Rigid body animation is perhaps the simplest of methods for moving any thing around your stage, including 3d sketches, Shapes, Props, Vehicles and Characters.
Use the Grabber to move a thing to create a keyframe, then change time on the Timeline and move it again to create a second keyframe. The FirstStage engine uses cubic interpolation and speed curves to create smooth movement between those keyframes.
Note - You can move things along all three axis, so it is good for vehicles and aircraft.
The Motion Path created can be interacted with as a 3d timeline - a visual timeline of particles follows the centre of the thing in motion. Whilst using the Grabber:
- Bring up your wristwatch to select the timeline
- Animate the desired body by pressing the 'B' button/ ThumbPad to bring up the handles menu and select 'Start Motion' - It will now appear as a keyframe on your timeline.
- Using the grabber on the tool wheel, scrub the timeline to the time you want your next keyframe.
- Point at the object and hold the trigger, then place the object in its desired position for the end of the keyframe, and release the trigger. A motion path between the objects start and end point in that keyframe will now appear (represented by a trail of glowing coloured dots) that the object will follow to jump to the next keyframe within the time set.
- All other animated bodies on set will also scrub, making it a great visual way to accurately select time.
- To adjust the speed of the animation, scrub the desired keyframe to a new time; this will speed or slow the motion path.
Tip - Build up your movement in stages.
e.g. Place a car, then move time and place the car a second time to create a straight motion path between those two points. Then scrub the motion path to points where the car is not moving naturally, and re-orientate the car to create new keyframes in between. Alternatively, the same technique can be applied by scrubbing on the timeline.
Using these technique's allows for very convincing movements of bodies.