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gkathellar

Default character posture

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For some time now, I've been a little bit bothered by the positioning of the head on female1 elves, humans, and aumauauaua. It strikes me as a little too far forward, with the neck angled a little oddly - but at the same time, I've felt like this isn't quite on target. What I've finally realized is that the issue doesn't lie in the neck or head at all, but in the knees and the arch of the back.

 

See, if you look at them in profile, females of these three races are currently animated so that their knees are always slightly couched2. That's sort of fine, and is actually consistent with having the head a bit forward3. The hips, feet and legs are all consistent with this - but as you move up the animation to the torso, you'll notice that the back has a very, very prominent arch, and the chest is puffed out. This is neutral posture in many dance and athletic disciplines, and is how people can wear heels without falling over4, but it's tremendously inconsistent with the couched knees, forward head, and practical footwear that taller PoE females have. Basically, the posture of the current models is ...

 

Neck (couched) / Upper torso (neutral) / Legs (couched)

 

... which looks bad, structurally. Personally, I'd much prefer to see Neutral/Neutral/Neutral, posture, as is the case on the Orlan and Dwarven models (see FN2). But if the point of the couched posture is a "combat ready" look5 and there's a real desire to keep it, there need to be adjustments to the upper torso adjusted to straighten the spine, pull in the chest, and tilt the collarbone so that it's consistent with the position of the neck.

 

The only other approach would be to give the female models high heels, but if that happens I WILL COME FOR YOU6.

 

tl;dr Skeletons are spoooooky

 

1 It could be a problem for males too, but I never play male characters, and I'm too lazy to check. It probably is.

2 This isn't objectively problematic but it's ... a little weird, honestly. Orlan and dwarves are comparatively centered, with their knees straight but unlocked and their hips placed firmly on top of their feet - reflecting what I've been taught is good posture. The animators have done an A+ job of making those little bodies look real and structurally sound.

3 If you stand up and couch your knees, you'll notice that your hips tend to move back a bit, your shoulders advance to compensate, your chest hollows, and the angle of your neck and collarbone change. This puts your head forward.

4The hips are also pushed back as a result. This is the point of heels, for anyone who doesn't know - they adjust the wearer's center of gravity so that they stick out their chest and butt slightly more than usual to compensate.

5I sure hope not, because you've got neutral stances on the one side, and fighting stances on the other, and there's very little real in-between. A good neutral stance shifts effortlessly into a fighting stance while being perfectly natural.

6No I won't.

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If I'm typing in red, it means I'm being sarcastic. But not this time.

Dark green, on the other hand, is for jokes and irony in general.

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I agree about the stance/posture and I primarily play female characters so I've been noticing issues with their models more, however males have a ridiculously cartoon character look where they're incredibly square.

 

When they stand they look like they're not standing straight when viewed from behind, I posted a link in one of the bug threads, they all look like they're leaning to one side when idle.

Edited by Sensuki

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