OMDU: Actor Editor

The most important part of any pipeline is a strong data backend where tools have the ability to self-discover environment. A core design of the OMDU Maya toolset was to ensure that batch re-export of the entire game with a single button click was possible, should that need arise.

To accomplish this, asset data is tagged then encrypted onto a custom node placed next to the skinCluster inside each skin file, utilizing namespaces to establish relationship. This data flows with the Actor along the reference pipeline, allowing tools to easily query the scene and discover the complete cast of actors. From this, tools are able to derive pertinent information about each asset, including the physical layout on disk.

By decoupling data onto a custom node, Tech Artists didn't have to fear data loss due to a simple mesh replacement or routine asset modification. The choice to embed data was made to minimized the chance of orphaned data due to churn over content re-organization. We also decided early to eliminate the need for continuous connectivity to a backend server, with a focus on remote out-sourcing to regions which might not have access to the internet.

The front-end for this system is demonstrated below. Developed in Maya 2017 using PySide2, the UI leverages various callbacks and font styling features in order to provide feedback while live validating against a global project configuration.

Actor Editor demo

Code development in Autodesk Maya 2017 using python and PySide2