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Baking simulations in linked groups doesn't work
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Description

System Information
openSUSE 13.2 x64, Radeon HD 6870

Blender Version
2.74
Broken: N/A (the problem always existed)
Worked: N/A (the problem always existed)

Short description of error
I wasn't sure how much this qualifies as a bug or feature request, since it's something that seemingly never existed in Blender but still a major problem which affects animators. Reassign or close accordingly.

Issue: Some characters are meant to be linked and animated from external blend files. The character's objects are typically part of a group, which you link into your scene then make the armature a proxy so you can locally animate the character. This ability is very helpful and for the most part it works flawlessly, but there's one major issue: You cannot bake simulations contained on any of the objects.

In my case, I'm linking a female character which contains long particle hair. The hair looks just fine, but I cannot bake the hair dynamics defined in its particle setup. Even if I could, I cannot adjust the start and end frames of the cache. Also, would the linked hair interact with collides in my scene, or local force fields such as wind?

I tried making the head object a proxy alongside the armature, but this only creates a duplicate which doesn't even have the particle system (modifiers are lost). I also tried the "Bake all physics" button in my scene, but it didn't seem to affect the linked character.

Can a way to bake simulations on linked objects please be implemented in some form? Since groups are duplicated by empties, I would think of adding a button in the Physics panel called "Bake all physics on duplicated group". There should also be two fields to override the start and end frames of the caches in all simulations, so they can be adjusted to the start and end of your scene.

Details

Type
Bug

Event Timeline

Mircea Kitsune (mirceakitsune) raised the priority of this task from to Needs Triage by Developer.
Bastien Montagne (mont29) claimed this task.

Thanks for the report, but this is indeed not a bug. :)

In fact, this is the major topic on which Lukas has been working for gooseberry, setting up such a pipeline using alembic as backend for caches. If you want to test current state, you can build (or get a build) of the gooseberry branch of Blender - but beware, it’s strongly not advised to use this in production work!