Animating characters with Mixamo | Part 3 | Combining multiple animations

Beginner Mixamo

Our character model is now rigged and we can start searching for animations that we would like to use. Once we have all of them, we can combine them into a single file in Blender.


Downloading animations

First click the "Animations" tab (1) at the top, then type the name of the animation you are looking for into the search bar (2) (in our case it is "Idle"). On the left side on the window you can now select an animation you like (3) and on the right side you can see it applied to your character. You can also configure the animation using controls on the right (4). Once you have found and configured an animation you like, click the "Download" button (5) on the right.

Select, configure and download animation

This opens a window where you can further configure download settings. We leave these as they are and only change the "Frames per Second" option (1) to 60, then click the "Download" button (2) to download the character with the animation applied.

Select, configure and download animation

Repeat this process with as many animations as you like. For some animations (like walking) you will want to check the "In Place" option on the right to prevent the character from moving out of the origin:

Select, configure and download animation

Combining animations into a single file

When you have downloaded all animations you like, we can go back to Blender and combine them into a single file, which is required by BBMOD model conversion tools (both CLI and GUI). In Blender, select File > Import > FBX from the top menu.

Select Import FBX from the File menu

In the window that opens simply navigate to the directory where you have downloaded the animations to and select all of them (1). On the rights side of the window, scroll to the "Transform" section and set "Scale" (2) to 100. Continue by click the "Import FBX" button (3).

Import all animations

When the import is finished, select all of the imported models by pressing the A key and have a look on the right side of the window, where you can find the "Transform" section. "Location" and "Rotation" should be all equal to 0 and "Scale" to 1, but it can happen that the models are rotated on some axes:

Transform is wrong

To fix this, select Object > Apply > All Transforms from the menu at the top of the viewport:

Apply all transforms

Transform is correct

At the top right corner of Blender you should see a "Scene Collection" with as many armatures as you have imported animations. Hold Shift and left click on all except the first one and right click to open up a menu, then select "Delete Hierarchy" to delete those.

Delete armatures

Now you can select the "Animation" tab at the top of the window to switch to animation layout:

Switch to animation mode

Make sure your armature is selected:

Select armature

At the bottom left of the window there should be a dropdown that currently says Dope Sheet, change it to Action Editor (1) and then a new dropdown with text similar to "Armature||Layer0" (2) should appear to the right of it.

Action editor

These are actually the loaded animations, they just do not have the original names. You can click through these and play them using the buttons at the bottom:

Play animations

Once you make sense out of which animation is which, you can give them proper names, which will be used in the filenames when we convert the character to BBMOD. Simply click on the animation name, type a new one and press Enter:

Rename animations

Exporting from Blender

When we have our animations ready, we can export the character from Blender again. BBMOD model converters (both CLI and GUI) utilize Assimp, which supports many different file formats, including FBX, COLLADA, glTF and even .blend files. There are virtually no advantages to use one over another when converting them to BBMOD (except that some may be better supported by Assimp), so you can pick any you like. We prefer FBX, as it is currently the standard in many game engines. To export an FBX from Blender, select File > Export > FBX from the top menu bar.

Select Export FBX from the top menu

In the window that opens navigate to the directory where you would like to save the file to and give it a name you like (1), we will be using Character.fbx. On The right side of the window scroll to the "Transform" section and change option "Forward" to -X Forward and "Up" to -Z Up (2). These two usually work for most models. If your models appear flipped in GameMaker, you will need to configure these until they are right! Continue by pressing the "Export FBX" button (3).

Export FBX

Your character now has motion-captured animations and it is fully prepared for conversion into the BBMOD file format!

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