Gesture Manipulation

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FacePoser has the ability to modify the playback of model animations within Source. By using the Gesture tool, scene designers can modify certain aspects of a model’s animation sequence(s) without having to use a 3D modeling application.


  • Create a scene with (null) gesture events
  • Alter the timing tags of a gesture
  • Change the Ramp of a gesture (optional)
  • Play back and tweak the choreography
  • Conclusion and Tips

Creating the Scene

The layout of the current scene.

The scene has now been created. The A_g_fingptfwd animation consists of the character raising its right arm to form a pointing pose. This pointing pose is extended for about a second, and then is gradually faded out. This article will change the animation into the right arm sluggishly being raised into the pointing pose. The pointing pose will then be held for about half of a second. Another half second will be left for the end of the event, resulting in a quick fade out.

Altering Timing Tags


Timing tag settings for the gesture event.

This resulted in the animation looking similar to the intended description.

Changing the Ramp

Optionally, the ramp of the event can be changed. Changing the ramp allows for the strength of the event to be modified, giving even more customization over the playback of the animation. The ramp of the event was changed to this:

Ramp settings for the gesture event.

Playing Back and Tweaking the New Animation

Play back the choreography to compare the original animation to the new one. Tweak the timing tag placement and ramp of the events if desired. Consider playing back the .vcd in the engine to see what the animation would truly look like.

Conclusion and Tips

With timing tag alteration, scene designers can have more leeway in what animations would look like in the Source engine. This prevents the need to make modifications to a model in a 3D modeling program for suiting minor discrepancies in an intended animation.

Another method of adding animations to a scene is by double clicking on the Animations tab and dragging a thumbnail into a channel. A popup box will show up, asking the user whether the event to be created will be a sequence or gesture event. When choosing a certain animation on the creation of gesture events, one is not restricted to the selection in the drop down menu, as hinted by the box previously mentioned. Any animation for a certain model can be used in the Gesture tool. Usually, “non-

Reference Scene

The scene file used in this article is available here.