Action Sets?

Hey Blenders!

So, I am trying a new thing here to make my workflow more efficient. Creating actions in Blender. It seems like everyone else gets it but I do not.

I have a character that doesn’t have a typically armature. In fact, the only armature bones used are in the fingers and scarf. The rest of it is all parent to child relationships, and I am animating the character is this manner because it is a mechanical moving character. (I understand that I can choose the bone to just control the object and achieve the same effect, but then there seems to be problems with IK chains in the legs).

I am generally getting the idea of creating actions. I do the steps to create a new action, and it works. Here’s the issue: Each body part has its own action, so it is impossible to get a walk cycle that encompasses all the keyfames needed for a walk cycle.

I’ve done some tests just for example. I animate the head, arms, and an empty that controls the entire character. Either arm has its own action, the head has its own action, and the empty has its own action. Now if I wanted all of those separate actions to be in just one action? Yes, I create a new one, re-name it, and move the arms, head, and empty differently, and yes, they will all be new actions with new animations. But the problem is now I have a boatload of actions that never can be compiled into one action.

I know this all sounds super confusing! I am trying my best to explain it. My problem is NOT creating new actions with new animations. I finally seem to have that down pact.

The problem is this (in simpler terms): Not being able to put the actions of separate objects into one action. The ultimate goal is to have a list of “walk” “run” “idle” etc. But my list right now is more like “shoulder” “head” “knee” etc

Does anyone know what I’m trying to get at? I have a feeling it’s because I’m animating objects and not an armature…

Hope someone can help me. The programmer I’m working with seems to have trouble getting the animation to show up in Unity. It imports but when she presses play nothing happens… I feel like I’m not doing something right on my end.

Thanks!

For merging actions together:
3D header --> Object --> Animation --> Bake Action

this merges all the keyframes of the actions in the specified frame range together. For a new action push down the keyframes (NLA-Editor) into a new action strip.