What is AutoPhysics

AutoPhysics is a tool that shows how your animation would look after certain physics-based filters are applied to it.

The end result is defined by the parameters you set: the force of gravity, the selection of the physics filters, the influence settings for various parts of the character and so on.

By default, AutoPhysics is configured to adjust the animation in a way that the character would keep their balance, make jumps that go by ballistic trajectories, preserve the rotation while in mid-air, add preparation poses etc.
All this can significantly improve even a rather plain-looking, basic animation.

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Physical assistant

Physical assistant is a copy of the original animation, but supplied with improved physics.
Physical assistant's position in the scene can be adjusted using Manipulators. Its place in relation to the original character can also be set by the Ghost Offset parameter:

If you set zero values to all three of the fields, the coordinates of the physical assistant would fully coincide with the coordinates of the original character.
This way, you can easily spot even the tiniest of changes that this tool provides.

AutoPhysics is also represented as a stripe above the Timeline. The color of this line shows how significant are changes proposed by the tool on the corresponding frames.

For example, on a yellow-colored interval the assistant slightly deviates from the original animation.

While on a green interval it is almost identical.

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Snapping to physics ghost

You can make continuous adjustments to your animation, and the physical assistant would reflect them instantly. It’s like you have two parallel animations: the original one and the final one, with the latter taking physics into consideration.

To apply the changes suggested by the physical assistant to your animation, click the Snap button. After this, the original will become identical to the physical one, and the stripe above the Timeline will be colored green to reflect this.
Sometimes you might need to use the Snap button several times.

 Note: if you don’t want the interpolation to become fixed after the animation is snapped to the physical assistant, you’ll need to disable the Fixing interpolation on change button:

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AutoPhysics: Current Features

In many cases, the AutoPhysics tool can help to improve an original animation, but this doesn’t mean it has no limitations.

Currently, the AutoPhysics tool is able to:

  • Build ballistic trajectories and adjust character rotation in mid-air.
  • Correct the character’s balance on the basis of the placement of the fulcrum area.
  • Add secondary motion. Correct the trajectory for the character’s center of mass.
  • Work with both humanoid and non-humanoid characters.
But at the same time the tool is not intended for:
  • “Stay-in-place’ animation (such as walking or running where the character doesn’t move forward).
  • Collisions between objects.
  • Animations where the character is hanging from something, sliding or climbing.
Still, the tool remains under active development, with its functionality increasing constantly.

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