Character Animation for Real-time Applications

Michael Putz,
Klaus Hufnagl,

Institute of Computer Graphics
Graz University of Technology


Many of the techniques which had recently only been used in off-line animation, like skeletal animation, real-time deformation and skinning of meshes, are now established methods for the implementation of real-time 3D character animation.
The importance of real-time character animation in computer games has increased considerably over the past decade. Due to advances in computer hardware and especially the introduction of Graphic Processing Units, the demand for more realism in computer games is continuously growing. Beside traditional pre-computed and then replayed animation data, there is use for event triggered real-time calculated animation.
Animating models by manipulating an attached skeleton is a common technique for producing lifelike animations in games. It has both a firm basis in biological reality, and a low memory requirement (compared to, for example, storing vertex and normal vectors for each frame).
This work shows a way of combining both off-line animation and real-time generated procedural animation.

skeletal animation and mesh skinning, real-time IK, bones, biped, real-time character animation, skinning, physic based animation, procedural animation, parametric animation



1. Introduction
2. Related work
2.1 Skeleton Animation Systems
2.2 The need for skinning to generate a vertex-hull
2.2.1 Single weight vertices & their disadvantages
2.2.2 Multiple weighted vertices for smooth skinning
2.3 File Format
3. Approach & Implementation
3.1 Offline-animation Implementation
3.2 Physic-based Implementation
3.2.1 Implementing physic based animation using bones animation
4. Results
5. Conclusion & Outlook
6. References


February 2002