Live Action HAPPY WHEELS: Irresponsible Dad in Real Life

I’d like to share some still images from a recent project. The characters and obstacles were all rendered in Blender Internal. The background was shot separately, then stabilized and sped up to match the speed of the animation in Blender.

The project took over three months to complete, as I had many things to learn and was working in my spare time. By far, the most difficult task was creating the Irresponsible Dad character. I had next to no experience with armatures and using constraints with them.

Today I will be uploading the .blend to Blendswap for people to look at and play with. Once I see it has been approved, I will explain how it works, and am happy to answer any questions!

The Final Animation:

Really great James… I liked the “your a bad father” message. It would be interesting to see a “making of” on this one. Nice job to you and your crew.

Thanks, harleynut! I’ve put a few images together to show a little more about how we made the video.

Individual body parts were shot on greenscreen, to save time in masking. I actually did this twice, once on a sunny day, and once on an overcast day, since the background plate hadn’t been shot yet and I didn’t know what the weather would be like when it was. Fortunately, It ended up being sunny.

Once everything was masked out, it was saved as a PNG and loaded onto a plane as a shadeless material in Blender. I knew I wanted to keep the rig as simple as possible to animate, so I setup the dad character to be constrained to the bike, and the bike is constrained to a simple “master” object. Moving the master moves everything, including making the legs move, the pedal and tires spine, and the head bob up and down.

It was my first time rigging anything, and that was by far the most difficult thing for me. I’m sure there are better ways to do it.

Here is a link to download the .blend file for yourself:

Wow… a very interesting way of doing this, thanks for posting… I’m going to take a look at your blendfile this evening.

Glad you found it interesting! I recommend using the same version of Blender I used to make it, 2.66a. When I loaded the file into an older version (2.63 I believe) the edges of the transparency in the PNG textures didn’t look correct. I’m not sure what the cause was.

I’ll be starting a new WIP thread in a few days, documenting the progress of our next video, if you’d like to see that!

Cool…I will love to see more videos with different levels.:smiley:

Thanks, ulquiorraad! Based on the number of likes and comments the video received, we will definitely look into doing another level sometime in the future!

Interesting bit of info, the actual creator of the game (Jim Bonacci) liked and commented on the video, so I was very pleased about that!

haha… really cool! Great work.

Haha! Love it! :smiley:

damn that was hilarious!! :smiley:

Great idea, and hilarious too!

Thank you zimpel, VickyM72, axelredfield, and OnyxIdol! I truly appreciate all your support!

You got my support all day, you are welcome! :slight_smile: Thanks for your support as well! :smiley:

Great and hilarious, the music is addictive too. Thanks for sharing your clever technique.

LOL! That was amazing! Great job! That Dillard’s looks strangely familiar… You don’t happen to live in Texas, do you?

Thanks, Vicky! Funny coincidence, I was doing a google image search last week and your deviantart came up in the results. I said, “hey, I know her!”

SR3d- Thanks! I had that Spazzmatica Polka song stuck in my head for a few days. Very catchy.

hrodi007- Thank you! It’s actually not in Texas, but rather just outside Port Saint Lucie, FL. I didn’t know they had Dillards’ that far from here!

Lolxxx… The blood effect is epic. It is looking damn too realistic :slight_smile: :smiley: And yes. Here’s a site I found over at Google that offers happy wheels game for free: <-- Tell me if it’s worth it :slight_smile:

Thanks, Allan! You may have noticed that the fluid sim used for the blood effect at the end stops abruptly mid-air. This is because Blender won’t allow you to start a fluid simulation at a specific frame (other than 0, of course!). So, my workaround for that was to run the simulation for the number of frames required, bake the cache, then manually rename the three files generated for each frame. Basically, you just have to rename them to the frame you actually want them to appear on. So, I ended up with around 50 or so files to rename. Once I’d done all that, rendered and viewed the animation at full resolution, then I realized there were some blobs still hanging in mid-air. But, my PC is pretty under powered, and I still had a lot of work ahead of me to finish the video, so I just decided to move on.

Having the ability to start a fluid sim on a specific frame would be a great little time saver! I don’t code though; would it be difficult to incorporate into the current solver?