How to Port Brawl Animations over Sm4sh Skeletons

A Tutorial for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

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Update 6
  • Minor tutorial overhaul, which removes the fat, due to improvements in the program known as Smash Forge.
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Update 5
  • Fixed an error with the alternate way to open the Script Editor in the Maya steps.
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The time has come, the time is now. Get ready to port Brawl animations into Sm4sh properly. 

About: What this tutorial aims to do is teach people how to get an animation from Super Smash Bros. Brawl working on a Super Smash Bros. for Wii U model.

[UPDATE] This tutorial has been updated to reflect the new modding tools. This tutorial no longer requires the use of several programs and files, including 3DS Max.

[NOTICE] This tutorial is highly not recommended for those who don't know their way around BrawlBox, Smash Forge, and Autodesk Maya. I won't teach you how to use these programs.

Program Requirements:
-BrawlBox (Recommended at least v0.71 and up).
-Smash Forge (Latest Version).
-Autodesk Maya (Recommended at least 2012 and up).
-BrawlBox 2 Maya (included with zip file).

Fire Requirements:
-Maya script for bone constraining [HierarchyConstrain_Good_Brawl2Sm4sh.py (included with zip file)].
-Additional Maya script for animations with scaling (grow and shrink) [CopyScaleKeyframes_Supreme_Brawl2Sm4sh.py (included with zip file)].
-Brawl model + animation files [Fit*Fighter*00.pac and Fit*Fighter*MotionEtc.pac (*Fighter* is the name of the Brawl Fighter. For example, Mario's files are named FitMario00.pac and FitMarioMotionEtc.pac)].
-Sm4sh model files [model.nud and model.vbn (both files must be in the same folder)].

Zip File in Question (Updated as of June 6th, 2017): http://www.mediafire.com/file/221eoe86z2ttihd/Brawl_2_Sm4sh_Animation_Pack.zip

Restrictions:
-Bones must match up to each other before running the script.
-Bones must have the same rotation orders and axes.

Credits:
TheShyGuy: For creating the original Maya script [its original intention was to port Sm4sh animations onto Brawl skeletons (the included script just swaps Brawl and Sm4sh)].
Draco_The: For creating the additional script
Developers of Smash Forge: For implementing the tools necessary to make this possible.
Dantarion: For creating BrawlBox 2 Maya.

This tutorial will be split up into 4 parts. BrawlBox, BrawlBox 2 Maya, Smash Forge, and Maya usage.

Part 1: BrawlBox

All you need to do is open your Fit*Fighter*00.pac in BrawlBox, and export as DAE (right click on the MDL0, and export as DAE). That's all there is to it. You can close out of BrawlBox now.

Part 2: BrawlBox 2 Maya usage.

Open the "run_Edit this to use your directories.bat" file in any text editor, and edit the directories in the file to where your directories are for your Fit*Fighter*00.pac and your Fit*Fighter*MotionEtc.pac. Save, and run the bat file. A folder will be created inside the BrawlBox2Maya directory with the file name of the Brawl character you exported from (Example: If you used BrawlBox 2 Maya with Mario, then the folder will be named FitMario00). This folder will contain many files. The only file(s) you need is/are the ANIM file(s) of the animation(s) you want to port.
BAT File Editing Example: http://i.imgur.com/uAtkfuT.png

Part 3: Smash Forge

All you need to do is open Smash Forge, open your Sm4sh Fighter's NUD with it (make sure both the model.nud and model.vbn files are in the same folder when opening), and export as DAE (File > Save > Change File to DAE). You're done with Smash Forge for now. At this point in time, keep Forge open is optional, as you're going to need it in order to import your finished ported animation.

Part 4: Maya usage.

Note: Make sure the .anim plugin is loaded. You can do this by going to Settings/Preferences > Plug-in Manager, and making sure the animImportExport.mll plug-in is set to both load and auto-load. Refresh the scene afterward.
Plugins Window: http://i.imgur.com/MOpTQv0.png

Note 2: Make sure your Maya scene is configured to run at 60 FPS. You can do this by going to Window > Settings/Preferences > Preferences > Settings, and changing Time to NTSC Field (60 FPS). Save the options. Once saved, you'll see the Frame number set to 2.50 on the bottom left, change this to 1.
Settings Prefrences Window: http://i.imgur.com/ndt4jra.png
How the scene should look after configuring: http://i.imgur.com/A1MdHid.png

4a.) Importing the Sm4sh model

Start by importing the Sm4sh DAE first. The default DAE import settings should work just fine. Just make sure the scaling of the TransN bone is 1,1,1.

Once the DAE is imported, you'll need to rename the Sm4sh specific bones to their Brawl counterparts using the Outliner (Window > Outliner).

I've provided a list below of the basic bones, alongside their Brawl counterparts. It's up to you to figure out the Fighter specific bone names.

Bone Name List (Brawl -> Sm4sh):
XRotN -> RotN
L1stNa -> LIndex1N
L1stNb -> LIndex2N
L2ndNa -> LMiddle1N
L2ndNb -> LMiddle2N
L3rdNa -> LRing1N
L3rdNb -> LRing2N
L4thNa -> LPinky1N
L4thNb -> LPinky2N
LThumbNa -> LThumb1N
LThumbNb -> LThumb2N
R1stNa -> RIndex1N
R1stNb -> RIndex2N
R2ndNa -> RMiddle1N
R2ndNb -> RMiddle2N
R3rdNa -> RRing1N
R3rdNb -> RRing2N
R4thNa -> RPinky1N
R4thNb -> RPinky2N
RThumbNa -> RThumb1N
RThumbNb -> RThumb2N

Once you're done with that, select the TransN bone, go to Modify > Prefix Hierarchy Names..., and apply the "Sm4sh_" prefix (without quotations) to the Sm4sh skeleton. This is to prevent bone conflicts when the Brawl DAE is imported.

4b.) Importing the Brawl model.

All you need to do is just import the Brawl DAE. Like the Sm4sh DAE, default settings should work, but this time, the scaling of the TopN bone must be 1,1,1.

Note: If you get an error saying that the version of your DAE file isn't supported, you should be able to ignore it.

4c.) Constraining the skeletons.

Open the Script Editor window (icon in the very bottom right of the Maya window, or alternatively, go to Window > General Editors > Script Editor), and change the script format from MEL to Python. Load "HierarchyConstrain_Good_Brawl2Sm4sh.py" (File > Load Script), and select the root bones of the Brawl and Sm4sh skeletons with the Outlier (in this case, the bones would be TopN, and Sm4sh_TransN). Run the script (click the singular blue arrow icon in the top right of the Script Editor window).
Maya Script Window: http://i.imgur.com/x9cEC78.png

Note: If your animation has scaling in it, in the Python tab, scroll down to line 34, and change the matchScale flag from True to False. This will be important later on.

4d.) Importing the animation.

Make sure every single Brawl bone is selected. You can do this by selecting the TopN bone, and going to Edit > Select Hierarchy. Now import the .anim file of your choice from step 2 (File > Import). Play the animation to make sure both models animate correctly. Importing the animation (ANIM): http://i.imgur.com/TroY39m.png

Note: If the animation is shorter/longer than 60 Frames, you'll need to decrease/increase the Frame count of the timeline to allow the full playthrough of the animation. You can do this by decreasing/increasing the first 60 value on the bottom right to the amount of Frames your animation has.
Example (Before): http://i.imgur.com/HQQoMwS.png
Example (After): http://i.imgur.com/siR2aUU.png

Note: If your animation has scaling in it and you followed the instruction note from step 4c, you'll now be opening the CopyScaleKeyframes_Supreme_Brawl2Sm4sh.py script in the Script editor. Select the Brawl TopN and the Sm4sh TransN before executing the script. Your animation should now also have scaling.

4e.) Baking the animation.

Next, you need to bake the animation. Since the Sm4sh animation format allegedly doesn't use keyframes, you should be able to just bake everything, so select every single relevant Sm4sh bone (i.e.: Any bone that has animation.), and go to Edit > Keys > Bake Simulation, but don't click on it. Instead, click on the box next to it. When the Bake Simulation Options window pops up, make sure your settings match what's in this image: http://imgur.com/Ej0TP1i. Click Bake afterward, and wait as Maya bakes your animation.

4f.) Bone renaming and the final .anim export.

Click on the Brawl root bone (TopN), and give its Hierarchy a prefix. You can do this by going to Modify > Prefix Heirarchy Names, and using any prefix (this is to prevent name conflicts when removing the prefix from the Sm4sh bones.

Next, go to Modify > Search and Replace Names, and make sure the settings match this image: http://imgur.com/ovL1ISI (make sure "Replace with:" has just a space in it). Click Apply.

Once that's done, you can finish this tutorial by selecting every Sm4sh bone, and exporting the selected objects (File > Export Selected) as .anim (animExport).
Exporting the animation (ANIM): http://i.imgur.com/vdX9EJp.png

Congratulations. You now have your Brawl animation ported over your Sm4sh skeletion for preperation of animation modding in Sm4sh.
Completed Example: https://gfycat.com/NeglectedImmenseGopher

If you run into any issues, go back to the step you're stuck on, and make sure to read everything and repeat previous steps if need be. If you still can't figure it out, or are just getting it wrong, don't hesitate to post for help.

Posts

  • 28d
    Penthesileap avatar
    Member Joined 1y
    HELP!! , this use to work on my old computer but now when i do it i get this error and then the exe crashes

    \BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya>BrawlBox2Maya.exe a "\BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya\FitPit00.pac" "\BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya\FitPitMotionEtc.pac"

    Reading Model from  \BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya\FitPit00.pac

    Reading Animations from \BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya\FitPitMotionEtc.pac

    Outputting files to ./

    Unhandled Exception: System.NullReferenceException: Object reference not set to an instance of an object.

       at BrawlBox2Maya.Program.Main(String[] args) in \BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya\Program.cs:line 28

    \BrawlBox2Maya\BrawlBox2Maya>pause

    Press any key to continue . . .
    Bananite
  • 2mo
    Tabuu Forte Akugun avatar
    Tabuu Forte Akugun avatar Back to work
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    Hey man, I followed this tut and the video version plenty of times. I'm trying to paste a PM Giga Bowser damage animation over the Sm4sh skeleton. In 5 parts: lhand, rhand, main, pt1, pt2. They export fine but when it's time for playback (importing them all into Forge or even in-game, not all parts play. Main and pt2 don't get animated.
    Evil Overlord
  • 7mo
    Vishera avatar
    Vishera Offline
    Member Joined 11mo
    Would it be possible for someone to make a video tutorial for this? It would help us people less familiar with the programs and allow for much more people to make more advanced mods
    Dank Memer
  • 9mo
    Notshane avatar
    Notshane Offline
    Member Joined 1y
    Posted by KingJigglypuff

    You can get a free 3 year license if you get the Student Version.
    I just got it all figured out today. But, thanks anyway.

    I do hope somebody makes a video for this at some point in the future, though. I don't need it to be as intricate as them editing every frame of the character since I heard that's a long process, but for editing somebody like Wario, I have been unable to find most of what you have listed in the section that requires me to rename bones, other than XRotN to RotN. Also, for Wario, I simply used a skin I found on the Brawl Vault since the one I had in my mod only had FitWario and FitWarioMotionEtc since the skins are already in the game, so I am uncertain if it will work the same way.

    But, all the information you have listed here is very, very helpful. It's also very smart to use picture previews, since I know with programs like Maya and the liking, many newbies would be confused on where to find this stuff...such as myself.

    So, thank you very much for this tutorial.
    Bananite
  • 9mo
    KingJigglypuff avatar
    Member Joined 2y
    Posted by Notshane

    This will be a piece of ca-

    (notices Maya is a program that requires nearly two hundred dollars a month to use)

    Welp...there goes that dream.You can get a free 3 year license if you get the Student Version.
    You can get a free 3 year license if you get the Student Version.
    Bananite
  • 9mo
    Notshane avatar
    Notshane Offline
    Member Joined 1y
    This will be a piece of ca-

    (notices Maya is a program that requires nearly two hundred dollars a month to use)

    Welp...there goes that dream.
    Bananite
  • 10mo
    KingJigglypuff avatar
    Member Joined 2y
    Posted by FieryX

    Posted by KingJigglypuff

    Posted by Mayro

    Does this script only support a certain number of frames?

    I'm trying to import this animation

    I made sure the bones are renamed correctly, and in Maya the animation plays normally through the beginning, but then at the end of the animation, the bones start to glitch

    The animation last 570 frames
    By the looks of it, something might have went wrong during baking. Go through the entire process again, and see if the issue still persists.

    The model glitches like that once I import it, not when I begin to bake it
    It's probably an issue with the animation itself then. I'd still try re-obtaining the animation, just in case something went wrong while importing.
    Bananite
  • 10mo
    Xenia avatar
    Xenia Saving Peach
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    Posted by KingJigglypuff

    Posted by Mayro

    Does this script only support a certain number of frames?

    I'm trying to import this animation

    I made sure the bones are renamed correctly, and in Maya the animation plays normally through the beginning, but then at the end of the animation, the bones start to glitch

    The animation last 570 frames
    By the looks of it, something might have went wrong during baking. Go through the entire process again, and see if the issue still persists.

    The model glitches like that once I import it, not when I begin to bake it
    Ryu main
  • 10mo
    KingJigglypuff avatar
    Member Joined 2y
  • 10mo
    Xenia avatar
    Xenia Saving Peach
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Credits

Proof-Reader
Large_Leader
Member Joined 2y
Proof-Reader of the original draft of this tutorial
Script Creators
TheShyGuy
Creating the constraining script for Maya
Draco_The
Creating the Scale keyframe script for Maya
Program Creators
Dantarion
Creator of BrawlBox 2 Maya
Kyral
Original author of BrawlBox
BlackJax96
Continuation of BrawlBox development
jam1garner
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Smash Forge lead programmer
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401 points Ranked 10652nd
Smash Forge lead programmer

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KingJigglypuff
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