Telltale Games

Technical Artist (Rigging), May 2016 – September 2018


tt01As part of the rigging team, I worked on character and object rigs for:

  • Batman: The Telltale Series (Episodes 1-5)
  • The Walking Dead: A New Frontier (Episodes 1-5)
  • Minecraft: Story Mode Season 1 (Episodes 6-8)
  • Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series (Episodes 1-5)
  • Batman: The Enemy Within (Episodes 1-5)
  • Minecraft: Story Mode Season 2 (Episodes 1-5)
  • The Walking Dead: The Final Season (Episodes 1-2)
  • [An Unannounced Title]

I used and improved upon automated rigging tools, created custom controls, and set up weighting.  I also helped maintain existing animation pipeline tools and took point on helping hunt down issues as they came up.

Cloth System

tt02I redesigned and improved upon our cloth system to create the simulation/rig hybrid cape used in Batman: The Enemy Within.  The system used NCloth in Maya to simulate natural cloth motion.  The simulation could be blended seamlessly into and out of art directed rig poses.  The rig could be used to redirect the cape mid-simulation.  Because of the underlying blendshape setup, the system supported arbitrary inputs, including sculpted poses and corrections made through modeling.

Automated Rigging Tools

tt03I brought a new set of character rigging tools to usability and completion.  The new tools allowed us to build rigs that were functionally equivalent to previous ones but had the advantage of being more robust and extensible.  Rigs built with these tools were modular and highly configurable per limb.  I extended the system to support quadrupeds, for which we never had complete pipeline support prior.  Features included:

  • Support for arbitrary limb combinations
  • IK/FK matching for limbs and spines
  • Support for stretching, pinning, and space switching
  • Rebuilding of limbs on an individual basis
  • One-button setup for standard bipeds and quadrupeds

Animation Import System

tt04I built a new system for importing Maya animations onto rigs from the ground up.  This system parsed Maya ASCII files directly, allowing us to import almost any existing animation or pose onto any character with no data overhead.  Features included:

  • Preservation of animation layers
  • Rotation order remapping
  • Approximate remapping of hand IK based on character proportion differences
  • Pose blending
  • Additive import

MotionBuilder Tools

tt05I finalized and maintained a pipeline that bridged our Maya rigs with MotionBuilder for convenient motion capture processing.  The pipeline allowed us to create a MotionBuilder “subrig” using the Maya skeleton as a base.  Animation and poses data could be exported from Maya and mapped directly onto these subrigs for pose matching purposes.  Clean data could be exported from MotionBuilder as an FBX and be mapped back to the Maya control rig.  I also wrote several tools that baked that data in a way that was intuitive for animators.