Lumberyard
Legacy Reference

Transitioning from Legacy (Geppetto and Mannequin) to the Lumberyard Animation System (Animation Editor)

The following topic helps you understand the workflow transitions from the Geppetto and Mannequin systems to the Animation Editor.

Note

You can't convert your Geppetto and Mannequin assets over to the Animation Editor. You must recreate your content for the Animation Editor. For more information, see Animation Editor (EMotionFX) in the Amazon Lumberyard User Guide.

Content Pipeline

Export and Import Content

When working with Geppetto and Mannequin, your assets are exported using the Maya or Max Exporters, or saved as FBX files and imported into Amazon Lumberyard. If you use the FBX Settings tool, this creates an .assetinfo file that stores the metadata for your FBX import settings.

The Animation Editor supports only the FBX workflow. All of your characters and animations must be saved as FBX files, and then loaded into Lumberyard and adjusted through the FBX Settings tool. Animation Editor uses the .assetinfo metadata file for the FBX import settings.

For more information, see Working with the FBX Settings.

Content File Formats

The following are the content file formats that are required to work with Geppetto:

  • .skin – Skinned mesh

  • .chr – Skeleton

  • .mtl – Material

  • .i_caf – Intermediate animation if exported from Maya or Max

  • .caf – Compressed animation file

The following content file formats are required to work with the Animation Editor. These are the only file formats that the FBX Settings tool creates for the Animation Editor.

  • .actor – Contains the skeleton and skin information

  • .motion – Contains the animation

  • .mtl – Material files are created when the .fbx file has at least one material, which is the case for most DCC applications.

Note

To make changes to the material, go to the Material Editor. After you make changes to the material, the .mtl file is no longer a child of the .fbx file and the .mtl is a sibling in the source directory of the .fbx file. You can make other changes to the .mtl with a text editor or the Material Editor.

For more information, see Animation Editor File Types.

Lumberyard Created Files

In Geppetto, there are additional files that are created in Lumberyard:

  • .animsettings – Created when importing .i_caf file.

  • .CDF – Character definition file, which is a combination of a .chr file and at least one .skin and .mtl file.

  • .chrparams – This file works with the .chr file to determine where animations are located, IK setup, and so on.

  • SkeletonList.xml – Used for importing .i_caf files.

  • .dba – Animation databases or sets.

  • .animevents – Animation events.

  • .bspace – Blend spaces or parametric blending.

  • .comb – Combined blend spaces.

In Mannequin, there are additional files that are created in Lumberyard:

  • Preview.xml – Preview setup file.

  • ControllerDefs.xml – Controller definitions file.

  • .adb – Animation database file for Mannequin.

  • FragmentIDs.xml – Fragment ID file.

  • Tags.xml – Tag definition file.

  • Sequence.xml – Animation sequences.

In the Animation Editor, the following files are created in Lumberyard:

  • .motionset – Contains your motions (animations). A set of animations is called a motion set.

  • .animgraph – Contains your animation networks. This is also known as an animation graph.

  • .emfxworkspace – Your workspace file, which stores the character with its reference to the animation graph and motion sets.

Content Pipeline Comparison Table

Geppetto and Mannequin Animation Editor

Content into Lumberyard

  • FBX

    • Creates .assetinfo metadata file

  • Maya Exporter

  • Max Exporter

Content into Lumberyard

  • FBX

    • Creates .assetinfo metadata file

Content file formats for Lumberyard

  • .skin

  • .chr

  • .mtl

  • .i_caf

  • .caf

Content file formats for Lumberyard

  • .actor

  • .motion

  • .mtl

Lumberyard created files

  • Geppetto

    • .animsettings

    • .chrparams

    • .CDF

    • SkeletonList.xml

    • .animevents

    • .bspace

    • .comb

  • Mannequin

    • Preview.xml

    • ControllerDefs.xml

    • .adb

    • FragmentIDs.xml

    • Tags.xml

    • Sequence.xml

Lumberyard created files

  • .motionset

  • .animgraph

  • .emfxworkspace

Character and Animation Setup

Character Setup

In Geppetto, character setup involves creating the .CDF (character definition file) that references a .chr (skeleton) and has at least one .skin (skinned mesh) attached. This is the workflow that you follow to assemble the various parts of an animated character in one place in Lumberyard.

In the Animation Editor, your character is the .actor that is created from the FBX file that contains a skeleton, bind pose, and skinned mesh information. There is no additional assembly required to create a character in Lumberyard.

Animation Setup

In Geppetto, if you use the Maya or Max exporter to create your animations, you have the additional step of importing the animation to your character in Geppetto to convert the .i_caf files to .caf files. Also, you must add your character’s skeleton to the SkeletonList.xml file, so that animations can be imported and used on that specific skeleton.

In this workflow, animations can't be shared across multiple skeletons, even if the skeletons are identical. This results in duplicate animations for multiple characters with identical skeletons. You also need to make a .chrparams file, so that the engine can find which folder it can import the animations for that skeleton. You can also set up a .dba (database of animations) to load different sets of animations for a character. When you set up animation events, you need an .animevents file that was also referenced from the .chrparams. You can then use your character and animations in Geppetto for your animation network setup.

In the Animation Editor, the .motion file created from the FBX animation file is the base animation, (also called a motion) in the new animation system. A .motion file is not exclusively tied to a specific character, skeleton, or motion set, and can be shared across multiple .actor files and added to multiple motion sets.

A .motionset file is a library of .motion files that can be loaded to an .actor file. A motion set is like an animation database or set. Each actor should have at least one motion set. Motion events are stored in the .assetinfo metadata file for the FBX file in which the .motion file is created.

Your animation network setup is stored in an .animgraph file, which can be a combination of state machines and/or blend trees.

Component Entities

In the Geppetto and Mannequin workflow with the component entity system, you add the Skinned Mesh component that references the .CDF to your character.

You can apply animations to the entity with the Skinned Mesh component in two ways:

In the Animation Editor workflow with the component entity system, you add the Actor component that references the .actor file to your character.

You can apply animations to the entity in two ways:

  • Add the Simple Motion component to play motions directly.

  • Add the Animgraph component to reference an .animgraph file.

For more information, see Animation Editor Components.

Component Entities Comparison Table

Geppetto and Mannequin Animation Editor

Component entities

Component entities

For a list of components, see Component Reference in the Amazon Lumberyard User Guide.