Using Animations for "more" than Voxel data

Maraskan posted this 24 July 2018

A simple question, and please forgive me if it is a silly one:

Let's say I made myself a cute little voxel character that is animated using PicaVoxels wonderful frame system. I am planning to use these frames with mecanim.

Now I want to add something to this, such as an item, a hat that bops with every movement, that kind of thing. Is it safe to simply add this to the volume under Frame, and then use the animation frame as normal?

Example structure:


~Voxelvolume with script


~~Frame 1



~~Frame 2


~~~ADDITIONAL GAME OBJECT, different positioning

Test wise, it seems to work just fine, allowing me to animate with voxels while also using smaller rotations/movement on a granularity you can't normally do with voxels. (Bit of a cheat)

IF this would work, there'd be a ton of benefits, such as...

  • Animated items for attacks/Use animations
  • More flair for animations while mostly sticking to the voxel style, since now you can even do things like small headbops, a shifting tail etc, without making a fully rigged model
  • Colliders could even be added, so only specific frames have the "hit enemies" collider, allowing for really neat possibilities to have collisions be fully and perfectly hitbox based

Is this fine, or is there something with this idea that really can't work?

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GarethIW posted this 24 July 2018

I can't think of a reason off the top of my head that you shouldn't do this. You might have problems if you're using the refresh from MagicaVoxel button as I think this may destroy/rebuild the anim frames.

Out of interest, I kind of do this in my current game, but I have sub-parts parented to the volume (rather than frames) and those sub-parts have their own animations that are timed to the parent anim. For example, the head is a separate volume to the torso, but both parts have their bobbing animations timed together.

It's probably not the best way of doing animations like this, but I got into voxels precisely because I'm not a modeller/animator :D

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