WTF Hovering and poses

Caliandris

New member
Joined
Sep 26, 2018
Messages
226
SL Rez
2004
Joined SLU
2006?
I discovered some glitches with hover height this week and I have been wondering if everyone else already knew about them and just didn't talk about them, or if it is not generally known and thought I'd share. It's been a while since I did any commercial creation. My antipathy to mesh creation has kept me out of it for a while, but I bought some full perms meshes and have been messing around with texturing etc. In the course of my creation I have been using poseballs for putting in sits for something I am creating - yeah it's old fashioned, but does have some advantages over the other ways to set animations.

I have a mesh body and I have been buying quite a lot of clothing and shoes for my newer mesh body, and I have found that while some of them come with an undershoe which seems to set the avatar height, some don't. When I found my avatar was ankle deep in the ground, I used the hover height slider on the appearance menu to adjust my avatar's height. However, when I came to sit on a pose ball a day or so later, I realised I was floating way above it. I started to adjust the pose ball, but a friend pointed out that my hover height might be affecting it. And so it proved to be. Pose balls in general assume your hover height will be 0 and so when I changed it back to zero I was again sitting on the pose ball correctly.

However, when I stood up, I was buried in the ground again, and could not understand why, as I was wearing flat shoes. Eventually I traced the problem to the hover height in the Edit Shape menu, which was set at 48 instead of 50. But that led me to the discovery that not only are there two hover height settings, one where the 0 setting is the the default and the other where the 50 setting is the default, but that they are independent of each other. That explains a number of confusing incidents over the past few weeks.

I don't know how new the hover height slider is... on firestorm you right click the avatar, choose appearance and then hover height is one of the options, which brings the slider to the top of the screen. If instead, you click appearance and then edit shape, the hover height slider is one of the options in the window which opens. Anyone have any insight into why they are independent of each other? Can they be scripted?

It's jolly difficult to plan out games for both female and male avatars who have different body shapes anyway, and may be different heights and may have hover height set at different levels and - like me - may be unaware that their setting in one of the menues is conflicting with the setting in the other.
 
Last edited:
  • 1Thanks
Reactions: Brenda Archer

Archer

Who knew?
Joined
Sep 20, 2018
Messages
245
SL Rez
2007
Joined SLU
2007
I had no idea they were independent! I am always having to adjust mine, and I actually keep the small slider open on my screen for that purpose.
 

Amity Slade

Active member
Joined
Sep 24, 2018
Messages
66
SL Rez
2007
Joined SLU
Oct 2010
SLU Posts
3965
Here is what I think is going on with hover, based on what I have seen with animations I have made.

Avatar height adjusts your avatar body proportions. Hover height adjusts the relationship between your avatar and the ground.

The difference is almost indistinguishable when you are standing upright. That's because your avatar height is lined up on the same axis as hover height- that is, up-down in relation to the ground.

When you use a poseball, or furniture without poseballs, the poseball or furniture script may rotate your avatar. Taking your avatar from rotating to lying flat may involve a 90-degree rotation. Avatar height is operating relative to your avatar orientation, so the length of your avatar does not change. However, hover height is pushing your avatar up or down in relation to the ground, regardless of your avatar rotation.

This wasn't an issue for older animations/scripts- rotating the whole avatar body to lie down via script was pretty much the same thing as rotating the hips in the animation (and there are a lot of good reasons to rotate the avatar by script rather than rotating the hips in the animation). Even with newer (made for Bento!) animations, I am not sure of how many animators are aware of the problem of using the posing script to rotate the avatar along the horizontal axis as it affects mesh bodies that rely on hover. I discovered it by trial-and-error, and I haven't seen it addressed anywhere.

System avatars did not have the issue of standing on the ground when wearing high heels, because system shoes were included in the overall avatar height calculation that placed an avatar's feet on the ground.

Hover height is a bad way to deal with mesh avatar height. Making animations that do not rely on rotating the avatar along the horizontal axis is a band-aid workaround- but animations consistently made that way will at least allow a player to turn off hover height once when using a poseball or furniture, rather than seeing the avatar sink or float again each time the animation changes.

Edit: I haven't made animations in a while, I hope I didn't mis-remember it, between whether it's avatar height that is relative to avatar position and hover that is relative to the ground, or vice-versa.
 
Last edited:
  • 1Thanks
Reactions: Brenda Archer