No, Not Jerry Rig
Today, Laurence forwarded me the newest Lightwave newsletter — which included some videos and an interview for Origami Software’s recently released animation tool, Jimmy|RIG. Watching the videos for it, it sounds way too good to be true. Apparently able to skin, rig, animate and render complex bipedal meshes in realtime, Jimmy|RIG is a very exciting program for animators, as well as people who aren’t too good at (or don’t have time for) rigging and skinning models. The interactivity between the user’s changes and the feedback provided on screen is amazing. One of the hardest parts about 3D animation is how long even low-quality preview renders can take. If you can see your changes in realtime, though, animation can become much easier, and to be honest, much more fun.
In 3D animation, every model that you want animated and moving around needs to be rigged in some way. Whether you are creating a series of morphs that your model can blend between, or a fully rigged model with weightmaps, a bone system, inverse kinematics, and eyeball controllers, you always have to devote a few hours to setting up your model so it can animate. Any tool that helps this process will help create better animations for more efficient budgets.