To work most efficiently with bipeds, it is important to follow the general workflow described in this topic.

Create Skin Geometry

Before you create a skeleton for a character, have a character skin ready to put the skeleton into.

Create a basic skin shape for your character using any of the 3ds Max modeling tools and surface types. Be sure to place your character's skin in a neutral pose with arms outstretched and legs spaced slightly apart. You may also want to add sufficient detail to your skin's mesh or control points around joints to facilitate deformation during movement.

Character mesh in a neutral pose

TipBefore adding a biped skeleton, freeze your character mesh. When the mesh is frozen, you can still see it, but you can't select or alter it, reducing the chance for error or frustration.

Create a Biped Skeleton

Once you have a character mesh, you can create a biped skeleton to fit inside. Use Figure mode to set up your biped.

Before you position the skeleton, use controls on the Structure rollout to alter the biped to match your mesh, setting the number of links for the spine, arms, neck, or fingers, or adding props to represent weapons or tools.

TipYou can use ponytails to create animated jaws, ears, or horns.
NoteCertain biped body parts, including fingers, tails, ponytails, props, and clavicles, can be repositioned in Figure mode to suit different characters.

When you position the biped inside your mesh, start with the center of mass (COM), which is the parent of all objects in the biped hierarchy. The COM should be positioned in line with the hips of the mesh character. Scale the pelvis so that the legs fit properly in the mesh, and then use Move and Scale on the 3ds Max toolbar to position your biped skeleton.

NoteIn addition to the standard move, rotate, and scale operations, you can also use modifiers to adjust the parts of the biped.
NoteBiped body parts cannot be removed, however unwanted parts can be hidden. If you delete a part the entire biped will be deleted.

The following list includes some tips for positioning your skeleton:

When you are satisfied with your pose, check the alignment in all viewports to make sure that the skeleton is positioned correctly in the mesh.

Once you have successfully positioned a skeleton inside your character mesh, you are ready to attach the mesh with Physique. For more on this workflow, see Understanding Physique.