I've decided to release some tips for some of you who still animate using Milkshape 3D.
I've also provided a sample animation for you to check out.
USP Simple Reload Animation
(Sorry, no pictures at the meantime.)
Step 1 (Importing):When you import an SMD, make sure you uncheck first the auto-smooth located at the "Groups" tab.
Then a dialog box pop-up, un-check "Rename Bones" (It'll cause you problems when compiling because it changes the names of bones on a rig).
Step 2 (Rig):Make sure the rig makes you feel comfortable.
How? I'm comfortable at something like:
CS default rigs. Something like that, or I'm more comfortable with rigs that has a certain joint which controls all of the joints, and makes it easier to rotate the whole rig or move all the bones at the same time.
Step 3 (Animating Style):Think of something unique, or a good reload and draw style. Like Wildbill, an aerial mag load.
I do animate fast reloads, not slow ones. (as you can see most of my animations).
Step 4 (Giving Details):Of course you want to express what you really want the viewers to see, rather than ending in a robotic animations which is today, not good.
When you shake hands with another person, there are two joints rotating. The wrist and the elbow joints.
Same thing when you reload a pistol or any type of gun. When you want to let the magazine fall out of the pistol, you shake it off, but not that hard. Make the two joints move (wrist and elbow). Don't forget to specify the thumb. From what I meant there, you make the thumb hit the mag release.
For example, you want to hit the magrelease on the 15th frame, so you will go to, let's say, 10th frame. Why? Make the thumb prepare to hit the magrelease by moving it away from the magrelease, and when it goes to the 15th frame, rotate the thumb to go near the magrelease button.
Another example is firing a gun. Watch some videos in YouTube. Since we don't really deal with physics on Milkshape 3D, we're making an imaginary physics! You imitate what real life recoil does. Sample: You make the whole rig go a little bit upward then backwards, then you make the wrist twist so it makes the recoil look more lively.
Step 5 (REVIEW):Review your animations. Sometimes, simple animations looks good and neat. You don't need to be fancy, but if you want to then, go. Review, review, review. Check the imaginary recoil if it really looks good in-game. Compare your animations to other animations made by others. What makes his/her animations look good? Do I need to animate in a lot of frames to make my animations more in detail? or add some different styles? It's up to you. But remember, this is a community. There are people who can help you in your animations, all you need to do is listen to them and apply it to the next animations you'll be making.
Please, this is for Milkshape 3D users. If you have something against this tutorial, please STAHP. I know there are alot of good animators who use 3DsMax and Blender. But I will share what I've learned in MS3D for newbies who still use or want to use MS3D.
I hope it helps alot of beginners. Thanks!