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Guest Mauler

4 - professional Helicopter Rigging - Author Laubi

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Guest Mauler

Boning a VTOL-Vehicle

Because I was asked this several times, here a little tutorial. I used the Helicopter that comes together with the Westwood Vehicle Pak that you can download at: ftp.westwood.com/pub/Renegade/tools

  • Open your model:


    When I refer to a `bone` in this tutorial, this simply means a StandardPrimitives Box with the size of 1x1x1, created in the Top-View, here is an example:


    The name, is the same as the bonex name, for example if the VehicleP bone is mentioned a box 1x1x1 with the name VehicleP and the W3D Options [ ]Export Geometry unchecked.


  • Get started:

    First we need a Rotor00 bone, for (belive it or not) the rotor, place this in the rotation center of the rotor of your helicopter:


    Now we must link the rotor to the rotor00 bone. Use the Linking tool image-52-05_LINKING.JPG, select the rotor, and Drag and Drop to the rotor00 bone. the box will flash when you release the mouse button to indicate the linkin was successfull. If you acidently linked it to another object, don`t mind. Just link it to the right bone, you might want to use the other view`s to archive your aim easier.

  • To controll the linking (also in later stages) 

    deactivate the Linking tool by clicking for example at the selection tool (or any other tool than the linking) and you will come up with a window like this, activate the Display Subtree Option


    You see the rotor00 bone, and a little shift to the right the TopRotoShape (what is the name of the rotor). So everything is right. I`ll post some images of this dialog in the further process of the tutorial so you can controll your work easilie.

  • Now we will go on with the rear rotor

    create a rotor01 bone for the rer rotor. Just create it the same way as the top rotor, but rotate is 90 degree to the right in the Front View. To easilie do this you can rightclick on the rotate tool image-52-08_ROTATETOOL.JPG.


    Now move the bone to the rear rotor, and link it to the rear rotor mesh.


    You should now have a result like this:


    By the way: You should save your work from time to time 

  • Arm your vehicle

    At the moment your vehicle can`t fire a wepon, nor can be shot. We will change this now.

    Every Vehilce can have a primary ammo and a secondary ammo. Also it can have two "pods". We will create just pods for primary ammo.

    Create a MuzzleA0, and a MuzzleA1 bone in the Top-View. Place them there where later the Rockets should be relased.


    Congratulation, your vehicle is now able to fire the hell out of some enemys. But isn`t it unfair that they can`t fire back icon_smile.gif ?

    So select all meshes of your helicopter and activate the [x] Projectile W3D setting for this.


  • Add Worldbox and Boundingbox

    Create a box named Worldbox that covers all part of the helicopter what later should be collide whith physical things


    Activate (*)OBBox [x]Hide [x]Physical, [x]Vehicle, [x]Camera, as the W3D-Settings.


    Create another box, covering all parts of the model only activate OBBox and Hide.

    Your vehicle can now shoot, and can be damaged, you are now nearly finished with the RenX part.

  • Help your helicopter move over the ground

    create three new bones WheelP01WheelP02WheelP03. rotate them 90 degree in the top view to the right or left, or use the rotate tool by right clicking


    Place them all at the vheels postion. This will later help your helicopter to move out of the warfactory/above the ground.


  • Finish Linking

    Now you must link all Bones to the Mainbody, also the Bounding and Worldbox:


  • Export your model

    Here is an image of my completly boned model:


    Now export it e.g. as v_my_heli.w3d wit these settings:


  • Add your vehicle to Leveldit

    Browse to the Apache Preset and klick to ADD (or TEMP if you want to use it in a mix map)


    Enter a name, and change the model to your w3d file:


    I also changed the weapon type to the MLRS Ammo:


  • Load your map and add the helicopter

    Load your map, and click add, also don`t forget some startupspwaner:


    Export the Modpackage and test your helicopter ingame.

  • Problems that might occour:

    My helicopter shoots in the wrong direction! - Rotate the Muzzle Bone

    My Helicopter fly into the wrong direction! (WTF?) - Group all your Stuff and rotate it 90 degree

    I want a MG/Wepon that can be moved (like the orca/apachee has) - Just create a turret/barrel/muzzle liek for a normal vehicle

    I need more rotors - Just add rotor02, rotor03 and so on

    A note by SeaMan "Your can have only four rotor bones (rotor00,rotor01,rotor02,rotor03). "

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    • Guest Mauler
      By Guest Mauler
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      The folowing window should popup:

      The green box is the Triggerzone, change the size and the position over `Size Zone` and `Move Zone` so that it is positioned in front of the door, do the same for the TriggerZone2, but position it at the back of the door.
      Click OK, and your door is now ready for use. Just click on Make and voliá!
      In the Physic Models Tab you can define some open/close sounds and times, or make the door a security door:

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