Unreal Engine: the best body, finger and face capture mocap workflow in 2024

November 21, 2023
60 min read

This tutorial aims to guide viewers through the entire process of retargeting motion capture data onto Unreal Engine 4 and Unreal Engine 5 characters. Sam, Rokoko’s Creative Director, emphasizes that while the tutorial primarily uses Rokoko motion capture, the principles covered are broadly applicable to workflows using any motion capture system. 

Users looking specifically at animation and motion capture workflows for Metahumans can follow this bonus tutorial as well.

Below, you can also find a short transcript of the key parts of the tutorial. 

Happy watching and learning!

Exporting Rokoko Motion Capture to Unreal

The tutorial begins by explaining how to properly export motion capture data from Rokoko Studio to Unreal. Sam highlights the importance of checking specific options such as mesh and face, especially when facial animations are included.

The preferred FBX format and frame rate settings for Unreal Engine are also discussed, ensuring compatibility with UE4 and UE5 mannequins.

Importing Motion Capture to Unreal

The focus shifts to Unreal Engine as Sam demonstrates the process of importing Rokoko motion capture animation files into the engine.

He instructs users to import the mannequins first, which come with built-in control rigs and retargeting capabilities.

Additionally, the importance of adding the Rokoko resources folder to the project is highlighted, and users are advised to create a custom character folder for later use.

Setting Up IK Retargeting and Control Rig Workflows

The tutorial delves into the IK (inverse kinematics) retargeting system and explores Control Rig workflows. Sam introduces a free Control Rig asset generously provided by Alberto, a talented Unreal developer and Discord mod.

The asset is showcased for simplifying the handling of two-handed guns or objects in animations. The chapter emphasizes the convenience of the built-in control rigs for UE4 and UE5 mannequins.

Animation Import and Retargeting

Sam guides users through the animation import process, demonstrating how to add motion capture animations to the game and associate them with UE4 and UE5 mannequins.

The retargeting of facial blend shapes is explained, ensuring that animations align correctly with the character models.

The importance of declaring compatibility with the UE4 skeleton is also covered.


Editing Motion Capture Animations in Unreal

The tutorial explores two methods of editing motion capture animations within Unreal Engine.

Sam initially introduces Forward Kinematics (FK) animation editing, showcasing its application when characters are not set up for easy IK control rigs.

Later, he transitions to IK control systems, highlighting the advantages of slaving left and right hands together and reducing feet sliding through IK goals.

Exporting Character Animations from Unreal to Rokoko Studio

The final chapter briefly touches on exporting character animations from Unreal back to Rokoko Studio.

Sam demonstrates how to export an FBX file from Unreal, emphasizing its usefulness in scenarios where animations need to be applied to characters in Rokoko Studio, for example for a real-time visualisation of motion capture in the Rokoko Studio scene preview.


In conclusion, the video provides an in-depth exploration of retargeting motion capture data onto Unreal Engine characters, offering valuable insights into exporting, importing, setting up control rigs, and editing animations.

Viewers are encouraged to explore additional tutorials and resources provided by Rokoko for a more comprehensive understanding, that are available on Rokoko’s YouTube channel.

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