Duplicating animated characters


Here is my question, and my guess is that the solution is simple, but I have been wrestling with this for a long time now and I figured someone else would know.

I have a rigged and animated character, a goose to be precise, and I want to duplicate it so that I can have a whole flock.

I figured it’s simple: object mode, select mesh and armature, shift+D, put it where you want and there you have it.

This is OK until you press play, then your goose start’s to behave as if it’s being sucked throught the jet engine of an Airbus. I hurried and did undo before the animal activist movements got hold of what I was doing to this goose.

I tried a bunch of different ways to make the mesh not be deformed by the wrong armature, but I never got any luck.


  1. How does one make a crowd of independants out of an animated mesh


That should work.

I just tried it with three different rigs and had no problem.

Are you moving the duplicated mesh & armature together (away from the originals?)

Check that you haven’t accidentally animated / keyframed the mesh (other than any shape keys) or the armature in object mode. You really only need to be animating the armature in Pose mode.

If you’ve animated a “root” /master bone, you will have to offset the location of those keys also. … which is generally a good reason NOT to animate the root/mover bone.