Ragdoll Dynamics

by Imbalance Ltd. in Addons


Overview

Ragdoll is a real-time physics solver for animators originally built for Autodesk Maya and now available to Blender!

Available for Windows and Linux (MacOS coming soon!)

Install

The Blender add-on is a bridge between Blender and Ragdoll Core, as such you'll need both of these up and running in order to use Ragdoll in Blender.

  1. Download the Blender Add-on
  2. Download Ragdoll Core

The add-on is a standard `.zip` file you install via Blenders Add-ons page, like any add-on. On Windows, Ragdoll Core is a `.msi` file you double-click to install. On Linux, place the contents of RagdollCore.zip in your home directory, for example:

cd ~/unzip
RagdollCore-linux-2024.03.07.zip


For advanced use, You can customise the location of Ragdoll Core via the  environment variable.

export RAGDOLL_CORE_PATH=/home/marcus/ragdolldynamics/core/2024.03.07/lib
./blender

Free Version

This free version of Ragdoll is a fully functional and highly performant character physics solver for Blender. Upon first launch, it will automatically kick off a 30-day trial of the professional version which enables recording of your simulations back onto your animation controls or bones. Past the 30 days, Ragdoll will continue functioning normally, minus the ability to record. To keep using the professional features past the 30 days you'll need a licence, see our pricing page for details.

https://ragdolldynamics.com/pricing-nc

For studios and teams, see the studio page.

https://ragdolldynamics.com/pricing-commercial#billing=subscription&licence=node


Background

    Started development in 2021 by animator/programmer Marcus Ottosson, Ragdoll has since been adopted by just about every large visual effects company in the world and several AAA and indie games studios too.

    • Weta (e.g. Avatar, Planet of the Apes)
    • Double Negative (e.g. Furious X)
    • Framestore (e.g. Harry Potter)
    • Imageworks (e.g. Spiderverse)
    • Digital Domain (e.g. Tron Legacy)
    • Kojima Productions (e.g. Death Stranding)
    • CD Projekt Red (e.g. Cyberpunk 2077)
    • Deck Nine Games (e.g. Life is Strange)

    If you've been to the theatres at any point in the past few years, it is highly likely you've witnessed Ragdoll-powered animations!

    Now we're extending the reach of Ragdoll to those outside of the Maya domain, to you lovely bunch in the Blender camp. Our hope is that more animators will be able to benefit from Ragdoll, whilst also encouraging new animators to join the field with access to more tools to help simplify the animation process.


    Why Ragdoll?

    Character animation is hard.

    You've got the techincal barrier of understanding your computer and software, which on its own is hard, but then you've got the artistic choices involved in communicating your story. There is poses and there is timing - critical to any performance. But then you have momentum, contacts and a sense of weight.

    Equally critical but boring.

    Your audience has a keen eye for things like momentum and contacts, often without realising it. It feels either right or wrong. And it is incredibly hard - as an animator - to get it right.

    This is where Ragdoll can help.

    Animation is all about breathing life into inanimate objects, but also lifelessness. It's a spectrum, and Ragdoll can almost entirely handle a large part of this spectrum on its own.

    0% Life                                                             100% Life|----------------------------------------------------------------------|^                                       ^|                                       ||=======================================|                  Ragdoll

    In its most simple form, Ragdoll can entirely generate lifeless animation.


    With keyframes for input, it can generate semi-lifeless animation.


    How does it work?

    Ragdoll monitors your animation and provides you with a preview of what it would look like if you let physics take the wheel.


    In this example, the blue character is your animation. It's the "guide" for the simulated version of your animation.

    Here's what it could look like in practice.


    And here's a more elaborate example, animation versus simulation towards the end.


    Points of interest.

    1. Notice how the rhino has a looping animation, that carries through into simulation
    2. Notice how contacts are handled entirely by Ragdoll
    3. Notice how simple the animation is!
    4. Notice how close the simulation is to the animation, you control how much
    Downloads 2500+
    Customer Ratings 1
    Average Rating
    Dev Fund Contributor
    Published about 2 months ago
    Blender Version 4.0, 3.6, 3.5, 3.4
    License Mit
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