and type “transfer“. Click ‘TransferSkinWeights‘ to add that node:
  3. The nodes should look like this. Again, DO NOT connect the TransferSkinWeights node to the ClothAssetTerminal node.
  4. Click on the new “TransferSkinWeights” node. This is important, because sometimes Unreal doesn’t show the correct options unless you do this.
  5. In the top left, change the SOURCE MESH to you full MetaHuman body, with arms and leg skin visible and with skin the correct color (NOT the grayscale body preview):
  6. Then click to ACCEPT:
  7. If you’re lucky, it will work. If you’re unlucky, Unreal will crash:

STEP 10. Connect nodes

  • Now connect the TransferSkinWeightsNode to the ClothAssetTerminal node.
  • Click in the editor window’s viewport, and press F to zoom into your garment.
  • You’ll see a preview, and this will let you know if the mesh is working or not. If you see problems like the following images, you might need to try a different item of clothing. Many items work well – but it’s unclear right now what the “X factor” is that makes them work vs not work.

     

STEP 11. Add preview animation and problem solve

  • Click on the Preview Scene Settings tab
  • Change the “Skeletal Mesh Asset” to your full MetaHuman body, with arms and legs visible (NOT the preview mesh!)
  • Change the “Animation Asset” dropdown to an animation that tests the movements. (If you don’t have one, you can download this one and add it to your project.)

STEP 12. HIDE BODY PARTS

You will of course need to now HIDE BODY PARTS of the MetaHuman, just like with any other clothing item for MetaHumans – to prevent the skin from “poking through”.

 





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to fix “separated panels” in Marvelous Designer
HOW TOs > MARVELOUS DESIGNER

Sometimes when you export a garment from Marvelous Designer, the stitch lines create visible “spaces” in the clothing item.

To fix this, you need to adjust the stitches.

  • In Marvelous Designer, go to the 2D Pattern Window
  • At the top of the window, click the sewing machine icon, then click “EDIT SEWING”
  • Click drag across your garment, to select all the problematic sewing lines
  • In the Property Editor, change INTENSITY to 0 and THICKNESS to 0

And that’s it! Now when you export the garment, it will no longer have ‘separation’ at the sewing lines.

 





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to fix “perfect” clothing lines (using Maya) after exporting from Marvelous Designer
HOW TOs > MARVELOUS DESIGNER

The edges of clothing items can be “too perfect” when exported from Marvelous Designer, like the bottom edges of this t-shirt:

To solve this, you can use Maya’s built-in sculpt tools. Just use the “grab” tool – try to avoid the ‘smooth’ tool as it will create obvious problems with the mesh.

Here’s how to use the GRAB tool:

  • Make sure you are in MODELLING mode
  • Go to the MESH TOOLS > SCULPTING TOOLS then click the top of the menu that appears, so it detaches
  • You now can easily access the sculpting tools
  • Click the OPTIONS button next to “GRAB TOOL”
  • Change the size to approximately 6
  • Click on the mesh you want to adjust, then click-drag on areas to pull them

 

 

 





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to fix “topstitch” problems when exporting from Marvelous Designer
HOW TOs > MARVELOUS DESIGNER

Many garments that have ‘topstitches‘ (such as denim jeans and shoes) will often end up having a massive amount of separate meshes and very very high polygon counts when you export them.

  

The solution is to change the topstitches from 3D models to textures. (That is, they simply become part of the texture images that you export from Marvelous Designer – rather than being actual 3D meshes with polygons.)

To do that, you need to change all “topstitch” items in your scene from OBJ format to TEXTURE.

To do that:

  • In the panel that has your list of fabrics, click the dropdown and change to TOPSTITCH

  • Click “delete unused
  • Go through each item in the list, and change the TYPE dropdown to TEXTURE (you do NOT want it on “obj”)

Now you can export as normal:
– Go FILE > EXPORT > FBX

 

Then the result, in your DCC of choice, will have the topstitches baked into the textures:





LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
“How To” Guides: Windows




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
Add right-click ‘convert to Webp’
HOW TOs > WINDOWS

How do you add a windows “convert to WebP” option when you right-click in Windows Explorer?

One way is to download and install the free FILE CONVERTER program for Windows.

  • Go to the official site file-converter.io
  • Click to download the program
  • It will download a file called something like “FileConverter-2.0.2-x64-setup.msi”
  • Double click the MSI file to start installation
  • Follow the simple instructions to complete installation
  • In Windows Explorer, a new option will appear when you right-click on a file:
  • Hover over “File Converter”, and you’ll see a list of files to convert your image file to:

    Including GIF, PNG, WEBP, JPG, ICO and PDF.




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
What the “Substance” plug-in for Maya does
HOW TOs > SUBSTANCE 3D PAINTER

What is the “Substanceplugin for Maya and what can it actually do?

What is it?

It’s a free plugin for Maya 2024, 2023, 2022, 2021 and 2020.

It lets you:

  • import Substance materials – in “.sbar” format – from:
  • apply those materials to objects in your scene
  • export the textures (once applied to your objects) as standard ‘image maps(eg. myobject_basecolor.png)

How do I get it?

You can download it here.

The official help files website is here: https://helpx.adobe.com/substance-3d-integrations/3d-applications/maya/substance-in-maya-overview.html

The official release notes can be found here. (Useful to know what has recently changed or been fixed).

How do I install it?

Just download the file and double click, then it will walk you through the installation.

However, even once you install the plugin, it does not automatically load in MayaYou need to do this:

  • Open Maya, create a new scene
  • Go to WINDOWS > SETTINGS/PREFERENCES > PLUG-IN MANAGER
  • In the search bar, type “substance
  • Then at the top next to APPLY TO ALL click “loaded” and “auto load
  • Click CLOSE

What are the buttons the shelf?

You should now have a new shelf in Maya called ‘Substance‘.

The buttons are:

Substance Settings
(opens the Substance settings menu)
Batch Import
(imports and creates the selected Substance files)
Batch Bake to Disk
(bake selected Substance nodes to a folder)
Upgrade Old Nodes
(convert all old plugin nodes to new nodes)
Apply Workflow to Maps
(apply Substance workflows to image maps)
Open Content
(open sample ‘sbsars’ in content browser)
Open Substance 3D Assets
(Open the paid ‘Substance 3D Assets’ website in a browser)
https://substance3d.adobe.com/assets/
Open ‘Substance Share’
(Open the free community assets website in a browser)
https://substance3d.adobe.com/community-assets/
Open Documentation: Open the ‘Substance in Maya‘ documentation in a browser
https://helpx.adobe.com/substance-3d-integrations/3d-applications/maya.html
About Substance in Maya: Display ‘About’ window

 

Free materials that come with the plugin

If you click the Open Content button you’ll see a list of free included materials:

These “.sbsar” files are on your hard drive: C:\Program Files\Allegorithmic\Adobe Substance 3D for Maya\2024\sbsars

  • bark_pine.sbsar
  • bricks_bond_variations.sbsar
  • carbon_fiber_twill_weave.sbsar
  • cardboard_torn.sbsar
  • chrome_plated_rusty.sbsar
  • concrete_damp_wall.sbsar
  • concrete_layers_stacked.sbsar
  • fabric_jeans.sbsar
  • golf_bunker_sand.sbsar
  • leather_fine.sbsar
  • metal_grinded.sbsar
  • parquet_american_chestnut.sbsar
  • plastic_vinyl_glossy.sbsar
  • pounded_asphalt.sbsar
  • powdery_snow_marks.sbsar
  • rotten_wood.sbsar
  • rust_corrosion_drip.sbsar
  • rusted_painted_metal.sbsar
  • scrapped_paint.sbsar
  • slate_tiles_with_moss.sbsar
  • tarmac.sbsar
  • wood_fence_painted.sbsar

How do I actually apply an .sbsar to something??

To apply a Substance material to a mesh, you first IMPORT the “.sbar” and then construct the Material in Hypershade.

To do that:

  1. Go to WINDOWS > RENDERING EDITORS > HYPERSHADE
  2. Above the graph, click the icon with the ‘diamonds‘ to clear the graph
  3. Right-click and hold in the GRAPH, then swipe upwards and click CREATE NODE:
  4. In the dialogue box that appears, type “subst” in the text field, then click SUBSTANCE NODE
  5. The following will appear, and the ‘substancenode’ node will be selected:
  6. In the Property Editor, click the browse file icon next to ‘Load Substance’:
  7. In the file explorer that pops up, choose an “.sbsbar” file
  8. In the Property Editor, click the WIDTH drop-down and change the resolution to something like 4096 (for cinematic-quality textures)
  9. Scroll down, and under WORKFLOWS click the workflow on the left that you’d like to use (Standard Surface, Arnold, Renderman, Vray Next, Redshit, Maxwell, Vray 6). If you don’t know, just choose ‘Standard Surface’. Then click ‘Create Network’.
  10. The system will pause for a few seconds, then various nodes will appear in the graph, and a preview of the material will appear in the “Texture Viewer”.
  11. Click to select the tile of the material in the ‘MATERIALS’ tab of Hypershade:
  12. Change the name of the material in the Property Editor.
  13. Now your scene, right-click on the mesh you want to apply the material to, and choose ‘Assign Existing Material‘, then the material you just named:
  14. Make sure the ‘Texturing’ option is enabled in the Viewport, and you’ll see your material applied:

    But the tiling of the texture will be too large.
  15. In HYPERSHADE, click the ‘place’ node (the first node) in your material
  16. In the Property Editor you will now be able to adjust the ‘Repeat UV’ value to adjust the tiling. Increase it to maybe 3.
  17. You will see that the tiling of the material in the viewport improves:




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Under Construction
“How To” Guides: Substance 3D Painter




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
New UE5.4 process for Marvelous Designer export to Unreal, then realtime cloth simulation

I haven’t gotten this to work fully yet (as of Thursday March 21 2024, 8:45am) but here is what is working so far:

 

  1. Make your clothing item in Marvelous Designer:
    1. Make an Avatar in Marvelous Designer that matches your MetaHuman body type
    2. Design a garment and add it to your Avatar, and simulate (as normal) to test it
    3. Make sure you make different fabrics, and set their physical properties (Unreal will use them in its simulation)
  2. When you’re happy with the garment, export a USD from Marvelous Designer.
    • Go FILE > EXPORT > USD
    • Save the file in a new folder:
    • In the popup that appears,  disable the “Select All Avatars” checkbox
    • Make sure to select CM as the scale

    • Click OK
    • It might take a few minutes to export

  3. Create a new Unreal project with Unreal 5.4.0
    1. Open the EPIC LAUNCHER, and install Unreal 5.4.0 (Preview 1)
    2. Create a new Unreal project, with the FILM AND TV template
  4. Add your MetaHuman:
    1. Go to the built-in Quixel Bridge in Unreal
    2. Download the MetaHuman that your garment uses
    3. ADD it to your project
    4. Click to enable any plugins it tells you do, and restart Unreal when needed
    5. Drag your MetaHuman to your level, and zero-out the location and rotation
  5. Enable the Chaos Cloth plugins:
    1. Go to EDIT > PLUGINS.
    2. Search for “cloth”, and enable the following plugins then restart:
      Chaos Cloth
      Chaos Cloth Asset
      Chaos Cloth Asset Editor
      Chaos Cloth Editor
      Chaos Cloth Generator


  6. Create your “Cloth Asset” file:
    1. Once Unreal restarts, make a new folder in the content browser called “test“, and open it
    2. Right-click in the new folder, and go PHYSICS>CLOTH ASSET

    3. Name the new ‘Cloth Asset‘ file as “TestGarment01
    4. Press CTRL-SHIFT-S to save your project and the new ‘Cloth Asset’ file.
    5. Double click the ‘Cloth Asset‘ file

    6. Zoom in on the DATAFLOW graph  so you can see the first nodes, and click the USDImport node.

    7. On the right side, click the “…” icon to browse for USD file.

    8. When it opens, you’ll get errors saying there’s no LOD 0. I’m not sure how to solve that right now. I’ve posted on the official Unreal forum here.

    9. You can try to set the Skeleton and the Physics asset, like this, but it doesn’t seem to do anything:

    10. You can also try clicking the TRANSFER SKIN WEIGHTS node and setting details, but it doesn’t work either:



  7. For now, the bottom line is that it seems to import the USD file okay, but the viewports stay blank – and it clearly can’t “see” the garment:

  8. Oddly, the garment IS imported. If you go into the Content Browser, you’ll see that a full mesh – with proper materials added – has been imported. So at least it seems that USD is the fastest current way to import properly textured/materialed Marvelous Designer garments into Unreal (with automatic texture/material setup).

 

 





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GDC 2024: The new 5.4 clothing pipeline with MetaHumans and Marvelous Designer

WEDNESDAY MARCH 20, 2024

 

Epic today revealed (at their MetaHumans and Marvelous Designer session) 4 massive breakthroughs that will arrive on April 20 2024 with the full release of 5.4 (they are NOT in the preview 1):

  1. You will be able to transfer garments directly from Marvelous Designer to Unreal via USD format, and they will SIMULATE IN REALTIME. (You just need to add a few settings but basically it’s automatic.) They will also KEEP the fabric simulation setup you chose in Marvelous. !?!?!?!?!
  2. There is a new ‘kinematic collider‘ in Unreal 5.4 that solves the huge issues we currently have with clothing penetratic skin etc
  3. You will now be able to COPY SKIN WEIGHTS INSIDE UNREAL! using the ‘transfer skin weights’ node in the Cloth Panel Editor
  4. The new simulation improvements include accurate self-collision simulation

 

I found the presentation about Marvelous Designer simulation features in UE5.4 amazing but a little difficult to follow just because it was so dense and full of wonderful detail. 🙂 So I wrote out what Epic’s Jared Monsen said then I tried to separate it into parts and steps (below) – to make it easier to follow. I’m sure, closer to UE5.4’s release on April 24, we will get proper documentation! But for now, this might help some folks like me who are keen to understand but found it all too a little overwhelming.

You can find the start of this part of the video stream here. Follow along by reading my ‘split into parts and steps‘ transcript below….

 

(This presentation is (C)2024 EPIC GAMES and the text is presented here only for educational purposes and to help the community, including hard of hearing and EAASL folks!)

 

PART 1: OVERVIEW OF THE PROCESS

It really is awesome to be able to take clothing assets from high end packages like Clo and Marvelous Designer, where clothing panels and parameters translate directly into the Engine.

With such an easy integrated workflow, it’s clear to see it’s a “win win” for everybody here.

And this new process, which will be in Beta in 5.4, allows you to easily see the real-time representation of your “sim” set up quickly.

Once in the Engine, you have the option to use those results in Unreal or send them on to be used in UEFN.

 

THE FOUR STEPS

  • STEP 1. MAKE THE GARMENT
    • At Epic, we use Marvelous Designer to create the costume for Rue, our captain on “Talisman”.
    • Here you can see we used one of our stock MetaHuman bodies from “MetaHuman Creator” to construct the costume.
    • You can begin your creation process by constructing your clothing in Marvelous Designer like we did.
    • When working in Marvelous Designer, your fabric selections and simulation settings matter. If you choose to transfer those simulation properties during the USD process, we take into account those attributes and they will affect the simulation behavior in Unreal.
  • STEP 2. USD EXPORT
    • Once you’re finished in Marvelous Designer, USD export is an easy way to get your clothing assets out of Marvelous Designer and straight into the Unreal Engine.
  • STEP 3. IMPORT INTO UNREAL
    • Once you’ve imported your clothing assets into Unreal, we can now start setting up the “cloth panel graph”.
  • STEP 4. CLOTH PANEL GRAPH
    • You can choose a workflow that ranges anywhere from fully automated to a completely hand-tweaked This flexibility allows you to get something up simulating faster, as well as having the option to customize the areas that you feel are necessary.
  • STEP 5. (OPTIONAL) MIGRATE TO UEFN
    • At any point in time the “cloth asset” can then be used in Unreal, or it can be migrated to be used in your UEFN
  • STEP 6. ADD TO CHARACTER
    • In order to get your cloth onto your character, you simply add a “Chaos ClothComponent to your character’s Blueprint and choose the corresponding “Cloth Asset” you want to use.

 

PART 2: 5.4 IMPROVEMENTS IN WORKFLOW

 

AUTOGENERATED GRAPH: A new feature we’ve added is an auto generated graph that’s built when you first create a “cloth asset node”. This graph helps you get going fast and saves you time getting started. This includes the USD import node, some core nodes for setting up the simulation, value transfers from Marvelous Designer (if selected), a physics asset node, and parameters set to good initial values.

 

USD IMPORT HAS TWO MESHES: The USD import brings in both a simulation mesh and a render mesh for you to immediately use. And just to be clear by what I mean by that:

  • the simulation mesh or “sim mesh” is a lower resolution mesh that’s actually simulated but not rendered.
  • The render mesh is a high resolution mesh that you actually see. The render mesh is driven by the “sim mesh”, and provides a higher detailed model -without having to pay the computation price of a higher resolution symmetry.

 

AUTO-SKINNING AND AUTO-LOADING: We’ve also added some really great nodes for you to use in your graph, like auto skinning and auto loading to speed up the creation process. And this feature streamlines the cloth setup, allowing you to arrive at a working simulation much faster and more easily.

 

FLEXIBLE PIPELINE: One of the best features of the clothing pipeline though is not only do we provide automated path for many aspects of the pipe, but we also allow you to customize basically every part of that pipeline to suit your needs.

For Talisman, we decided we wanted to have the best of both worlds. In this project, we felt there were assets that we wanted our ours to customize to fit our needs.

For example, we created our own customized higher resolution render mesh for the captain’s costume. The clothing graph allows us to swap out the render mesh for our own version in a really easy way.   We also decided to use some of our artist-tuned skin weighting for LOD 0. And we used a remesh node to auto generate lower resolution “sim meshes” for the lower LOD’s.  In addition, we dialed in the simulation solver settings as well as other nodes to meet the needs of our project.

 

KINEMATIC COLLIDER: And another customization, customization we use is a really cool new feature which uses a “Kinematic Collider”.

This is a deformable collider mesh that moves with the skinned asset.  This allows more accurate collisions at a relatively inexpensive price.

The Kinematic Collider is really easy to set up in the graph and solves a lot of problems that come from just using Capsules.

The ability for us to customize the graph in areas that we wanted to, but also take advantage of the automated processes where we could, saved us time while also giving us creative freedom and control over the end results.

With these features you can decide what pipeline best works for your needs – anything from again the fully automated to the totally customizable.

 

PART 3: THE CLOTHING PANEL EDITOR

Let’s take a closer look at the clothing panel editor.

The clothing panel editor was released in UE5.3 and introduced a new way of authoring cloth.

The clothing panel editor is where all your clothing graph work is done.

There are 4 main sections to the editor:

  • In the top left is the PANEL VIEWER, where you can see 2D and 3D representations of your asset, make selections and paint weight maps. There have been a lot of tool improvements made here for easier painting and selection, and we’ll continue to refine tools and processes there.
  • In the middle of the editor is the SIMULATION VIEWER. Here you can view the actual simulation behavior, play animations, use different meshes to view your cloth on and see the visual debug tools.
  • On the far right is the panel for simulation details, preview scene settings, and the simulation visualization tools. The Preview Settings tab allows you to set skeletal meshes and animations to view your clothing with. And the details panel has all the usual settings that pertain to the clothing asset. The visualization panel has a lot of great features like seeing only the simulation meshes, displaying collisions, viewing weight maps, and simulations to statistics, just to name a few.
  • Last but not least is the data flow graph – and this is where you set up your graph and access the nodes to create different cloth features. It has a very familiar field similar to setting up and wiring nodes like blueprints.

Once you’re done setting up the graph in the panel editor, you’re now ready to use your cloth asset and UE or export to UEFN.

But before we do that, let’s take a look at some nodes that might be of particular interest to you.

 

PART 4: USEFUL NODES IN THE CLOTHING PANEL EDITOR

 

NEW TRANSFER SKIN WEIGHTS NODE

The new Transfer Skin Weights node is a new tool that we’ve added to the Unreal toolbox for you to use.  This node allows you to take an imported static mesh or asset that came from the USD import and copy weights from a user defined skeleton mesh to the chosen mesh.

Since the cloth solver needs weights in order to work correctly, this is a great solution that skips the need for you to rig and await your clothing mesh in an external DCC.

In most cases, all you’ll need is a rigged body – most likely your character or simplified version of it – and then your static mesh as inputs.

The output of this node will give you a skinned version of the static mesh, now ready to use for your clothing asset.

 

Two more things to note about the ‘Transfer Skin Weights’ node:

  • INPAINT WEIGHT ALGORITHM: The algorithm we use in this node is different from what you might find in some DC packages. The node provides an option for you to use the “Closest Point On Surface” method if you wish, but the “Inpaint Weight” method is something that’s quite different. This algorithm allows us to significantly better handle loose clothing – as well as armpits and other tight areas on the mesh. And this method is a “robust, non data-driven mesh algorithm”; which essentially means it’s it will work on any given mesh.
  • You could also use the skin transfer node even if you don’t want to simulate your clothing. You can simply use this node in the graph without any simulation nodes and the end result will be the rigged version moving with your character. (And we use this technique for LOD 2 on our “Talisman” project.)

 

THE REMESH NODE

The “remesh” node allows for auto generation of lower resolution meshes, based on a target percentage.

You can choose to remesh both the “render mesh” and “simulation mesh” – or just one, or the other.

For creating LODs in “Talisman” and we took a hybrid approach:

  • We hand-created our “render mesh” LODs, but we used the “remesh nodes” to auto reduce the “simulation meshes”.
  • We decided to keep the same “render mesh” for both LOD 0 and LOD 1, as we felt the lower resolution wrapped better to the “simulation mesh”.
  • And here you can see the numbers that we targeted for both the simulation and render mesh. Depending on your project needs and complexity, these numbers will be different for you.

 

PART 5: THE “MIGRATE TOOL” FOR GETTING CLOTH INTO UEFN

Now that you have the cloth asset all set up, getting your cloth asset into UEFN is really straightforward.

At any point in time in your process you can use the “migrate tool” to to migrate your cloth into UEFN.

When migrating your cloth, the only essential assets you need to migrate are:

  • the “clothing asset” itself,
  • and the physics asset, if you’ve chosen to use one.

Materials and textures are also available for you to migrate, but you may or may not need them depending on your project needs, and if this is the first time you’ve migrated the asset into your project.

The “clothing asset” bundles up almost everything you need into one asset, which makes the process really simple when exporting to UEFN.

 

REAL-TIME SIMULATION

Rue’s jacket is 100% simulated using self-collision and a “kinematic Collider”.

Real time simulation is not an easy task, and it’s always a ‘give and take’ relationship when it comes to performance and quality.

Our goal is to make real time simulation more widely usable and performance friendly.

 

PERFORMANCE & FRAME RATES

You can expect one to one performance and behavior between Unreal and UEFN.  Which is really cool.

  • For Talisman, our goal was 30 frames a second on a high end machine, going for a high end quality simulation in a close up scenario.
  • Our lower LOD simulation frame rates come in anywhere from about 50 to 60 frames a second, after tuning the graph for those specific LODs. (Total simulated vertices, self collisions and solver iterations being the biggest factors for performance.)

 

PART 6: RECAP & AVAILABILITY

Our clothing tool gives you a new option as a developer. Whatever your budget is, real time simulated clothing is now a much more realistic option for you to use in your project.

Our engineers and artists have been on the ground level using the system and we’re really excited to continue to push and develop it on all fronts.

  • You now have the ability to import your clothing creations from high end software packages like Clo and Marvelous Designer.
  • The USD import process is what allows you to to bring those clothing assets and to be translated into software packages into Unreal.
  • You can utilize both automated and custom setups in your “cloth asset graph”.
  • You can use a cloth asset in Unreal or easily migrate it into UEFN.
  • And when this comes out in UEFN as early access it will be released with documentation to help you get the best results from your assets and both Unreal and Marvelous Designer.

The Clo and Marvelous Designer functionality will also be releasing at the same time UE5.4 does. So at 5.4 launch everything is unlocked and ready for you to use.

 

We’d like to thank Clo for their work and their collaboration as we worked on implementing the USD format, and collaborating with the clothing and fashion industry and a leading company like Clo is really a wonderful opportunity.

We’re really excited to see what the community creates and leverages when creating their own experiences.

 

(This presentation is (C)2024 EPIC GAMES and the text is presented here only for educational purposes and to help the community, including hard of hearing and EAASL folks!)





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Free Garments Included with Marvelous Designer 12
HOW TOs > MARVELOUS DESIGNER

What free clothing items come with Marvelous Designer 12?

(This page lists the ones that are in the “Garment Library” inside the application, but also remember you can download free items from the CLO ASSET STORE by clicking ‘store’ then only enabling the ‘free’ option.)

 

FREE MALE ITEMS

  • Tshirt.zpac
  • Pants.zpac
  • jeans.zpac
  • Male_CargoShorts.zpac
  • Male_Hoody.zpac
  • Male_JerseyPants.zpac
  • Male_PaddedJacket.zpac

FREE FEMALE ITEMS

  • Female_HalterNeckDress
  • Female_ShirringDress
  • Female_Skirt1
  • Female_Skirt2
  • Female_Garments1_Hana
  • Female_Garments2_Hana
  • Female_Garments3_Hana

 

 

MODULAR CONFIGURATOR

As well as the free garments, the Modular Configurator tool (in the WINDOW menu) has male and female versions of the following:

  • Jackets
  • Polos
  • Shirts
  • T-Shirts
  • Trench Coats




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
“How To” Guides: Marvelous Designer




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to add Jewelery or Props to a MetaHuman (with Physics) in Unreal Engine 5
HOW TOs > UNREAL

If you have a MetaHuman in Unreal Engine 5, how do you add jewelry or some other prop (like a police shield) to their clothing?

Well, check out this awesome tutorial from Fractured Fantasy, which shows you how to do just that! Here’s the overall process:

  • Model the item in your DCC of choice (in the tutorial, he uses Blender to make a necklace)
  • Add bones in your DCC
  • Import into Unreal
  • Add physics
  • Ta-daaaaa! You’re done!

 





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Under Construction
“How To” Guides: Unreal




LATEST UPDATES






Under Construction
How to export FACE animation from a MetaHuman source file in Maya to Unreal
HOW TOs > MAYA

If you’ve animated a MetaHuman source rig in Maya, how do you transfer that animation (the FACE animation of it – see body here) to Unreal and apply it to a MetaHuman?

The following process assumes you’ve already imported a Maya MetaHuman source rig (instructions here) and animated the face using the facial GUI.

So as of February 2024 (Maya 2024 and Unreal 5.3.2), here’s the process:

  1. EXPORT FACE ANIMATION:
    1. Make sure your scene length is only as long as the animation – to avoid unnecessary processing time later.
    2. Take a note of your Maya scene’s FPS – you’ll need to match that later in Unreal.
    3. Click on “FacialControls” then right-click and choose “Select Set Members
    4. Open the FILE menu and click the BOX next to ‘Export Selection…’
    5. In the dialogue box, under GENERAL OPTIONS, change the File type dropdown to “FBX export” then click “Export Selection
    6. In the next dialogue box, under FILE TYPE SPECIFIC OPTIONS, change the Current Preset dropdown to “Autodesk Media & Entertainment
    7. Under ANIMATION, enable the “Animation” checkbox
    8. Under BAKE ANIMATION, enable the “Bake Animation” checkbox
    9. Make sure that the Bake Animation in and out frames are the full length of your timeline
    10. Under CONNECTIONS, disable the “Input Connections” checkbox
    11. Name your FBX (eg. ‘StretchAnimation_MayaMHface_forUnreal‘)
    12. Click “Export Selection”

  2. CHECK THE OUTPUT FBX:
    1. Go to the START menu and open a fresh MAYA session
    2. Go to FILE > IMPORT… and find the FBX of the body animation and open it
    3. In the Viewport, zoom out so you can see the skeleton
    4. Press play on the timeline to check that it works
    5. If it doesn’t, it might be because of a persistent bug in Maya! To fix that, QUIT OUT OF MAYA and open Maya again. And try the process again of importing it and see if it works.
  3. SETUP A SEQUENCE IN UNREAL:
    If you don’t already have a Sequence with a MetaHuman, you’ll need to set one up.

    1. Open Unreal Engine and import a MetaHuman (via Quixel Bridge)
    2. Add the MetaHuman to your scene, and zero out its transform (ie. the location, rotation, scale in the details panel)
    3. In the Outliner, click the floor object (if you have one), and zero out its transform as well (it defaults to a height of 20 for some reason)
    4. Now in the content browser, create a folder for SEQUENCES and create a new Sequence in it (right-click and go CINEMATICS > LEVEL SEQUENCE)
    5. Open the Sequence, and change the FPS to match your Maya scene earlier
    6. Go to the first frame (0000), drag the Blueprint from the Outliner into the Sequence
    7. In the Sequence, under FACE, delete the “MetaHuman_ControlRig” layer
  4. IMPORT THE FACE ANIMATION:
    1. On frame 0000right-click on “Face_ControlBoard_CtrlRig”, choose “Import Control Rig FBX” and open your facial animation FBX
    2. Under STRING MATCHING OPTIONS, twirl down the 0 and change “Find” to your namespace in Maya (INCLUDING the colon)
    3. Click the “Control Mapping Presets” dropdown and choose “Metahuman Control Mappings”, then click IMPORT 
    4. You will need to adjust BOTH the Sequence ‘End Time‘ and ‘Selection End‘ to match the length of the clip you imported – otherwise it won’t fully play.




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Under Construction
How to export BODY animation from a MetaHuman source file in Maya to Unreal
HOW TOs > MAYA

If you’ve animated a MetaHuman source rig in Maya, how do you transfer that animation (the BODY animation of it; for FACE the process is here) to Unreal and apply it to a MetaHuman?

The following process assumes you’ve already imported a Maya MetaHuman source rig (instructions here) and animated it (optionally, by applying a HumanIK (HIK) rig – instructions here).

So as of February 2024 (Maya 2024 and Unreal 5.3.2), here’s the process:

  1. CHECK FOR KEYFRAMES:
    1. In the Maya Outliner, twirl down the object “root_drv”.
    2. Click on various items within it, and check that there keyframes on the timeline. If not, you need to first bake your animation to the skeleton.
  2. EXPORT BODY ANIMATION:
    1. Make sure your scene length is only as long as the animation – to avoid unnecessary processing time later.
    2. Take a note of your Maya scene’s FPS – you’ll need to match that later in Unreal.
    3. Click on “Body_joints”, then right-click and choose “Select Set Members
    4. Open the FILE menu and click the BOX next to ‘Export Selection…’
    5. In the dialogue box, under GENERAL OPTIONS, change the File type dropdown to “FBX export” then click “Export Selection
    6. In the next dialogue box, under FILE TYPE SPECIFIC OPTIONS, change the Current Preset dropdown to “Autodesk Media & Entertainment
    7. Under ANIMATION, enable the “Animation” checkbox
    8. Under BAKE ANIMATION, enable the “Bake Animation” checkbox
    9. Make sure that the Bake Animation in and out frames are the full length of your timeline
    10. Under CONNECTIONS, disable the “Input Connections” checkbox
    11. Name your FBX, including the MetaHuman body code (eg. ‘StretchAnimation_MayaMH_m_med_nrw_forUnreal‘)
    12. Click “Export Selection”

  3. CHECK THE OUTPUT FBX:
    1. Go to the START menu and open a fresh MAYA session
    2. Go to FILE > IMPORT… and find the FBX of the body animation and open it
    3. In the Outlinerclick on the “DHIbody:root” item and press H to unhide
    4. In the Viewport, zoom out so you can see the skeleton
    5. Press play on the timeline to check that it works
    6. If it doesn’t, it might be because of a persistent bug in Maya! To fix that, QUIT OUT OF MAYA and open Maya again. And try the process again of importing it and see if it works.
  4. SETUP A SEQUENCE IN UNREAL:
    If you don’t already have a Sequence with a MetaHuman, you’ll need to set one up.

    1. Open Unreal Engine and import a MetaHuman (via Quixel Bridge)
    2. Add the MetaHuman to your scene, and zero out its transform (ie. the location, rotation, scale in the details panel)
    3. In the Outliner, click the floor object (if you have one), and zero out its transform as well (it defaults to a height of 20 for some reason)
    4. Now in the content browser, create a folder for SEQUENCES and create a new Sequence in it (right-click and go CINEMATICS > LEVEL SEQUENCE)
    5. Open the Sequence, and change the FPS to match your Maya scene earlier
    6. Go to the first frame (0000), drag the Blueprint from the Outliner into the Sequence
    7. In the Sequence, under BODY, delete the “MetaHuman_ControlRig” layer
  5. IMPORT THE BODY ANIMATION:
    1. In the Content Browserright-click and choose “Import to /Game/…
    2. Open the body animation FBX you exported from Maya
    3. At the top of the dialogue box, click RESET TO DEFAULT
    4. Under MESH, change the SKELETON to ”metahuman_base_skel
    5. Under ‘Advanced’, change CUSTOM SAMPLE RATE to match what it was in Maya (do NOT leave this field blank)
    6. Click IMPORT ALL
    7. Once it imports, make sure to go FILE > SAVE ALL to save the imported file.
    8. You MUST now open the newly imported animation, then change the ‘Retarget Source Asset‘ dropdown to the name of your MetaHuman body size. Otherwise the MetaHuman will be dramatically taller than it should be, and the bones all the wrong length. Then click SAVE and close the editor window for the animation. 
    9. In the Sequence, on frame 0000, click “+TRACK” on the BODY track, then hover over ANIMATION, and choose the clip you imported.
    10. You will need to adjust BOTH the Sequence ‘End Time‘ and ‘Selection End‘ to match the length of the clip you imported – otherwise it won’t fully play.




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