#1 09-06-2017 7:02 pm

From: California
Registered: 10-28-2011
Posts: 1123

Deleting Joint Ends in Maya?

I am making a rig for the Unity game engine and usually I delete the joint ends in Maya to make the outliner cleaner and skinning simpler before I export. Somebody I know mentioned it might be better to keep them and then cull them out once in Unity. I usually orient first then delete them, but is there any major reason for keeping them in Maya then getting rid of them once in Unity? If they don't have any skin weight, do I have to get rid of them at all? This is all in service of performance, but I am not sure if it matters. Ideally I could just delete them because it makes the outliner nice and clean. Any advice is always appreciated, thanks!



#2 09-06-2017 10:04 pm

Upright Citizen
Registered: 06-16-2007
Posts: 1290
Karmojo: 48
Power Voter

Re: Deleting Joint Ends in Maya?

I don't have experience going from Maya to Unity, but I always leave my joint ends and give them an identifier similar to "blahblah_toe_end".  Just to avoid anything unwanted.  No reason not to really.

"Frustration is the handmaiden of creativity" ~ Chuck Jones



#3 09-07-2017 12:01 am

From: Dublin, Ireland
Registered: 02-22-2008
Posts: 769
Karmojo: 79

Re: Deleting Joint Ends in Maya?

It's a bit of a 'it depends' thing - if you have to keep joint count super low (if you have a game that's destined for mobile platforms that's usually a factor) then yeah it's useful to get rid of as many as possible. I rigged for a Hololens game earlier this year and we had to keep the skeletons super simple so that performance would be decent, so I got rid of tip joints, twist joints, even fingers on background characters. If you're rigging for a console/PC then the limits are a lot less.. limiting.

Last edited by Horganovski (09-07-2017 12:02 am)



#4 09-08-2017 7:26 pm

Upstanding Citizen
From: Schell Games
Registered: 07-16-2007
Posts: 1723
Karmojo: 38

Re: Deleting Joint Ends in Maya?

Joint count really isn't a huge factor in terms of performance (yes it does come into play...but deleting 10 joints or adding 10 won't really change a whole lot). What is though (regarding characters & rigs) are draw calls & max influence per vertex. Maya defaults to max influence of 5 bones per vertex so if performance is a concern you may want to drop this down. For draw calls, you want to make sure your character isn't made up of multiple pieces, combining where you can will help performance. It also depends how many characters you have on screen at once.

As for joint ends, if they aren't skinned to anything...delete em. And I would delete them in source (Maya) and not in Unity...so you can keep things consistent between source & game

Kyle Kenworthy
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