I have finally finished rigging the character!
But what is rigging you may ask? Well! It is the process of adding a skeleton to the model and adding controllers to it. A model of itself is nice but if I want to be able to manipulate its limbs it needs a skeleton like a real living being.
Although a skeleton in a game is quite abit unusual compared to the real counterpart. Firstly you do not really use bones like ribcages and hipbones and so forth. Instead you use simplified, but also very flexible bones called joints. These joins are basicly points in space which are connected to eachother. These joints can be moved, rotated and scaled to do alot of different effects.
The spheres are the joints and the pyramids points to which joint is its parent.
But to manipulate these joints you attach controllers to them. But what is controllers you may ask? They are kinda like steering wheels for the bones for easier manipulation. Since the bones themselves have variables which cannot be reset we use these controllers to be able to do just that. If we would reset a bone like a controller we would end up with a compact group of bones in the middle of the scene without any way to reset them.
This is why we need controllers!
So thats why controllers are needed to manipulate and reset the bones positions.
The thing one has to consider when making controllers is what the animator wants to be able to manipulate when animating. The rigger has the job to make sure he can add all the functionality the animator wants from the rig. Since I am both the rigger and animator I pretty much know what I need for my rig.
Varying how much you want to manipulate the rig itself can become very simple or advanced. But for games you usually make the rigs pretty basic since adding to many bones can have an impact on performance. More detailed rigs are usually reserved for models which are used for closeups in cutscenes.
Example rig. Alot of controls just for the face alone!
In CGI movies the rigs can get fairly advanced and use a ton of bones but since everything will not be rendered in realtime the animationstudio can get away with it and that way create characters with alot of detailed animations.
But for the purposes of this rig is to create a character which will be in a game so I kept it enough for what I need.
Now one step is remaining to make the character come alive, which is animating!