Blender 2.8 update

Read this to update your old rigs from Blender 2.79 to Blender 2.8.


Rig Update

Rigs coming from Blender 2.79 must be converted to the 2.8 standards (layers and groups must be converted to collections, slightly different bones dependency logic). The “update” feature of Auto-Rig Pro will handle this for you. Thus, when opening a rig file from Blender 2.79, a button labelled “UPDATE REQUIRED” will prompt the update.

It is mandatory to click it to make the armature compliant with the Blender 2.8 rig standards. Otherwise, some rig functions will break.


What’s new and improved

2.8 Standards

The whole addon has been ported to the Blender 2.8 python API and the new scene management systems (collections, view layers…) The rig collections are now organized as follow:

  • character1 is the master character collection

  • character1_rig contains all rig objects such as the armature, picker objects

  • character1_cs contains all custom shape objects

  • The collections can be renamed, but they must end with “_rig” and “_cs”. In example “joey_rig”, “joey_cs”


Unified Interface

  • New unified, compact interface. The fingers, toes and other sub-limbs are now treated as “options”, per limb. They can be accessed by clicking the “Limb Options” button, after selecting a bone from the limb. A window will then popup to access and modify the parameters (facial bones, spine bones amount, neck bones amount, toes, fingers…). Thanks to this, the previous limitations are lifted: toes and fingers can be added or removed from any limbs, even duplicated ones. The main rig panel was becoming a little blocked with too many options and buttons. It’s now better structured and clear.

  • The “Add Limb” menu has been brought to all types of armature (it was restricted to “Empty” armatures before). This way, it’s now quick and easy to add any new limbs to any armature.

  • The “Enable All” button to enable all limbs has been removed, since it’s now useless.

Set Character Name

The character’s name can now be set easily using the dedicated button. Rig objects and collections are renamed accordingly. E.g, naming a character “matt” will rename the collections to “matt_rig”, “matt_cs”…


Apply Pose As Rest Pose

The current pose can now be applied as rest pose (kind of “Match to Rig” inverted!). Under the hood, the armature modifiers of meshes are applied then restored, the reference bones position are changed, then clicking “Match to Rig” completes the operation.


Warning: this does not preserve existing animations yet (to do later), since the rest pose is changed, the bones animation will be incorrect (animation are based on the rest pose).

Soft Lips

As an option, the lips can now behave in a more natural way. When moving the lips corner or jaw controller, the other lips controllers will follow softly. To access this option, click the head reference bone then Limb Options.

The Soft Lips: Visual Only option will make the lips controllers follow only visually. Useful when using shape keys to deform the lips corners.

_images/soft_lips_panel.png _images/soft_lips.gif

IK Pole and Eye Targets Distance

The IK pole and eye targets distance can now be adjusted, by selecting an arm/leg/head reference bone, then click Limb Options.


Toes Pivot

The feet can now be rotated from a pivot controller around the toes. To enable this controller, check use the checkbox in the Limb Options menu of the leg.

_images/toes_pivot_controller.jpg _images/toes_pivot.gif


Better seamless IK/FK snap integration: The [IK > FK] and [FK > IK] Snap buttons have been replaced by a single button, that automatically switches and snaps to IK or FK according to the current value. The old manual buttons can still be accessed by clicking the settings icon next to it. After snapping, the respective IK or FK hands/feet are now automatically selected as well. IK switch has never been so easy :)


No Secondary Controllers

The secondary controllers can now be set to “None”, along “Additive (Exportable)”, “Bendy Bones”, to disable all of them.



The markers selection hotspot is now bigger, making them easier to select. On the cosmetic side, they’re now highlighted on selection and mouse over.

Game Engine Export

  • Shape keys animations are now exported properly. When shape keys are driven by bones, the bones no more need to be exported with the same name, not to break the connection, which could lead to complicated setup. To overcome this, shape keys animation data are baked first then sent back to the Fbx file when exporting.

  • New option “No Parents” to support stretchy animated bones. Caution though, to achieve this, the bones are unparented so the rig hierarchy is broken.

  • The breast bones are now exported with the Humanoid rig even if “Advanced” is disabled.

  • The bone’s primary and secondary axes can now be assigned at export time.

  • The c_root_bend.x vertex group has been replaced by the root.x vertex group, to avoid skinning clutter. May change a little the skinning in this area, in rigs coming from older versions.

  • The Fix Bones Matrix feature has been improved.

  • DAE export in progress


  • Better names matching when building the bones list

  • Copy Selected Target Bones has been renamed Copy Selected Bones Rotation