You have the option to either stream real-time data or playback data, so first, either get your mocap setup connected and ready to record, or put a pre-recorded take on loop. If you are using Axis Studio, you can do both at once.
Axis Neuron/Pro Settings
- In Axis Neuron or Axis Neuron Pro, go to File --> Settings --> Output Format and disable Displacement
- Go to Broadcasting and enable TCP or UDP, both are supported, there are just minor setup differences in the setup in unreal
- Enable BVH and select Binary format
Axis Studio Settings
- In Axis Studio, go to Main Menu --> Settings --> Advanced Settings
- Turn off Joint Space
- Next go to BVH Broadcasting
- Enable Capture, Edit, or both. Capture is for live data from your mocap suit and Edit is for pre-recorded data
- Disable: Displacement
- Protocol: TCP or UDP
- Axis Studio Skeleton (Axis Studio - Thumb Open if you are using gloves) if you are broadcasting to a character in T - Pose
- Unreal Engine skeleton if you are broadcasting to an Unreal character in A - pose
- Go to the Unreal Engine Marketplace and search for Neuron Live Link. Select and Install the compatible engine version.
- Open an Unreal Engine 5 project
- Go to Edit --> Plugins, and enable the Neuron Live Link plugin
- The UE editor will need to restart
- To include plugin assets in your project. go to the bottom right corner of the Content Browser, click Settings
- Check Show Engine Content and Show Plugin Content
- Now you will be able to access content from the plugin such as the Noitom Robot skeletons
- Setup real-time data stream from Axis software prior to setting up the following connection.
- In UE Editor, go to Windows >Virtual Production>Live link.
- Click Source --> Axis Neuron Live to view the following window options. Neuron Live Link supports UDP or TCP protocol to receive mocap data.
- UDP: Update the local address number to match Axis Studio and make sure the port numbers match
- TCP: Deselect Is UDP. Update the remote address to match Axis studio.
- Data from Axis Studio data should appear under Subject Name which will indicate the connection was successful. The subject name will match the name of the character in Axis Studio.
Retargeting Axis Studio Data to a Character
Next, you can either use the Noitom Robot skeleton that comes with the plugin, the UE4 Mannequin, or import your own FBX character.
- To import a character, drag it into the content browser.
- If you are importing a character:
- Make sure Skeletal Mesh is enabled
- Under Skeleton select none
- Enable Use T0 as Reference Pose and Import Morph Targets
- The import should create a few assets needed for realtime streaming:
- Skeletal Mesh is the Magenta one
- Skeleton is the blue one
Animation Blueprint for live sessions
Next, we need to make an Anim Blueprint to tell our character to use the Live Link data.
- Right click the Skeleton or Skeletal Mesh
- Select Create --> Anim Blueprint
- Open the Animation Blueprint
- In the blueprint space, create a Live Link Pose node and connect the out pin to the Output Pose input pin
- Type in the subject name under Live Link Subject Name
Select the Live Link Pose node and in the Details panel, select a Retarget Asset. Depending on what type of character you are using, different remaps will be needed
- Live Link Remap Asset is Unreal’s base class. Do not use this one with Axis
- The Manual Remap Asset is a custom character remap. You will need to open the GetRemappedboneName Function to modify it
- The Mixamo OLD Live link Remap works with Mixamo characters with “Mixamorig” Prefix
- The Neuron Remap drives characters with the Perception Neuron and Perception Neuron Pro Rigs
- The Studio Remap drives Characters with the Studio Skeleton and Mixamo Rigs without the “Mixamorig” prefix
- UE Mannequin Live Link Remap Asset drives CC3 characters and may work for other 3rd party characters
- After choosing a remap asset make sure to compile and save
This step is not necessary if you are using the UE4 Mannequin or another UE4 character in A-pose. Make sure to select the Unreal preset in Axis Studio instead.
If your character is not in a T-pose, correct it following these steps, otherwise. Some software have their characters in A pose by default, but T-pose is necessary to retarget data from the Axis Studio skeleton.
- Open the character skeleton that needs correction
- Use the skeleton tree to select the joints that need correcting to more closely match the Axis Skeleton
- Make sure to look at the T-pose from the front, top, and side to make sure it looks correct
- Once the desired pose is achieved, create an Animation Asset with the current pose
- Name the Animation Asset something memorable and save it in the same folder as the mesh and skeleton
- Add the corrective pose animation to the character's Anim Blueprint
- Connect it’s output to the input of Live Link Pose
- Compile and save. This will update your Anim Blueprint
Create Actor Blueprint Class for live sessions
Next, we are going to create an Actor Blueprint Class
- Right click on the Content Browser and select Blueprint Class
- Select Actor and open the blueprint
- Click Add Component --> Live Link Skeletal Animation Component and Skeletal Mesh component
- Select the Skeletal Mesh component
- In the Details panel, choose your character’s Skeletal Mesh under Animation --> Mesh
- Now, just drag the Actor class into the scene