Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Animating an object

From: Unity 4.3 Essential Training

Video: Animating an object

Animation is a powerful way to bring your environment to life. I'll uncheck Play Automatically and I'm ready to tie this into a

Animating an object

Animation is a powerful way to bring your environment to life. Beyond using the physics, we can key frame animation right here in Unity sparing us the need to make it in another program, such as 3ds Max or Maya. Now, there will be a lot of places where we'd like to animate somewhere else. There maybe more robust tools or better rigging control. But for a lot of simple animation, such as doors opening, lights turning on and fans spinning, for example, we can animate it right here. And that way we can use one model in multiple ways. Some are static and some are animated.

What I've done so far is to bring in the rest of the art, get it on those prefabs and get the right materials in. I've also brought in one of the solid walls that the art will stand on. And this way, I can start to place these walls around, put their art on, nest them underneath or parent them, and animate them. But I'll begin by looking at the animation window in animating a simple door opening. We need to make other doors operable so the player can navigate in and out of the buildings. I'll take a look at another one of the french doors, showing how to make it swing open, hold for a second or two, and then swing closed gently.

I'll open up the master building and then the gallery, and I'll scroll down to find the french doors. I'll pick French_door018 and press F to focus in. This is a french door on one of the balconies. In keeping with the other animation set to trigger earlier, I'm going to animate one of the four doors in each bay. I'll randomize which one this is, and that way the player has tension in trying to find a way out. Instead of 18, which is the same pattern as the previous animation, I'll pick 20.

This way they have to hunt around trying each one, and this will heighten the tension. I'll choose Window > Animation. In the Animation window, we start out with what looks like not a lot. We need to add in an animation curve. And we can add these in as separate objects we can call for multiple prefabs. To start out then, I can either click Add Curve and choose what to add in. Alternately, I can simply jump in and start animating, and Unity will ask me to save this as an anim file.

I'll go into the Assets folder, and into the Animations. And there's my earlier French door 11 swing anim. I'll name this one Frenchdoor20swing.anim. That way it's got its own swing, and it'll have position and rotation keyed. I'll click Save. What this does in addition to saving a separate file we can call, is allow us to stack in animations on an object. That way we can have multiple animations called in a script or sequence through them as we need. Now in the add curve, I'll scroll down and find that door.

Here's French_door020 and I'll open it up and there's the transform. In the transform, I'll pick Rotation and click on the plus next to it. Now I'm ready to animate. It starts out with a key at zero and a key at one second. Unity runs at 30 frames per second, and we can really have as much time to animate as we'd like. What I'll do is go in and delete this key at one by selecting it and right-clicking and choosing Delete Keys. Then I'll go over to 130, and I'm ready to animate.

I can either add in more keys here in the animation window or simply animate in the view. Up on top, the red play, pause and forward buttons let us know that we're animating, that we're recording what we're doing, much like auto-key in 3ds Max or Maya. I'll press E to rotate and hold Ctrl to snap this open. I'll rotate that door open. Oh, just a little past 90 and Unity makes a key automatically for me. It puts in a position and rotation key and that's okay. That's why I named this anim file specifically for this door.

Now I'll add in some more time and set it to hold for a bit, and then swing closed. I'll hold Ctrl, and scroll back in the anim window. And this way, I can add more time and see more. I'll click over at 4:30. Looking at the frames, I'm at roughly 270. It's okay to be a little off here. It'll add some character to it. Now I can either click Add a New Key, or just scrub the door back and forwards and put a key in. I'll click Add Key Frame and it puts one in in position.

The default for this is to add in a position key and while that's okay, I need a rotation key in here. What I'll do then is just hold Ctrl, click the door over and back. Later I'll come back and fix the tangents on those. Finally, I'll scroll back more, drag the time line over to 6:30 or so and close this door, again holding Ctrl so it snaps closed and animating the door closed. Now it's got an animation where the door starts out, swings open, rubber bands a bit, and swings closed.

It's good but it needs a little fine tuning. I'll pick these keys here at 1:30 and 4:30, picking one and holding Ctrl to select the other. Right-click and I've got my tangent types available. I'll pull this window up a little bit and zoom in so we can see a little better. By right-clicking, I can choose different tangents; Auto, Free Smooth, Flat, and Broken, and I've also got left and right tangent control for each. I'll choose Flat, and this way it will smooth into those keys, and they'll be flat between, having no motion.

Right now we're working in the dope sheet where we can see the key frames simply placed on the time line, and we can't actually see the curves. If we'd like to get in and adjust the curves individually, we can click on the Curves button at the bottom of the animation UI, and there we've got a traditional graph. We've got our keys available and we can get in and move them around as we need. If we zoom in far enough we'll be able to see their handles and selecting the keys shows us those Bezier handles. We can custom tune that animation to whatever we need. For now though, flat tangents will work nicely and I'll close this animation window.

My door is ready. Now what I've got on here is an animation. I'll add an animation controller onto the door by scrolling down, and choosing Add Component > Miscellaneous > Animation. There's Animation and Animator. Animator goes into Mecanim for behaviors and trees and states. Animation is far simpler and usable for things like this. I'll pick Animation and then choose that animation. I'll uncheck Play Automatically and I'm ready to tie this into a trigger collider, letting the door open when the player gets close enough.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Unity 4.3 Essential Training
Unity 4.3 Essential Training

78 video lessons · 8935 viewers

Adam Crespi

Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 57s
    1. Welcome
    2. What you should know before watching this course
    3. Using the exercise files
      1m 24s
  2. 21m 21s
    1. Designing the game
      4m 39s
    2. Setting the project
      4m 9s
    3. Exploring the Hierarchy, Scene, and Inspector windows
      5m 45s
    4. Creating and transforming objects
      6m 48s
  3. 21m 34s
    1. Organizing the Assets window
      2m 55s
    2. Exporting objects from 3D modeling programs
      8m 33s
    3. Importing and configuring models and textures
      4m 54s
    4. Setting properties for models and textures in the Inspector
      5m 12s
  4. 29m 8s
    1. Introducing the game environment
      4m 27s
    2. Placing the player controller
      4m 29s
    3. Publishing project settings
      5m 32s
    4. Adding sky and fog
      8m 17s
    5. Fine-tuning the First Person Controller
      6m 23s
  5. 57m 25s
    1. Creating the terrain geometry
      3m 29s
    2. Forming the topography
      9m 54s
    3. Painting the terrain textures
      7m 9s
    4. Painting trees and forests
      10m 55s
    5. Painting grass, shrubs, and 3D geometry
      9m 38s
    6. Painting detail meshes
      8m 46s
    7. Adjusting terrain settings
      7m 34s
  6. 39m 45s
    1. Creating materials and assigning shaders
      8m 56s
    2. Handling multiple materials
      7m 13s
    3. Adding textures to a material
      3m 57s
    4. Manipulating textures
      5m 20s
    5. Adding reflections to materials
      8m 1s
    6. Creating lit materials
      6m 18s
  7. 47m 12s
    1. Creating GameObjects
      5m 2s
    2. Understanding components
      6m 15s
    3. Using colliders for barriers
      6m 22s
    4. Using colliders for triggers
      8m 1s
    5. Exploring physics
      8m 22s
    6. Working with Physic materials
      5m 3s
    7. Adding joints to rigid bodies
      8m 7s
  8. 20m 33s
    1. Setting up prefabs for animation and batching
      5m 8s
    2. Animating an object
      6m 32s
    3. Adjusting timing in an animation
      3m 50s
    4. Animating transparency and lights
      5m 3s
  9. 11m 58s
    1. Importing skinned meshes
      4m 51s
    2. Separating animations into clips and states
      3m 14s
    3. Creating transitions between states
      3m 53s
  10. 30m 22s
    1. Customizing ambient light
      2m 59s
    2. Creating the sun using a directional light
      5m 49s
    3. Using layers and tags for lighting
      3m 32s
    4. Adding spot and point lights
      4m 25s
    5. Using point lights for fill
      4m 30s
    6. Adding and fine-tuning shadows
      5m 10s
    7. Creating lighting effects with cookies
      3m 57s
  11. 9m 15s
    1. Adding scripts to GameObjects
      2m 42s
    2. Using correct script syntax
      6m 33s
  12. 23m 7s
    1. Setting up a 2D project
      3m 13s
    2. Importing sprites
      2m 30s
    3. Slicing in the Sprite Editor
      3m 6s
    4. Layering sprites and setting the sorting order
      5m 12s
    5. Creating 2D colliders
      3m 12s
    6. Adding 2D physics
      2m 25s
    7. Animating 2D elements
      3m 29s
  13. 30m 25s
    1. Creating light shafts and sunbeams
      5m 20s
    2. Using ambient occlusion to add gravity
      4m 37s
    3. Adding depth of field
      8m 40s
    4. Applying motion blur
      5m 46s
    5. Tuning color for mood
      6m 2s
  14. 38m 16s
    1. Exploring water effects
      7m 36s
    2. Working with wind zones
      2m 8s
    3. Using an audio source
      4m 3s
    4. Creating a sound zone
      5m 59s
    5. Triggering audio
      3m 37s
    6. Adding audio effects
      3m 13s
    7. Creating particle systems
      2m 26s
    8. Adjusting particle systems
      9m 14s
  15. 25m 23s
    1. Setting up occlusion culling
      5m 52s
    2. Enabling batching to reduce draw calls
      3m 28s
    3. Testing in the game window using statistics
      4m 27s
    4. Building a development build and debugging
      6m 0s
    5. Building the executable
      5m 36s
  16. 49s
    1. Next steps

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now "Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Unity 4.3 Essential Training.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?


Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.