Niran has added Qarl’s Mesh Deformer code to the Niran viewer 1.03. I tried it out and played with mesh. There are some things I learned.
The size of the mesh does matter. The Deformer does not move all mesh to the outside of the avatar. In some cases I found small mesh clothes were inside the avatar. Also, large clothes left a space between the avatar and the mesh.[youtube gRT0fWacyEY]
An explanation of the video is below in the Video section.
So, I guess the base avatar that one designs mesh from is going to be important. I’ll have to do some experiments to see how using a personal shape avatar works compared to using the base avatar.
With only two avatars in the field of view, there was no noticeable difference in performance.
Rigged vs Plain Mesh
Qarl is considering the need for an addition to the mesh data specification. Adding a flag to tell the deformer whether to deform a mesh or not. I’m not sure that will be possible. If such a change breaks existing mesh, the Lindens will resist the change.
However, rigged mesh has weight painting data. So, it may be possible to recognize mesh that should and shouldn’t be deformed without the flag.
Or figuring out whether to deform or not may not be necessary at all. I tried wearing a mesh without rigging. Very simply the system does not offer to allow it to be worn. It can be attached. Once attached it is not deformed. So, it may be a moot point whether the Lab will provide a flag in the data spec or not.
The video shows (0:00 – 0:26) a jacket that is too small and how the deformer affects it. Without the alpha layer you can see where I poke through the mesh jacket. As I increase the avatar Body Fat setting you can see more of me pokes through. The jacket does get bigger. But, the initial fit has a lasting effect. As I make the avatar smaller, I still poke through. The mesh shrinks with me so I never fit inside it.
Obviously being able to try on mesh clothes before buying is going to be important. Or we need some way to adjust clothing size in the mesh deformer. But, I expect that is beyond the scope of the current project.
I think this shows that mesh will need to be based on a standard avatar shape, the default avatar… if there really is such a thing. Loose fitting clothes are probably going to work better than tight clothes. Using the standard shape during design is likely to produce clothes the fit more avatar shapes with fewer sizes.
I suspect using custom shapes during design is probably going to be a problem. It does look at though I can keep my shape and the majority of clothes will fit well.
Next (0:26-0:47) I start and stop a dance animation to show my boobs bounce and the mesh top (black and white top with pink belt – the blue mesh is a regular SL top worn so I don’t flash my breasts.) bounces with me. I am surprised but happy that works.
Next (0:47-1:20) I show that a well fitted top remains well fitted. I do not poke through as I max out my breast size. The mesh also works well when I go from air borne perky to granny sag.
The last part (1:20-1:36) shows a mesh bug. My friend is wearing a mesh skirt. If you watch closely you will see it jump out in front of her for just a second. It does this every few seconds.
It is hard to know what is going on with her skirt. She was trying out the Firestorm viewer and I was using Nirans. We were both seeing different things. She would see me poke through both tops while I saw the second top fit perfectly. Obviously a viewer will have to have the Mesh Deformer code for its user to see its affect on mesh clothes.
My friend also had some odd problems with Firestorm and mesh. The following images show some odd effects. Both of us relogged to try and clear the problems. It may have been a cache corruption, but I did not try clearing the cache. Changing to other meshes worked.
The first image shows things starting out well. When she added some boots things went sideways. If you look you can see the skirt shifted to her right. The alpha layer then hides a chunk of her hip. Then removing the boots distorted the right side of her torso. It is hard to see where the torso went concave in the images, but in-world it is obvious.
Removing the boots made no difference. Relogging made no difference. That we both saw the same thing was surprising.
The Alpha version of the Mesh Deformer works surprisingly well. I expect we will see it appearing in more viewers. I hear the Exodus Viewer has released a version of the viewer with the Deformer code added, my next stop today.
I think it is obvious that while the Mesh Deformer will make wearing mesh clothes much easier. It will end the need for us to change our shape to that of the clothes. But, it does not solve all the fit problems. Clothes designers will have to learn to work with the new mesh. We users will have to learn what works for our avatar.
As I wrote this and did some more tests I shifted more to the opinion that a Boolean flag is not going to be needed. So, the possible obstacle of needing a change to the mesh data spec probably can be avoided.
How the new Mesh Deformer is working opens up some new possibilities. I am sure Xcite! is excited. Those of us that use nipples realized that prim nipples and avatar physics were incomparable. Now mesh nipples with work with avatar physics.
Having the mind I have… which could be a good thing… I also immediately wondered what this will do for a guy’s package. Sex tends to be fun and funny. I suspect some new hilarious possibilities have just arrived. It should be a fun year in Second Life.