NLA/Action Editor interaction Question

I’m relatively new to blender, working on a walk cycle animation. But I’m having
problems understanding the relationship between the Action Editor and the NLA

I have three actions…A ‘relax’ pose, a walk cycle and a relax-to-walk transition.

When I add the walk cycle to the NLA, I need it to start past the ‘transition’ action
in the timeline, so I drag it right to the correct frame and set a repeat count to extend
it out to the end of the timeline.

The animation all works and renders just fine.

But when I go back to the Action editor to ‘tweak’ the walk cycle, I find it’s start frame
is now the start frame of first cycle of the action in the NLA (frame 41 in this case).
IMHO, this is broken, why is it moving at all?

I would expect the Action start to remain at frame 1, while the NLA controls the timeline
location of that Action. Instead, adjusting the ‘start point’ in the NLA seems to be
messing with the first frame of the Action.

Can someone please un-confuse me? Is this how it’s supposed to work?

(I’m using 2.48 BTW)


To play back the actual Action, you need to switch to Action playback. Next to the armature’s name in the NLA editor there’s a little NLA icon (same as the window icon) if you click this it will toggle to show the Action editor icon. With this toggled to Action, the Action, rather than the NLA animation, will be played back. As for the start time, make sure the little black dot is to the left of the Action channel in the NLA, rather than the NLA strip channel you made of the action. You do this by clicking on the channel in the left side area of the NLA.

Hope this answered your question!

Ah! That was it Bugman, the little black dot! :yes:

So I guess the Action editor is showing the action from the NLA instead of the original
action if the dot is on the NLA strip. Now it makes sense. I’ll go play with it some more.