Using Bones in 3Ds Max

To achieve a realistic interactive environment for our group project I looked into adding a static human asset into our environment; this was achieved but the end result was too mannequin like. So to push the project on into the second semester I will be looking into the development of animated human characters which will populate and move around our environment.

To be able to move the limbs, head, etc., of an animated character or object bones have to be added to your model. To get me started I followed this YouTube tutorial by CG Swot that showed the bone tool being used to move a desk lamp.

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First I made a model of a desk lamp with three pivoting joints (much like a human arm).02

Then in the animation tab I selected the Bone Tool and then selected Create Bones.

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I then clicked at a joint to start the bone then clicked at the next joint to end the bone and to start a new one.

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This gave me a total of three bones for the lamp, the same as a human arm (upper arm, lower arm and wrist).

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Next I connected Dummy helpers to the parts of the lamp that need to be moved and rotated, the Dummy helper helps keep objects connected to it move with it without becoming detached from each other. I also added some quick materials to the lamp and a lighting set up in order to render out an animation of the end result.

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