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Best Approach for attaching Armour?

Hi people,

I was wondering what will be the best approach for attaching an Armour piece like for example gloves in hands. The fingers will have animations and so the gloves should animate along with the finger bones. I am aware that there are two methods of implementation.

1) Using sockets in bones. This will work but the animations wont play on the gloves right? It will just be static and move along. Thus this method will fail.

2) By rigging the armour piece in Maya, importing the skeleton, adding them as components in the character BP and using the 'Master Pose Component' to drive the animations. This method will work. But I have a question regarding this. If we use this method, and say we have 4 armour pieces in total. This means the character BP will always have 5 skeletal mesh components (4 armour pieces + character itself) every time. Will this create any performance problems? Will this draw 5 skeletal meshes in scene every time I hit play? Will this be expensive in terms of performance?

Any help would be appreciated. In case my questions are not clear or you wish to ask more questions, please do ask me and I shall explain. Thanks in advance.

Product Version: UE 4.10
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asked Feb 14 '16 at 10:20 AM in Using UE4

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avatar image JaroMast Feb 15 '16 at 02:03 PM

I will just comment cuz I can have some outdated info. I'm using the second option you mentioned. And as I read some time ago each additional peace of armor will decrease the performace.
Looking forward for answer from someone with updated info :)

avatar image StJimmy Feb 21 '16 at 09:20 PM

hi, I guess what manoelneto said gives a good idea on how performance may not take a huge hit using the master pose component. :)

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That's exactly what the "master pose component" feature is for. AFAIK it won't have much overhead (beyond the extra draw calls for the attached armor pieces) because only the master skeleton is updated and its matrices are re-used to deform the "slave" meshes.

Of course, you can mix and match. Use simple attach points for things that don't deform (like helmets) and master pose for things like gloves, pants, etc.

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answered Feb 15 '16 at 02:56 PM

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avatar image StJimmy Feb 21 '16 at 09:17 PM

Thanks man, appreciated :) I understand the concept better now.

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