Aliens, they're everywhere!

So I've returned to rigging the aliens for the VFX short I'm a part of, and I'm trying to get the alien sorted for tomorrow (but I really can't see that happening...).  Currently I've been trying to work out how to rig armour pads, ones specifically on the shoulders.

If you watch this clip, around 45 seconds you'll get what I mean!

And the guys says "it was a simple rig setup"  HOW SIMPLE?!  Anyway, I've been on my TechArtist forums and I've been given too forms of advice.  My question was as follows:

Hey everyone, it's my first post so I'd like to say hello to you all out there. :)

Bit of info.; I'm quite a novice TD, in my final year of studying CG animation so this last few months I've focused all my work into character rigging. I haven't done any scripting before so if this answer is regarding scripting please excuse my n00bi-ness and explain it to me? haha, thank you!

Anyway... onto the assistance!

I'm rigging an alien for a VFX film my fellow peirs are working on. The alien has huge armor shoulder pads (like a knights) and I was wondering how I'd skin it? I want to show the illusion of, almost like a secondary motion witht he armor, so as you move the arm up (in fk or ik) the armor will eventually follow the movement.

How would I go about doing this? If you require any jpegs I can provide them.

Thanks in advance. :)

First piece of advice was;

Take a look at using dynamics such as springs to give the characters "shoulderpad bones" secondary motion. Playing with dynamics requires a lot of tweaking, especially to prevent interpenetration. Be ready to noodle.

Here's a video of spring dynamics. Google will reveal a bunch of other stuff.

 Which was really interesting, using dynamics wasn't something I'd covered so it was really interesting to learn, and it's pretty cool!  Unfortunately it wasn't helping me with what I wanted.  So I went back to the forums and posted the (top of blog entry) video so they'd understand more of what I meant.

Here was the second piece of advice;

Look at the muscle spline rig node.. used it on some shoulder pads and worked great as a way to auto keep them out of the way and add shake... one end child of shoulder other child of clav. Adjust and skin shoulder pad to joint rig.

Taken from one of the founders of Rigging Do-Jo!  Neat.  So who'd have thought muscles may work in the situation?  I'm still developing the idea so I'll post something up later to show you a successful workflow!  Seems to be working great so far, just need to add bones to it as well.

Until then.

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