One action with Armature animation and Blend Shapes working together?


I’m having some issues creating some character animations for a game:

  • I have made 4 actions: (1) Waking up; (2) Idle; (3) Begin Attacking; and (4) Attacking Loop.
    In those, I animated the armature of the character. It’s all fine, but I would like to add animations for the mesh blend shapes as well.

  • I have made 2 blend shapes: (1) Close/Open eyes; and (2) Close/Open mouth.
    When I try to animate those blend shapes, I can’t manage to put the keyframes on the same actions from the armature. It seems each action is like a child of certain object, and it cannot be shared.

I want to import it into Unity Engine later, and have 4 animations to use. I cannot have 8 animations (4 for the armature and 4 for the blend shapes) to play together on the game engine. I would need both armature and blend shapes being on a single animation.

Is there any way to have both Shape Keys and Armature animations on the same Action?


For this purpose you can best use drivers. Create extra bones and use their transform to drive the blendshapes.
Alternatively you can create custom properties to drive the blendshapes (those properties need to be part of a bone though, in order to stay within the same action when animated; otherwise you’d run into the same problem again)

This will carry over into unity automatically if you are using version 5.6 or later. If you use an earlier version, consider creating more animations and using multiple animator layers in the engine.

Hope that helps :slight_smile: Btw, if you don’t know how to set a driver, there is alot of easy and quick tutorials online.

Uhm, that seems to do the job. I will look into how to ser the drivers then. Thanks a lot!