That looks great! I have a personal quibble with the fact that the tail starts out as a “hard Z” shape and then starts getting softer/curvier, but honestly that’s probably just me being pedantic – I’ve seen cats’ tails make that exact shape IRL.
That said, believability > realism most of the time, so it may be worth trying to soften that hard right-angle (so changing it to more of a “J” or “S” shape than a “Z” shape)… I guess that if you just have a play around with some more, you can figure out whether you like the harder or softer curves better.
On the point that @Hyrule_Symbol mentions, that’s a really brilliant point I hadn’t thought about – by taking advantage of animations and bone connection points, it’s possible to attach limbs arbitrarily – which means you can mix and match even-width and odd-width parts and keep them all nicely centered/symmetrical. Whether you make the tails a bodypart or a piece of equipment, it’ll give you a lot of flexibility to make them look totally purrrrfect!
Oh, don’t hurry: I was trying to follow @BrunoSupremo advice, but as soon I started to build the “z”, I realized that what I do want to achieve is a round curl design, like a “J” shape…
But, cats do have a ton of emotions that they express with they tails:
So, the thing is that I notice, like everybody else did, that Hearthlings have a lot of animations that express feelings. Would be wierd to see the cat-person animation with the exacly same tail in every situation, right? (and don’t forget that cats also shift ears positions to express emotions, oh god…)
So, I decided to stop to hurry about the tail for a while and concentrate on the rest of the model, and meanwhile I will seek for help from other modders to implement tail as a limb that can be animated to work together with the full body, expressing what the cat-person is feeling at the moment.
BTW, maybe it’s time for me to sit and plan this mod more carefully, with a proper pipeline.
This will be the most important step for the idea to come to life in the future. As you now have figured out, creating a new “kingdom” is basicly creating content on all aspects of the game.
I guess thats why we dont see many kingdommods and even the developers have stated that implementing Rayas children was to early, thinking of the workload it brings on the team.
I dont code, only sculpting and ideas or concepts, but let me know if i can help you in any way with your vision
That sounds amazing! It’s also a massive undertaking and honestly I think it’s one of the most involved mods anyone has attempted to date – it’s certainly do-able with the currently available tech in the game, it’s just a matter of grinding through all the work and then keeping it up to date as new alphas are released. But you have great support in your corner here, so I reckon that together all these awesome people can make it happen
I think that creating your proper pipeline is definitely a good step here. I suspect that you’ll be able to seek help from others to do the actual work involved given the scope of what you’re trying to do (and how popular the idea is!), so if you can break up the workload and delegate tasks that will definitely make things more viable. It means you’ll need a solid plan in place though, so everyone stays on the same page.
Simply getting the basic animated models (i.e. moving arms and legs in line with the human skeleton) functioning as re-skinned hearthlings is a big enough first step to overcome, so breaking your ideas down into goals the way you have been is a really good plan IMO. Once you have your cat race walking around in the game, you can use that as a reference to add further animations such as idle and interaction, extra appendages, and so on.
I’ll be honest, it’s a daunting prospect; but if/when you pull it off, it’ll be a super impressive showcase of what’s possible from modding the game.
Focusing on the rest of the model for now sounds like a good idea - the tail can be a thing for the future, once you’ve decided on what style you prefer
The tail would make an excellent addition to the expression of feelings; however, remember that there are (for now?) only 5 states which would have to be expressed: Forlorn, Glum, Content, Merry, Jubilant.
Now, I’m not a cat-person, and I have no idea how cats “work”; but based on the handy table you provided, @Bella_Chatlotte, I’d say that 1 or maybe 2 “animations” is enough for each of the five feelings stated above - except possibly for Content.
When it comes to “ease up” the animating-process of a tail like this, I’d say the imporant things to identify is “how does a sad cat-tail look?” and “how does a happy cat-tail look?”.
If it is possible to identify what the happy and sad states look like, they can be used for Glum respectively Merry; further more, they can be “exaggerated” for Forlorn respectively Jubilant.
(For dogs, a sad tail is typically a lowered one; a happy tail would be raised and/or wagging one - both states are simple to exaggerate)
For now, a style of tail could/would be the main focus as far as the tail go - and the additon of having it moving about can be added in the future, yes.
I’d like to say that it should be somewhat easy to add such a feature down the line; I’m fairly new to modding, but I can’t think of any reason why it would be hard to add.
I never really stated my idea about how a cat tail could look, but when you started talking about animating it this is what I pictured (again, as an animator/modder, not a cat-person):
A “Tail Section” is nothing else but a 2x2x2 Voxel Cube; combined desired number of these sections make the Tail.
Let’s say we have 4 sections simply stacked on eachother - a simple animation (in a 2D view) could look like this
(Sorry for the crude example; I’m just about to leave home and wont be back for a few days - wanted to provide my feedback prior leaving. Please, try to picture these squares as cubes that are moving only on the y-axis)
This animation cycle could be looping; mirrored; expanded, etc - all pretty simply.
Oh man, tell me about it, right? I wipped out up and down this forum trying to find more races to play with for since 2015.
I am 100% sure and aware that I will not be able to pull this out without help, and that it will take a LONG TIME to be done.
I used to work home-office as a 2D artist for a very tiny indie game dev party from Rio de Janeiro, so I’m very familiar with the fact that this is not a easy task.
And that’s why I’m so gratefull and amazed wt all the replys I’m having here. I know you guys can do wonders, 'cause I have been following you from the dark for a while, keeping track of your work. But last week, I finnaly find myself willing to learn more, participate actively with you. So thank you all for push me foward on my very first day !
OMG Thanks A LOT for the last replies! You guys just blow my mind with all these amazing insights! <3
Yeti, I will definely delegate things, cause I can’t code, I don’t have any “kung-fu-animate-skills” (yet…) and I’m literaly 1 day old as a modeling voxel artist. But, I’m not new as a game dev, as I briefly explained on a comment to @Fornjotr. I have some ideas of how this must to be break up in small pieces, and that I need to do it so I can add the most hard and mode developed pieces later (like the “tail mood”), but without delaying to delivery the first playable version of the mod, so we can find and tackle easier bugs right on the beggining.
That’s my goal!
@Hamnisu, you sir are a true gentleman for take a moment before you go to make me this graphic explanetion of how animate the tail. Also, the whole reply is gold. Have a good trip!
Cleopata, one of my tuxedo cats:
Not sure if I like the eye’s shape.
The eyes seem kinda spooky.
I don’t think they fit to well with the eyes you made for the black cat.
I prefer the vertical shaded eyes, mostly because they fit in better with the style of the other cats as well as Stonehearth’s own eye style. Both are expressive though, so well done @Kittyodoom for that!
The bottom picture is the best solution in my opinion. It fits the Stonehearth style, even though the top one might look more realistic…
You two are right, mostly because I do not want the cats to have a general design style so unrelated to the current human models. You guys opened my eyes (pun intended) for this issue. Thank you for sharing your thoughts about this. <3
My first model of Wild Catnip Flower <3
Sorry for the late reply! And also i couldn’t read all of that i’m a liiitle short on time right now
It does seem like a good idea! Animation does live up with little details like thees but as i stated above it will be a lot to do, as you know the animation library is huge, but if you’re willing to take it i’m sure there’d be no problem since it is just a tail after-all (and ears is it?)
For the tail model i’d suggest two or Tree segments (dependin on length) but you probably should start off with three and just not make a model for the third if the tail is short
The style i personally use is this
This is from a mermaid i used and it follows the tail style of something like the squirrel in SH with it’s connected segments
There’s also the Harpy but i couldn’t find good shots of her
Also if you haven’t you should check out the tutorial i made here, it doesn’t give much info on the animation motions, but it should get you started
Sorry for the stiff tone and rushed writing, but i’m a little busy with things, so…
The first style is more realistic and looks awesome - good job @Kittyodoom!
However, the 2nd style - which also looks great, btw - fits better with the style of Stonehearth (as previously stated).
I think this segmented tail-construction will be the best for the general style of Stonehearth; I think it would also be “easier” for the modeller/animator.
I guess I’m weird. I really like the top one but the bottom one creeps me out.
I think its because the top one is more natural.
It does look quite good in my opinion.