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What good free and widely used tools are there for editing 2D skeletal animations? Preferably, one that allows me to write custom animation exporters.

One pretty good indie tool that I know of Demina, but it's not ideal. It doesn't allow you to export the data as you want (although, it is open source, so you can change that) and I find it clunky in how you edit individual joints.

What other tools would you recommend?

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closed as not constructive by Josh Petrie, Byte56, Nicol Bolas, Sean Middleditch, Anko Jun 13 '13 at 9:27

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Spine from EsotericSoftware looks pretty good: esotericsoftware.com –  mcintyre321 Jun 12 '13 at 12:36
    
Blender is supposed to be very good at this as well. I'm in the process of researching this option for my own games. mmm.albinal.com/2d-in-blender-2-6-tutorial-part-1 –  user31796 Jun 12 '13 at 14:21
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1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Personally I would just use a 3D tool and ignore one of the dimensions. Something like Maya is likely going to be a lot more robust than some custom tool just to do 2D animations.

There are a handful of games that I've worked on and that I know about that have used this approach. As an example, here's an article that talks about Zombieville USA (iOS game) and how they do it. http://www.thecareergamer.com/braaaains-zombieville-usa-tech-review/ Scroll down to the first picture to see what they're doing.

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+1 That's some pretty cool info, thanks for the link. –  David Gouveia Jan 6 '12 at 19:35
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