Editor: David Arandle

Introduction

If you’re like me and have been using GoAnimate to create low cost explainer videos or other animated cartoons then you’ll certainly have discovered many of  GoAnimate’s limitations. You may even be looking for an alternative? CrazyTalk Animator 2 by Reallusion is a professional animation studio that, like GoAnimate, requires no drawing skills at all but can give you more flexibility to animate your ideas exactly as you visualise them. It may be the animation solution you’ve really be looking for.

GoAnimate, a cloud based and easy to learn animation studio, gives you access to an extensive library of predefined and pre-animated content. It’s pretty great and highly optimised for the business market. However new users run into the limitations very quickly. Usually by discovering a character can’t perform some action they need, often having to find some kind of compromise or work around.

CrazyTalk Animator 2 is a software application, available for PC or MAC, that brings advanced character animation within the  reach of almost anyone. Its relatively easy to learn animation studio includes several ready made,  customisable avatars that can be animated with predefined 2D and 3D motions (or you can create your own motions entirely from scratch). Also included is a selection of backgrounds and props to get you started.

Production time between GoAnimate and CrazyTalk Animator 2 is comparable but largely dictated by the needs of each project. I’ve found that projects of similar lengths can be completed in CrazyTalk Animator 2 in about the same amount of time if sticking to predefined content and motions.

Unlike GoAnimate, CrazyTalk Animator 2 is a one time purchase. There are no ongoing monthly fees and all purchased content is royalty free – meaning you can use it in both commercial and non-commercial productions.

What You Can Do with CrazyTalkAnimator 2 that You Can’t with GoAnimate

One of the most common complaints I’ve heard from GoAnimate users is not being able to show characters facing away from the camera. CrazyTalk Animator 2’s Multi-dimensional Avatars (characters) consist of ten different views working together so the Avatar can be viewed from almost any angle. The program automatically calculates which view of every body part needs to be displayed in order to achieve your pose or animated sequence. You’ll never be frustrated by only one or two viewing angles again.

The avatars are not truly three dimensional but the software treats them as if they are. As such you can even import 3D motions created in iClone (Reallusion’s 3D movie studio) and use them with your CrazyTalk Animator 2 Avatars (note this is a Pipeline feature only).

CrazyTalk Animator 2 has the ability to create animated characters from photos with it’s morphed based heads. Surprisingly easy to create, you can add these heads to any character body for a very unique look to your animation. If you run a business imagine putting yourself right into your animation for a more personal message.

Avatars and props can also be rendered in up to 9 different preset styles in just a few clicks. Choose from line art, neon, pop art and more. You can even control the thickness of your Avatars outlines on individual body parts if you want to emphasise things closer to the camera – or remove the lines altogether.

With a lot of effort, you can simulate perspective in GoAnimate. CrazyTalk Animator 2, by default, creates perspective automatically using a perspective based camera. Move characters and props closer or further away from the camera and their size will be modified accordingly. Pan across a scene and things closer to the camera will move faster than those further away. It’s all done automatically – you don’t have to think about it all.

The perspective camera includes a number of different lens simulations for added effect or, if you want your entire scene to have a more flat look switch to the orthographic camera.

For business users who rely on Power Point, Keynote or other similar programs, CrazyTalk Animator 2 can be used to create unique character based clip art or custom made animated GIFs to really get your presentations moving. Export single images as transparent PNG files or export animated sequences as GIF animations.

You could also use your PNG Clip art to personalize your products and other illustration based advertising with your CrazyTalk Animator 2 Avatar.

Right now if you take up a trial offer of Crazytalk Animator 2 you can get a whole library of free GIF’s for use in your own presentations.  http://www.reallusion.com/crazytalk/presentation/gifbonus.aspx

Conclusion

CrazyTalk Animator 2 is worth considering if you’re finding GoAnimate too limiting. It’s relatively easy to learn, includes plenty of content to get you started and its multi-dimensional avatars present almost unlimited possibilities in realising your animated vision.

No monthly fees and royalty free content makes it a great solution for creating business explainer or training videos. If that sounds like something you’re interested in then visit Reallusion’s business product page to learn more.  http://www.reallusion.com/crazytalk/presentation/default.aspx

If you see yourself as someone who has a wider, more general interest in animation with a vision for  creating animated web shorts – or even animation for TV – then visit Reallusion’s Product page for Animation Professionals.  http://www.reallusion.com/crazytalk/animator/default.aspx

To read the completed article

About David Arandle

Online I am known as TET or ‘The Extraordinary Tourist’. My real name is ‘David Arandle’. I’m a self represented artist, video maker and writer of social commentary observations amongst many other things. I’m currently based in Gawler, South Australia.

 

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