Maya Day 7 – oof exporting

Today I went over this handy tutorial about exporting Maya assets as FBX then bringing them into Unreal Engine.

I learned:

There are two main ways to go about exporting as an FBX, either joining all the meshes together and doing a scene export, or exporting the objects individually. If one does a scene export then you can’t use static lighting in UE (not sure why yet) and it takes more time to setup collisions for individual objects (although I’m assuming that only applies to game design in UE).

To actually export, one needs to delete the history and freeze the transforms. Also it’s useful to set the pivot point in Maya as that’s more difficult in Unreal Engine. And apparently the typical scaling in UE is 10x smaller than that of Maya’s so it can be useful to scale up objects by about 10x before exporting. When exporting as FBX make sure to check smoothing groups.

After doing a test export I wanted to test out some more rendering in Maya, so I imported a character I made in Blender a year ago to try and set a scene up. As would be expected, trying to get a character with an IK rig to match up between softwares was difficult, and to be honest I didn’t even bother to try. Some parts of the mesh were missing upon import and I was having difficulty with the transform points of the mesh. I at least got it in the scene with the textures attached. I’ll look into doing an actual render tomorrow. For now here’s a janky screenshot that for whatever reason I find quite funny:

I am still confused on:

How to transform a group of selected objects around their median point. That would’ve been very helpful for moving my character around. Additionally, there appears to be a ‘send to Unreal’ button in Maya now (which I don’t think existed at the time of the tutorial). Does that negate the entire process of exporting? I remember hearing last year there’s now a supported plugin for transferring models between UE, Houdini, and Maya… is this it? I’ll need to look more into that tomorrow!

Looking forward:

I’ll try to get a render out of the above ‘Linky’ character. In part for practice and in part because I hope to do a short film with him in Maya at some point so I want to get a sense for the visual aesthetics.

Also I want to look into the difference that this ‘send to Unreal’ button has versus the typical FBX export.

Until then, peace out!

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