Mesh vanishes in BGE when parented?

First, please know I’m entirely new to the BGE, so I may be missing some important aspect of getting set up. However, I have searched both the manual and this section of BA & haven’t found anything related to my problem.

I have a model of a head that I’ve rigged with an armature to do some testing of lip sync and other face animations in the BGE. While initially set up using an Armature modifier, after reading some threads in this forum, I removed that and parented the rig to my mesh and use only vertex groups. It deforms fine in the UI using the Timeline or ALT+A. I made a simple 15-frame Action to be the first test, a smile. Then I set up a simple logic to play it in the BGE.

But when I hit P, the mesh isn’t visible! This is not related to Material or Mesh properties, since it was quite visible before parenting it to an armature. Also, the same thing happens with the eyeballs, which are children of a separate armature, though in this case they’re children of specific bones (rigid-body deformation).

To check my logic, I made a shape key of the smile and set it up to run using Shape Action rather than Action. After un-parenting the mesh, it’s now visible and the Shape Action logic works as expected – so should the Action, but I can’t see that!

So what dumb thing have I done to make the mesh vanish when it’s a child of an armature?

The dumb thing I did was having my face armature a child of another armature’s bone (for head & neck movements). Once I broke that parent/child relationship, the mesh appears in the BGE.

But what’s odd is that the eyeballs also have their own armature and it’s a child of the face armature. Yet when I unparent just the face armature, the eyeballs show up, even though they’re children of an armature that has an armature for a parent! Jeezum crow, this is starting to sound like a bad soap opera :smiley:

Go figure.

You can parent armatures to other armatures or bones. The children are usually not created if the parent is not created. This happens if the parent is not supported by the BGE (e.g. it is a path).

Without a blend I can’t see why it does not work in your case. It sounds like your neck armature has some problems.

Nope, just my ignorance of the GE “rules.” You’re right about the children not being “created” – I think of it as instancing by the GE – and that was the prob. I had not made the layer with the head/neck armature visible, not knowing it was part of the GE rules. One reason for this is that the facial armature uses a lot of control objects (it’s my Othello face rig), some of which show up in the GE, so I hid those layers. Now I just make them non-rendering in the Outliner, and have the armature layers enabled. Smooth sailing.

Thanks for the feedback!