Adeon Writer has filed a Feature Request in the Second Life JIRA: BUG-10990 – [Bento] A formal method of bone-translating animations is vital for the creation of proper facial expressions.
Included in the JIRA is this quote:
[04:28:52 PM] EpicGordon Broome: I don’t like getting involved in development, JIRA’s or forums or whatever. But disallowing bone translation in animations is ignoring some very basic fundamentals of animation theory, dating back decades. I’ve scrapped multiple projects because of the lack of squash/stretch in walk cycles (Toony characters). This update is also going to break features in an upcoming avatar of mine, regarding facial animation. Which is funny, because they give us so many new facial bones – that we just can’t use properly. Raise eyebrows, pull up mouthcorners for a smile, extend a tongue, using only rotations? I cannot for the life of me see a GOOD REASON for this limitation.
I have this feature – http://imgs.moyloon.com/i/05d71e3d26.png – almost done for a new avatar of mine, a pose-able tongue. The new rig has two bones for this explicit purpose. But they are useless, as I cannot pull the tongue out of the mouth in any good fashion. I cannot pull the mouth corners around without arbitrarily locking them to rotating around a bone.
Not to mention non-humanoid avatars. We’re getting so many new bones – and yet we’ll be limiting the design freedom so much, since anything non-humanoid will be unable to avoid issues caused by inheriting rotations, since locations cannot be transformed.
Allowing animations to do this is a trivial change, as I’m fairly certain that limitations were put in place to prohibit this (Hence why .anim’s were able to do things .bvh cannot), rather than requiring lots of labor on the engine.
It doesn’t affect me personally, too much. If this is the way it ends up being, I’ll just hog more resources by alpha swapping meshes, and using more animations for each of these different states. However, it’s unnecessarily clunky, and will ruin a lot of content creator’s livelihoods in its current implementation.
Visit the JIRA and click WATCH. You’ll get update emails as this ticket proceeds. DO NOT voice opinions in the JIRA! Opinions and ‘me too’ is for the forum: Project Bento Feedback Thread. The discussion there is growing quickly.
Adeon has posted this in the discussion thread:
I found it very odd that there seems to be nothing stopping you from creating bone-translating animations for the new face bones in Project Bento, regardless of what is stated on the wiki. So either LL changed their minds some time between the writing of the wiki and the initial release of the Project Bento Beta, or they have not yet implimented the uplaod blocking.
So, let it be clear: Project Bento, right now, to me, is perfect. You can rig to the face bones, you can slide those face bones around with animations to put them where they need to be for your avatar. Nothing suddenly reverts when you try to rotate them after translate them – it’s pretty much smooth sailing from blender straight to SL.
The only cause for alarm is the Wiki actually stating that it’s blocked. Even though it currently isn’t. But if it is blocked in the future, yeah, that’s a big problem. The face bones wouldn’t be nearly as useful with rotations alone. (Ref)
PS: .anim files generated from AvaStar/Blender. They work without a hitch. That’s no promise that they always will, of course. (Ref)
So, for now position locking is not and issue. Like Adeon, the Lab saying they are going to block animation of bone positions makes me nervous. So, do WATCH the JIRA. Voting is basically ignored by the Lindens.