Clothes and Armor rigging problems

Hello everyone, sorry if this shouldn’t be posted here but I’m kinda desperate for solutions. I’ve started learning Blender a couple of weeks back. I modeled a character and now I’m trying to animate it, but no matter much I’ve tried I just can’t solve the rigging.

The issue is, it has quite a few clothes/accesories/pieces of armor, and I just can’t get it to work properly.

Here’s a couple images to go with the text

The first issue is the clipping. Whenever I try posing, some objects clip through others. I tried adjusting the object’s meshes/size/etc but it just works for one pose and then not for another, so that doesn’t solve it.

The second issue is the mesh deforming quite horribly whenever I pose it . While I’m sure a couple of this deformities could be solved by better weight painting, I just can’t seem to do it no matter how much I try painting and repainting. I’ve been having this issue from the start but I figured my mesh was just too low poly, so I increased the polygons with subdivision surface and tinkered around with the topology to try and make it more posing friendly, and that made it better, but it’s clearly not enough.

Final pic shows a mix of both problems . The belt has been a huge problem area. Lots of little parts and I can’t get it to bend nicely either.

I’m putting a link to the blend file if you care to take a peek.

I tried to solve it myself for way longer than I’d like to admit and I’m getting pretty desperate and frustrated at this point, so I hope someone can give me a hand. Thank you!

Most of the clipping issues arise from the solidify modifier that you already applied… It doesn’t look like you enabled self-collisions. You might have to go in and delete some of the interior faces of the armor to stop the collisions as you don’t have access to the solidify modifier.
Just doing that took care of all the collisions in the pants…

Looking at your images, not your file, because it’s not very convenient to open Blender right now for me:

The first thing to do to deal with clipping issues is to delete things that should never show up. You don’t need an interior mesh; you likely don’t need surface under your plates. If you’re concerned about keeping these around for some other purpose, you can use a mask modifier or a transparent material for them.

When you have something hard and rigid, and you want it to stay hard and rigid, you need to make sure that the entire thing has identical weights. So for each plate, select the vertices of the plate, make sure a central-ish vert is the active selection, and then hit the “copy” button on sidebar/items/weights to make all selected verts have the exact same weight as the actively selected vert.

Now, in your case, that’s not going to solve all problems, but there isn’t really a great solution to all the problems here. You have rigid plates that slide past each other-- an essentially physical process, that you’re not going to solve with rigging/weighting alone. In some cases like this, it’s possible to create additional bones and constraints to give a kind of pseudo-collision, but I don’t think your shapes permit that.

Which leaves you two options to get everything perfect. Either you set it up as a rigid body system to get good collision, or you create a corrective shapekey everytime you have clipping when you pose it.

Or, you can say, “I guess it’s not going to be perfect.” If you were to retopo the mesh into a single manifold mesh-- basically, make a wrap around everything, then bake textures/normals to this wrap-- you could eliminate clipping entirely (or almost entirely, there’s always going to be self intersection with big rotations), but at the cost of your rigid plates deforming rather than being particularly rigid.