Adding a Camera Bone to a Viewmodel

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What are camera bones?

Camera bones are bones that affect player's view, the in-game camera will copy rotation/transforms from your "camera" bone that you've created in your animation software, allowing animators to create good looking handmade camera effects for animations.

How to do

Adding it is extremely simple, go to view.cpp:1208 Inside of void CViewRender::Render( vrect_t *rect ), scroll down to line 1408 where you should add the following code:

		// Handle camera anims

		if (!UseVR() && pPlayer && cl_camera_anim_intensity.GetFloat() > 0)
			if (pPlayer->GetViewModel(0))
				int attachment = pPlayer->GetViewModel(0)->LookupAttachment("camera");
				if (attachment != -1)
					int rootBone = pPlayer->GetViewModel(0)->LookupAttachment("camera_root");
					Vector cameraOrigin = Vector(0, 0, 0);
					QAngle cameraAngles = QAngle(0, 0, 0);
					Vector rootOrigin = Vector(0, 0, 0);
					QAngle rootAngles = QAngle(0, 0, 0);

					pPlayer->GetViewModel(0)->GetAttachmentLocal(attachment, cameraOrigin, cameraAngles);
					if (rootBone != -1)
						pPlayer->GetViewModel(0)->GetAttachmentLocal(rootBone, rootOrigin, rootAngles);
						cameraOrigin -= rootOrigin;
						cameraAngles -= rootAngles;

						DevMsg("camera attachment found\n");
					view.angles += cameraAngles * cl_camera_anim_intensity.GetFloat();
					view.origin += cameraOrigin * cl_camera_anim_intensity.GetFloat();

After you've added this code, go and add a new ConVar somewhere on top of that file (or anywhere else):

ConVar cl_camera_anim_intensity("cl_camera_anim_intensity", "1.0", FCVAR_ARCHIVE, "Intensity of cambone animations");

With that you are done on the code side.

Modeling notes

On the modeling side, inside of your animation software of choice you will need two bones in the viewmodel that you plan to support this feature.

  • First bone needs to be named camera_root, this bone should NOT move at all and should not be animated,
  • Second make a bone named camera, this is the bone we want to animate, when you keyframe and animate it's rotation, it should be reflected in game provided you added the code above, if you want a preview of how the camera effects will look like in game, make the animation software's "Camera" object a child of the camera bone (make sure to read that twice, a lot of overlapping names).
  • Then create 2 attachments on the 2 bones that are named the same as the bone
Note.pngNote:the attachments X axis needs to point to where the player is looking. Inside of HLMV the X axis is represented by a red line when you select the attachment

Here is an example of what it looks like in action.

See also