This blog serves as a step-by-step guide for users who want to learn how to take animations created in Rokoko Studio and import them directly into Unreal Engine 4. The process we go over involves using Mixamo to rig your custom character, so make sure your custom character is compatible with Mixamo’s auto-rigging feature before continuing!
Note: If you want to follow along using the same character we used, you can download it here.
Exporting From Studio
Click the “Export” button to bring up the “Export options” box
Most of the default information should remain untouched, however, you have the option to adjust the following settings:
If you have Virtual Production data, make sure “Export VP data” is checked
“Mimic file hierarchy” will export your files in the same hierarchy that they are in Studio
“Export Path” shows where the files will be exported out to
Default exporting file format is FBX, however, you can also change “Format” to BVH or CSV
“FBX Settings” allows you to choose between ASCII or Binary types
“Version” allows you to choose which FBX version you’d like to export as
“Skeleton” has four different choices depending upon where you plan to import the animation to: Rokoko Newton (Default), Maya HumanIK, 3ds Max Biped, and Mixamo
Once you have your settings set, click the “Export” button
Locate the FBX, OBJ or ZIP file of your character and drag and drop it into the rectangular box
After the processing has finished, review your character to make sure their idle animation displays properly on your character
If your custom character is not in a T-pose, Mixamo will have you use their tool to locate particular joints to best rig your character. Once done, click the “Next” button
You may be presented with a prompt asking if you want to proceed with this character, click “Next” if you do.
You’ll now see your character in a T-Pose in Mixamo
Click the “Download” button to download your character from Mixamo
Within the “Download Settings” box you can choose between the formats FBX, FBX for Unity, and Collada.
You can also choose whether or not you want your character in a T-Pose or their original pose
After choosing your settings, click the “Download” button
Importing Into Unreal
Click the Epic Games Launcher and open the Unreal Engine program.
Open an existing or new Unreal Project (if this is your first time, we recommend opening a new project)
Once in Unreal, right-click within the empty space of your Content Browser and click “New Folder”
Name the new folder “Character”, or something similar
Within this folder, create another folder named “Animations”
Import your character and animation assets inside of their respective folders
Note: You will need to import your character asset into Unreal first, because when you import the animations it will require the skeleton of your character
Right-click within the empty space of your Content Browser and click “Import Asset”
Find the character FBX file and click ‘Open’.
Do the same for your animation files too
Upon Importing your character an FBX Import Options window will appear
You have many options to adjust if you want to import certain mesh, animation and material data or assign already imported data to it.
For this tutorial, we will leave Skeleton set to ‘None’ so that it creates a new Skeleton for us instead of assigning one.
Click Import when done
Upon Importing an animation file an FBX Import Options window will appear
You must specify which skeleton this animation will be attached to
Click on the dropdown that says ‘None’ and click the skeleton of your character
You have the option to adjust the Animation Length, Transforms and other options. However, for this tutorial we will not change any of those options
Click Import when done
Setting Up Skeleton
Navigate to your imported character and double-click on its’ Skeletal Mesh to open it
Open the Skeleton Component Editor by clicking the “Skeleton” button at the top right
Navigate to the Skeleton Tree tab and click “Options” then click “Show Retargeting Options”
To the right of Hip, make sure that “Translation Retargeting” is set to “Animation”
For all other bones, starting at "Spine" down to "LeftToe_End", change the “Translation Retargeting” to “Skeleton”
Click “Save” once done editing the bone retargeting settings
Navigate back to the animations you’ve imported
Double-click on one of them to open it
Now you should see the animation playing on your character properly
If you still notice some issues, double-check your Skeleton and make sure it’s set up how we mentioned above
You should now be familiar with the process of importing Studio animations into Unreal. From this point onward, you can now start importing other animations and making then blend/transition together to create AI actions or a character controller. If you need help learning how to do this, check out our Working With Character Animations in Unreal blog!
We hope this guide has helped you set up your character properly in Unreal to allow your newly recorded animations to work! If you have any questions or continue to run into issues please reach out to our support desk.