Tutorials on Maya animation

Hi all.

I’m a fairly new Maya 2008 user. I’ve successfully exported quite a few Meshes into Panda, but I’m ready to step it up a notch to fully animated models.

I’ve been reading the Manual wiki pages and they seem like they make sense, but I don’t understand what technique is being used for animating.

As of right now I’m doing basic keyframing on the timeline, but from what I understand that’s not efficient for a multipart model.

What sort of methods you all use/recommend for Maya animating for Panda models?

Aside: Ever consider making a forum devoted to ‘content creation?’ Might be handy since your art pipeline is so solid.


Keyframing is the normal animation technique. I don’t know any other. I also don’t know why that would be less than efficient.


I’ve created an actor with keyframes logically split into sections.
In Maya I’ve created ‘Clips’ for both of these animations:

  • Frames 1-10 = animation A
  • Frames 20-30 = animation B

When I preview them in the exporter I see it running through all the animations… but from what I can tell these animations are not included in the exported egg and I don’t quite understand why.

I also don’t understand how the exporter is supposed to work. It seems to export the entire timeline as one animation which has the same name as the .mb file, and seems to ignore my keyframes entirely

I think I would prefer not to export multiple eggs with animations in them, unless… this is what was intended? What is the workflow process?

I don’t know anything about how the mel script plugin works, but I know that it basically calls the maya2egg command-line tool, and I do know how that works.

Perhaps the mel script plugin will not produce an animation file unless you check the appropriate box. In Panda, there are three different kinds of egg files that you might extract from your Maya scene: a static model, an animatable model, or a table of animation data. You probably have to select the appropriate options to get the kind of egg file you want.

With maya2egg, you can specify the name of the egg file you want it to produce. You can also specify the frame range when you’re exporting animation data, so you can extract each of your different animation ranges into a different egg file, which is the way that Panda is really intended to be used. However, it’s not required that you use it this way; you can also extract your entire timeline into one big egg file, and just play the appropriate frame subranges within your Python code for a particular animation.

Note that normally there is one egg file for your model, and a different egg file for the animation; but these can also be combined if you like to minimize the number of egg files you use for some reason.


That’s what I thought… ok then I just need to look at my code.

I guess it really does make sense to do multiple eggs per animation. That will make fine tuning much easier.

Thanks David.