Hello! Today we are celebrating animation technology to do anim transitions going into the codebase of the internal Build 41 test version. ‘What are these?’ I hear you cry. Well, we have a clever man in Australia who can explain. Over to Zac!
“Up until now, the character would go from standing, to walking,to sneaking, to running, to standing again. At every state change, there was no lead-in. We were using some maths to blend from one pose to another, but it really wasn’t enough.
“The change was still looking fairly unnatural in some cases. The character had an air of defying gravity, for example, when he/she suddenly went from standing still to full sprint.”
“As of now in the internal test build, we can add transition animations. So in the described instance it’s: StandingToRunning. This is where the character will change stance, shift their weight, and launch into a run. As a result it all seems much more lifelike.
So, check this out:
As you can see above, another area where this is helping a lot is in aiming animations where there’s an object in the character’s hands. Formerly, due to some complex under the bonnet maths, when it did this blend between the two poses you ended up with, say, a gun floating in the air between the hands rather than being realistically held.
Now, however, with this Zac anim-transitioning magic we can have a handcrafted tailor-made animation to make the character aim down the sights and bridge the gap between the two poses. So this makes everything looks much more sleek and cool.
Here comes the traditional disclaimer: although these videos are still looking super-cool we’re still not at a point we can release a public beta. There’s a bunch of optimization to go in, some MP and SP save system improvements we need to test and mix in, Zac needs to work on the rotation blending for wheeling on spot / zombie alert walking toward player angles etc.
We also need to work on zed hordes – pooling what states zombies are in, and sharing a smaller pool of zombie skeletons for the same anims so we get better performance when there’s a horde on-screen.
(Seeing as Zac was previously the guy who got two million dancing penguin models on the Wii though, we’ve undoubtedly got the best man for the job.)
We should also probably fix the bug in the current build that makes survivors look like this. Maybe.
This week’s character creation screen-created dictator from our hardy bunch of internal testers. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Centralized Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too!