Working with Unity Timeline

Working with Animation Override

Continuing from the previous article, we have just learn how to implement character animation into the Timeline and how we can seamlessly string together different types of animation clips together. In this article we will explore the ability to have an Override Track which you can add another animation track to replace the currently active track.

There are two methods in which you can achieve an override track implementation, the first method is to override the entire animation clip with an new one. The second method builds upon the first method but also add a little bit more, and that is to partially replace the animation clip using Avatar Mask.

Override Track:

To activate the Override Track, you first have to have an existing animation track, within the 3 dots icon, there should be an drop down menu which includes the “Add Override Track”.

Once that is selected you will be greeted with another Track added to the timeline. In this track you are able to drag and drop any other animation clip which you like to override with.

Here is an example of an override happening during my character walk back.

The problem with override tracks is that you aren’t able to use the same “Match offset to previous clip” function. This sometimes results in your character jumping back and forth like the example below.

The reason for this is because you are essentially replacing the entire animation with the override track. It isn’t seamless if you current animation track is string together. The only solution is to manually set the offset of the Override Track.

If you select your override Track the Inspector will change to corresponded to the selected object. There you will see a area called “Clip Transform Offsets”. This will allow you to manually select the position and rotation and move your animated object’s position to match the original track.

The two clips below show an example of before and after the Offset has been manually replace to match the current active animation clip.

Avatar Mask:

The second method dives deeper with the override track and adds in the ability to turn off certain animation rigs, this is called the Avatar Mask. If you select the override Track itself, the Inspector will show you an option to add an Avatar Mask.

First we will need to create an Avatar Mask, we can do this by going into the Projects tab and selecting the yBot (or your original model) and right clicking > Create > Avatar Mask.

Unity will then prompt you to create an new name for this new Avatar Mask and it will show up within the Projects window. If you select the Avatar Mask and open up the “Humanoid” drop down menu, you will be greeted with an image that looks like below.

Here you are able to turn off certain parts of the character rig. For example, I decided to turn off animation for both the legs and also the IK movement of the legs.

Both the IK and Positioning are turned off.

Select the Override Track again and apply the new Avatar Mask within the slot. Now since the Avatar Mask is affecting the Override Track, only the Arms and body are overruled while the legs are still the same as the original.

This makes the blending between the original and override track more seamless than without the Avatar Mask.

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Simon Truong

Simon Truong

A Designer, an Illustrator and a massive tech geek aspiring to become a professional Unity Developer.