Rigid body outside of Game engine

I have a bi-ped character that I am experimenting with and would like to have him push, say, a cube across a flat plane. If I want him to pull something it looks like I would need to add a bone to the hand and then use a ‘copy location’ restraint. Is it necessary to do this for each item I want him to interact with? Also, if i want him to walk up a set of stairs, do I need to watch carefully every step so he doesn’t go ‘thru them’, or is there a way to add say a rigid body on these mesh items?
Not exactly sure how to phrase the question and I didn’t attached a .blend file on purpose, (hopefully) the questions speak for themselves.

Hi sandman2,

Unfortunately, there is currently (as of Blender 2.65 r52859) no way to have a pure rigid body outside of the game engine. As such, there are two possible solutions, each with drawbacks:

  1. Create your rigid body in the game engine and perform your simulation. Then, bake the resulting simulation to keyframes. Essentially, this will add a location keyframe at every frame in your simulation (so your timeline will basically just look like a yellow barcode). The advantage of this is that you will get an accurate rigid-body simulation; however, it’s a destructive edit, like applying a modifier: you can’t go back and change it. In addition, it clutters your timeline and makes even moving the rigid body difficult.

  2. Alternatively, if you’re willing to settle for some flexibility in your body, you could use the standard Soft Body simulation with a high Damping value (max is 10, so go for that). In particular, you mention pushing a cube across a plane - if you keep your cube with only eight vertices, you can keep a fairly rigid body (because simulations work on vertices). The advantages of this method are that it’s easily editable, but obviously it is still technically a “soft” body, no matter how rigid you make it.

I’ve attached a blend file showing a cube-across-plane example with softbody. I’m using a Force Field instead of actually pushing it, just so I don’t have to animate keyframes - but you get the idea.


EDIT: I’ve started using the alpha version (2.65.10 r54399M), and it looks like there’s rigid body simulations built-in. So if you can wait a bit (or just want to go ahead with the alpha version), that’s probably your best bet. Will post video example soon.

Here’s a demo.


rigidbodysim.blend (472 KB)

Miika’s blender build has all of the essentials features for blender, including rigid body simulations in the viewport, and adaptive smoke domains

MiikaHweb - Blender Builds
example here

Thank you both! Great help!