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A jam submission

AZRI Game-play AnimationsView project page

AZRI game-play animations for the search for a star contest
Submitted by BlackBird — 6 hours, 35 minutes before the deadline
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AZRI Game-play Animations's itch.io page

Results

CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score
Documentation#33.5003.500
Technical#33.7503.750
Overall#53.2003.200
Creative#53.0003.000
Presentation#73.0003.000
Research + Development#72.7502.750

Ranked from 4 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

Judge feedback

Judge feedback is anonymous and shown in a random order.

  • Well done, we were really impressed to see your animations in context and using a state machine. We really liked the jump and ground slam, it had a nice energetic feel to it. Something to look at in the future, the spacing in this piece could have been refined a bit more, If you track the tip of the sword you should be able to see this. your Idle looked like you hadn't posed the fingers in the free hand. We aren't a fan of big moving cameras for when judging animation. Would prefer to see it through a static perspective camera.
  • I will save the feedback for the animation, but one quick note about the reference footage. It's probably a good idea to shoot the reference footage of yourself with a high contrast background. It possible to miss some of the intricacies of the bodies motion with heavy black clothes, against the tarmac and at night. **Idle** - Strong Idle, featuring a nice split stance and minor offsets to break up the symmetry. It's something I've seen a couple of times now and something I suspect is more an issue with the rig than posing, but it looks odd how the upper thigh bulges at the top. As I say though, this is potentially a rig issue as it's been fairly consistent with other animations. - I would look to add a slight rotation of the pelvis to show the weight being on the back leg. - A minor polish task, but the bottom of the shirt is floating until the character looks around and it settles into it's correct position. **Power Up** - Watch the hip movement from frame 180 - 197. It translates back and forth quite quickly and loses the character's sense of weight. Motion trails are a great tool to check these issues and smooth out the motion. - Currently, the character rotates the wrist to bring the sword into position; to give the illusion of more weight, try to incorporate more of the body into getting the sword in position. **Attack** - A lot of power is lost in the initial strikes as the character is moving forward. I would look into applying a pose to pose style attack here. - The reason behind this is can mainly be put down to a lack of solid foundation for the character. Currently, the character is swinging as they're taking a step, which limits their contact with the floor and their ability to transition the energy through the strike. In contrast, if you take a tennis player and analyze their forehand/backhand shots, both feet will be planted. They will then lead with rotation from the hips, followed by the chest with the hands coming through last. - For the jumping attack, really compress the character down during the anticipation (around frame 300). The character will explode out like a coiled spring and show the transfer of energy. - For the pose in the air, really exaggerate the reverse C shape with the body. In this case, the sword is an extension of the arms and body and will also want to be rotated all the way back. (2nd pic along from top - https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/151011393742989515/) - On the strike, think of a chain starting at the hips and ending at the tip of the word. the root of all motion for characters will most likely come from the hips. With this in mind, it will be the hips that drive this attack. To be fair, you already have the core motion there in the attack, however as you go up the chain to the tip of the sword, each controller needs to be delayed. Essentially, delay the upper half and sword from rotating forward until after the character has landed, with the sword being the last piece of the chain to whip forward and strike the ground. - On the settle, the upper half is recovering before the back foot has made contact with the floor and stabilizing the foundation of the character. Like before, offset the rotation of the upper half until after the back foot has made contact. This is quite a complex animation to attempt in a couple of days. If you get more time to work on this piece, I would break down each section and focus on them in smaller chunks. It's quite difficult to describe these motions, it's possible that some of this feedback is not particularly clear. I would recommend finding some different reference footage to use as games animation is most often very unrealistic, but visually far more appealing than people using oversized sword that they can't wield.
  • I'm especially impressed by the technical side of this project, the focus on blueprints and integrating the project within unreal is excellent, and identifying and resolving the issue of smooth transitions shows great problem solcing abilities. This is exactly the kind of workflow I would use. Using the animation layers for each anim is another example of good problem solving skills, but I would recommend maya's built in game exporter to have multiple animations in one scene, as the anim layer is better for adjusting the pose of an entire animation and can get a bit crashy when you have too many layers. However that is a matter of preference. The animation itself is not perfect, however you mention the time constraints. I would focus on ensuring that your centre of gravity is never off balance, try looking into Richard Lico's demonstrations on body mechanics for an informative breakdown of this. A good start that I would've liked to have seen more polished, push those poses, think about lines of action and always remember to think of your character like a bouncy ball!
  • You should look for references in this kind of attacks. It feels a bit off, specially the weight and poses. Keep in mind that the sword should lead the action.

Challenge Tier

Search For A Star

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