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Animation Alembic vs. FBX

rlaphamrlapham Posts: 9 Oculus Start Member
Hi, 

My workflow to bring Quill animations into AR (via ARKit) works with Alembic exports. Has anyone been able to run Quill animations with its FBX export? 

For more information - Alembic animation works in Unity with AlembicImporter plugin, but does not build to Android or iOS (it will work as a stand alone VR app). On the other side, Alembic works great in Unreal (part of the trade off is the materials (original Quill color) isn't as correct as Unity (with the Quill shader). So basically I've been forced to use Unreal for AR development with Quill animations and was wondering if anyone had success animating with the FBX export. 

Thanks,
Richard

Comments

  • schevrelschevrel Posts: 54 Oculus Staff
    The Quill FBX export does not include animations. The types of animations Quill produces (different mesh topology on each frame) is not compatible with FBX format. You can make Quill Alembic export work with Unreal, you will need to create an unlit material and connect the vertex color property (rgba) from the alembic mesh to the emissive color of the material
  • rlaphamrlapham Posts: 9 Oculus Start Member
    Thanks,

    Quick follow up question: is there anyway to reproduce quill's opacity with the unreal material? 

    Thanks,
    Richard 
  • schevrelschevrel Posts: 54 Oculus Staff
    The opacity of each vertex is exported in Alembic as the "a" in the "rgba" property.

    Quill uses a custom version of alpha-to-coverage out of order transparency, which relies on forward rendering, multi-sampling, and noise dithering to achieve the final result.

    It may be hard to replicate the exact same transparency method in Unreal, and it would require some complex custom shaders to get it to look like Quill.
  • PappyneekPappyneek Posts: 3
    NerveGear
    schevrel said:
    The Quill FBX export does not include animations. The types of animations Quill produces (different mesh topology on each frame) is not compatible with FBX format. You can make Quill Alembic export work with Unreal, you will need to create an unlit material and connect the vertex color property (rgba) from the alembic mesh to the emissive color of the material
    Did they change this recently or is this issue in relation to the Quill to Unity workflow? I'm currently importing both alembic and fbx into Maya from quill and and both are working fine for me for animation. 

    Only problem I'm facing at this point is making alembic exports render the exported color information using Joe Daniel's Vertex Uber Shader. But that's another story. 
  • rlaphamrlapham Posts: 9 Oculus Start Member
    My question was specifically for Unreal (Unity has a shader that matches Quill perfectly). Direct imports to Unreal didn't keep its color and I had to make an unlit material like schevrel said - this was in March (I'm not sure if it's been updated). 
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