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The anatomy of a Minecraft model

How to work with and create models for Minecraft

Droid outer panel rotation

  • 2013-08-09 13:55:54
    Hi Ve[dar]' :)

    firstly, just wanted to send a huge thanks for publishing this course, which i ironically found from someone "complaining" about pahimar's latest let's mod video, they said "WTF vswe's method is much better" - i retorted that i actually prefer pahimar's dev env setup - but i do see the benefits of the "in the minecraft project" way also - i just like my setup the "other" way :)

    but beyond that, i've watched all your first modding course and most way through the modelling course, and they've really been incredible and the right balance of coding and fun :)... i shall certainly will donate at the end of this month [i.e. payday :) ]

    anyway :)

    in lecture 2 #2 you use another private field to collect the outerPanels so that they can be rotated. However, i like to watch and stop the video once i think i know what might be coming next, so that i can see if my learning is coming along... so, before you added the private field collection of outerpanels i'd stopped the video at the point where we could see the 90 degree "elbowed" outerpanel moving as a static child of the inner panel at -pi/2 rad rotational angle.

    at this point i thought "aha!" and paused [at 7:30], and coded...

    but all i changed was the for each loop in the render to:

            for (ModelRenderer panel : panels) {
                panel.rotateAngleX = droid.getPanelRotation();

                // rotate outer panels
                ModelRenderer panelOuter = (ModelRenderer) panel.childModels.get(0);
                panelOuter.rotateAngleX = droid.getPanelRotation() - (float)Math.PI / 2;


    ran it, and went "w00t" ... and then watched the next 8 or so minutes where you show a different way :)
    [ and i'll note, that different way was purely java algorithmics, not mod modelling per se ]

    obviously the way i've implemented makes both sets of panels extend at the same time... but for all the added code to make them wait until the inner panels were extended, the above method seemed far more efficient for what i [in my aesthetic pondering :)] felt was as equally nice a dynamic ... and less "clunky" to watch :) [and as a side-effect, halves the time of the full panel opening sequence]

    personal preference of course :) - but i thought i'd share that here in case anyone who'd been studying the lectures wasn't aware of how to get to the child models from that method...

    [ and this isn't a complaint or critique, i was just noting an alternative method which, to me, i prefer ]

    peace and best wishes.

    hej da og tack sa mycket fur stor god "lecturen" *


    *my basic icelandic isn't too bad, but my swedish is awful, sorry ;)

  • 2013-08-09 14:39:55
    Hello. Glad you like the courses. Yeah, I totally understand why people like Pahimar's way better, it's more robust. I like to keep it simple myself and since I wanted to get along with the "actual modding" I decided to keep it simple in the courses as well. However, if I'm not mistaken I mentioned Pahimar's way in the lecture. (I can't remember for sure, maybe it was just during the test run. The test run of each lecture is never exactly the same as the real one.) :D

    So, to the models. There's nothing wrong with your ways of doing it and therefore I want to clearly state that here in the beginning. But just because there's nothing wrong with it I thought I could comment about why I didn't do it like you did.

    Getting the child model can come quite in handy. It makes sure that we don't have to save both the inner and the other panels for the droids, just like you did. However, I like to save the ModelRenderers in the fields to keep it a bit organized. It's easy to get the outer panels from its own list. Of course, it's quite straight forward to get them from the inner panel as well, but if we had tons of child models it might get a bit confusing: "Should we refer to child #3? Wasn't it child #5?". Of course, it's just a matter of taste.

    Secondly, the outer panels can of course depend directly on the inner ones. However, that might in many cases not look well. In this case it just made the extraction look smoother so here it was perfectly fine. If you have played Steve's Carts 2 you might have seen the solar panels which the droid's panels are inspired by. The original panels first moves upwards to get out of the cart to then extract when there's enough space to actually unfold. In more advanced animations making different parts move at different times is quite important even though it's pretty simple to do, like I showed in the lecture. It still takes some time to calculate all the positions and such of course.

    Also, the whole point with having child models is to make them follow the parent's rotation and movement. That's still the case in the way you do it. The outer panel is attached properly to the inner one to make its rotation work properly. However, it's a bit more apparent that the outer panel is simply following the inner one if we don't use the inner rotation for the outer panel. Of course, just using the inner panel's rotation on the outer one's isn't enough. It still has to be a child model.

    Good luck with the rest of the lectures. Or if you fancy some Swedish: "Lycka till med resten av föreläsningarna" :P

  • 2013-08-09 18:18:42
    Thanks for the detailed reply...

    gotcha... that totally makes sense, especially the "what child was it" - i guess i was thinking about this use case, whereas you are sensibly showing a more extensible method for general use.

    and yeah, i've played a bit with SC2 - not enough i must add - i do love the mod, but in survival i tend to get lost in a sea of "what else was i doing" :) and when i was trying to build custom carts in creative i think i was jumping in too deep to early :)

    but aye, it was great to see those panel's from the carts "in the wild" in a lecture - made it something more tangible.

    i'm currently taking a lecture-break while i try to create a more randomised light-level-extension algorithm... i.e. one where not all the droids open at exactly the same time. After that i'm thinking about adding some particles when the droids are rising. [ i've already added bounding boxes based on your examples for the spaceship, plus "airblock" detection to stop them forcing through blocks ]

    yup. you did indeed mention pahimar's way in the first lecture.
    as i said to the vitriolic youtube commenter "to see and try everyone's methods makes us all better programmers" :)
    i find it weird when youtube commenter's spit at people trying to share knowledge... it's like going into a library and scribbling on all the books "this book isn't as good as my favourite book" ... but then, that's youtube commenters for you :D

    'course, i still haven't figured out how to actually build a release from his method, as i think i need to setup ant, which i've never done yet, and he hasn't done that part of the series yet :) [ but i'm in no hurry for that as yet, i need to a) finish your courses, b) make my own mod - which i have plans for neolithics and weird stonecircle stuff - don't think it requires robot droids tho unfortunately :D ]

    takk fyrir kaerlega aftur.

    or in my home country's tongue [manx gaelic] "gura mie mooar ayd reesht" :)
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