PatMarrNC - all messages by user

2015/8/31 20:33:32
Change the UV Map? I just discovered this on sourceforge... its a file translation utility that can import a lot of different formats (including .ase) and export them as something else.

http://assimp.sourceforge.net/

It could be useful to import assets that are in the .ase format and export them to a format that is recognized by other modelling software, so you can edit them and then re-export them as .ase files again
edited by PatMarrNC on 31/08/2015
2015/8/31 19:55:04
QUADRAPED IDEA.... another approach that could be used in scenes where the character was not completely visible while walking:

an imported model of an animal's backside and hind legs could be attached to a biped as a tail. This is a device that has been used in theater productions where human actors have to portray 4 legged creatures. The backside, in that case, has wheels, and it follows the actor around when they walk.

Unfortunately, a fixed model's legs would not move, so it wouldn't be useful in full-body scenes while the character walked. HOWEVER...

in that case you could put a backdrop in front of the stationary legs to hide them, focus a camera on the moving front legs, and put the output of that camera on the backdrop. This would do a "pretty good" job of simulating the appearance of a walking quadraped.


UPDATE: I tried the idea above (using a camera and backdrop to simulate hind leg movement) and couldn't make it work because...

1) the hands swing when walking, and they show up in the backdrop video

2) I could never get the background color of the backdrop to blend with the actual background of the scene, so it was obvious that a backdrop was being used. However a more skilled Muvizu user might know how to overcome both of those obstacles
edited by PatMarrNC on 01/09/2015
2015/8/31 18:51:20
is there a set of scaled reference models...? I just got an email saying that SILO is being offered at a reduced price, in case anybody might be interested. Here's a link to the sale write-up:

http://sites.fastspring.com/smithmicro/product/22145?utm_source=thirdpty&utm_medium=email&hq_e=el&hq_m=2449180&hq_l=4&hq_v=a28cb2cfcb

here are a few SILO tutorials

product overview


(how to make a helmet, very useful in MUVIZU)


creature modelling


UV mapping
2015/8/31 18:32:33
is there a set of scaled reference models...? Thanks to UrbanLamb and Dylly for such detailed responses! The video on BLENDER to UNREAL will be very helpful once I absorb the information contained therein.

Dylly, I really enjoy your sense of humor! Thanks for sharing all of your hard-earned knowledge.

The topic is unduly complicated by the fact that there are so many 3d modelling programs, and their coordinate systems and scaling aren't the same. I had figured out that much already, but the video now gives me a lot more info to work with.

I'm not competely stupid about 3D modelling.. (as a manufacturing engineer I used Unigraphics NX6 to build models, then apply CNC machining tool paths to them. Unfortunately the price tag of NX makes MAYA look like freeware. My first two homes combined cost less than a seat of NX. )

... but I FEEL stupid because I have several of the free modelling packages (Sketchup, Blender and DesignSpark3D) and they just don't seem intuitive to me. I bought SILO2 for $99 USD, and it is beginning to make sense to me. So for now I just use the other packages as import-export pathways because they all seem to have options the other packages don't. I see real value in learning Blender though.. it looks amazingly powerful for a free open-source application... especially considering the fact that others on this forum use it with MUVIZU.

So for now I continue using trial and error to build my models. Since it appears that a set of scaled reference models has been requested in the past, I may go ahead and invest the time to make that set, one for each of the 17 standard characters. I justify the time because I figure that anything that makes it easier for others to create new content... the whole MUVIZU community will benefit from that new content.

And MUVZU itself, as a product, becomes more valuable to potential buyers because of its extensibility and the large number of free props that are available for it. I like this product and I want it to live long and prosper.
edited by PatMarrNC on 31/08/2015
edited by PatMarrNC on 31/08/2015
2015/8/29 19:31:45
is there a set of scaled reference models...? After throwing days at the problem, I'm close to having a generic head shape for the fat man character, that's positioned at approximately where his head is spawned. That way, I can create accessories around it, and when I import them to MUVIZU, they'll come in at the right place. (or, at least close enough to position them with the sliders)

Once I have it sized a little better, I'll mark the location of the mouth so people can import it to their preferred modelling program and use it to position their own add-ons like noses, ears, hats, face masks, helmets etc. Knowing where the mouth is will let people create masks that don't cover it up. With the mouth exposed, all the lip synch stuff will still work even with face masks.

Finally, I'll save it as an .OBJ file so it loads into virtually every 3D modelling program, and post it for downloading by anybody who might find it useful
2015/8/29 19:11:32
QUADRAPED IDEA.... OK, I see lots of requests for quadrapeds. I figure it hasn't happened because the engine supports bipeds only, and that would be a major development to introduce a whole new animal (so to speak)

But here's an idea that might be something the existing engine could handle with a few tweaks from the programmers:

Remember those old vaudeville acts where they'd simulate a horse by putting two men under a blanket, and had one of them wear a horse's head? If Muvizu had a "body" container that could be populated with a character, (or two)... then you could create creatures with 4 legs! (better yet, if you could instantiate the legs from one character, you could make a centipede!)

Once we had that, we could create 3d heads all day long and the sky would be the limit!

And while I'm asking for crazy stuff, it would also be cool if the resulting assembly was scalable down to pet size or up to radioactive monster pet size. You know somebody will want to do that. ;-)

Or, it might be easier to create a new biped character class that is much smaller, specifically for use with the quadraped body

Just a thought... put it in the back of your thinking. It might be possible already... can somebody out there figure out a way to couple two characters with a body container so they stay together as a unit? Oh, and we'd only need one head.... ;-)
2015/8/28 16:00:32
is there a set of scaled reference models...? would you be willing to share your tool kit?

I'm retired, so I have a lot of time to throw at this... yesterday I spent all day resizing and re-importing a hat design. My last attempt before going to bed exhausted was scaled so small in the modelling program that the grid wouldn't go any smaller...

its an architectural modelling package, so the dimensions are accurate. I made the hat 2 mm wide, and when I imported it into Muvizu it was still wayyyyy too large for the scaling sliders to make it fit.

I opened my .ase file in notepad, and compared the coordinates to those of another .ase file I got on the asset download page (which imports correctly)... and the coordinate values appeared to be in the same ballpark. The values were in the same range on both sides of the xyz origin, so I would logically expect the width of both imports to be about the same... but they aren't.

And the fact that the physical size of my model is +/- 1mm from origin... I'm not sure I can make it much smaller.

Is anybody aware of an .ase IMPORT utility? or of a modelling package that natively imports .ase files? If I had that, I could import other props that are sized appropriately, and make mine to match.

I did find an FBX importer for Sketchit, but when I tried to import an FBX asset, it said that "ascii FBX is not supported"
2015/8/27 14:55:02
is there a set of scaled reference models...? LOVE this software! I'm already evangelizing it on every internet forum I subscribe to! (Trying to send you customers)

I like that you have made the product infinitely extensible by providing a way for users to create their own models and bring them into Muvizu in a variety of different ways! VERY powerful stuff!

I know I'll be a content creator / contributor once I get my brain wrapped around all the details, but....

My recurring problem is that I have no point of dimensional reference when building my models. It would be great if there existed an inanimate solid model shaped like each of the characters and saved as an .obj file so people could import it into their preferred modelling program and build their accessories at the same scale and coordinates as the characters. (specifically, the XYZ coordinates used for spawning new characters... )


Not asking for freebies here, I would gladly pay for a set of such models.
2015/8/27 4:16:47
New characters and animations well said Braj!

And yeah, once the content store opens, I will be standing in line with my wallet out too...
2015/8/26 21:50:50
objects import at wrong size Okayyy, so I'm going through tutorials as exercises...
I opened a model in Sketchup (Cat ears, to be imported as a hat)...
sized them in Sketchup to fit the 2d character who likes to hang around the intersection of X,Y and Z axes...
exported as ASE, and imported to Muvizu... all that worked as expected

but they were HUGE! too large to resize with the sliders
it was also oriented 90 degrees off what I wanted...

So... back to Sketchup.... changed the orientation and size ...
exported and reimported to Muvizu....

neither size nor orientation changed!

I did this about 5 times, with the same lack of results. Has anyone else seen this? Any suggestions?

(I should probably mention that I actually created the ears in a different 3d package that I'm more proficient with (Silo2) then brought the model into Sketchup so I could use its ASE exporting trick. That might be pertinent information... your thoughts?)
2015/8/26 21:22:44
sizing an object in only one of 3 dimensions Thanks! I never would have figured that out in a million years! In fact, I didn't even NOTICE the chain icon until you mentioned it!

I like it when things work, because that means I'm not as clueless today as I was yesterday...
2015/8/26 15:55:56
Totally Original Characters Is there any chance that the secret of how to create 3-d characters that work in the Muvizu environment will ever be revealed in a tutorial?
2015/8/26 1:28:25
How Do I Combine "live" or "real" video Here's a more comprehensive answer...

http://muvizu.com/Wiki/wiki/108/
2015/8/26 1:16:11
make video wont make video! On my first project, I had the same experience of the computer getting hung before the video finished rendering.

So I tried setting the START - STOP markers at one minute intervals, thereby breaking a 5 minute video into 5 segments. That worked fine. I left a little overlap at each break so I could join them back together on Adobe Premiere Elements

I arrived at the one minute break point by trial and error. With my settings, one minute of video was creating a file about 2 gigs in size. If the output exceeded 2 gigs, either my computer would hang, or the resulting file was unusable.
2015/8/26 1:08:17
Anyone Using Muvizu to promote affiliate products My first MUVIZU project was an animated user testimonial for another software product. They loved it!

Here's a link to it:


Experienced users will recognize it to be a "first project" but to people who aren't familiar with MUVIZU, even the simplest project looks pretty impressive.

This video was created during the first 48 hours after installing Muvizu ... and most of that time was spent learning how to do what I wanted to do and troubleshooting codec issues
edited by PatMarrNC on 26/08/2015
edited by PatMarrNC on 28/08/2015
2015/8/25 22:14:37
sizing an object in only one of 3 dimensions I was watching the tutorial on backdrops, and I noticed that Barry was able to change only the width of a backdrop without changing the height. Every time I try to resize an object, all 3 sizing sliders move together... I can't move only one at a time.

Am I doing something wrong? Or has something changed in MUVIZU since that tutorial was made?
2015/8/25 22:08:51
How Do I Combine "live" or "real" video I couldn't find the answer to that question in one tutorial, but by piecing together info found in several tutorials I tried this (and it worked)

1) the video must be in AVI format. (If your video is in a different format, There are many video format converters you can DL for free from CNET.COM)

2) Once you have a video in AVI format, you can apply it as a texture. If you want the video to play as your background, the easy way to accomplish that is to CREATE > BACKDROPS then select the one you want, wide screen probably being the best choice for a background

3) Right click on the backdrop to open the floating menu, then select EDIT > PROPERTIES > then click on the image

4) on the bottom left corner of the dialog box, click IMPORT

5) navigate to the AVI file, and select it as the texture

6) the backdrop will look like a movie screen playing your AVI video!

7) adjust size of backdrop and/or camera view to fill the whole scene with your video (or whatever you need)


if you don't need transparent alpha channel video, that's it!

If you DO need alpha channel animations then a program named VIRTUALDUB (http://virtualdub.sourceforge.net) is a program that can assemble a series of individual PNG files into a flip-book style animation which can then be saved in AVI format

Hope this helps
2015/8/25 19:07:49
New user with ideas that are probably old news... Thanks Ziggy! I appreciate your help, and especially the fact that you are willing to share your knowledge with newbies.
2015/8/25 19:04:57
some character actions stopped working ! Thanks Ziggy! That's important info to know! (is that written down anywhere, or is it tribal knowledge that gets handed down from user to user on a need to know basis?)

In retrospect, I *DID* move my character to a sitting position just before the conversational actions got greyed out....

BIG OL' DUMMY-O-METER
0_______________/_100 <----me

The good news is that I substituted other actions and got my project finished before Monday morning !
2015/8/25 18:57:05
New characters and animations Having said all that, I realize that it would be great to have one software package that does everything. I'm not trying to discourage improvements to the MUVIZU product... I'm a newbie, but I'm already a huge fan of this software!
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