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#1 2021-02-24 22:27

Miku Miku Dance (13 Years later). A look back (and ahead ) to the program.

Tucson coyote here,

In case no one noticed, it's a very important day for all of us programmer/choreographers/Model makers/ videographers. We all know who we are..

it was on this date, (February 24th , 2008) that a certain program arrived on the scene and it has in the last 13 years changed a lot of ways we look at the world of art/dance/Music in general.

That program is of course: Miku Miku Dance itself.

It's funny to note that between Version 1.0 and the current version (9.3.2), There's been a lot of changes and yet the program remains the same.

This one program, this one little bit of Free Software that is available to the public, has changed the way of how we look at things today, be it for good or bad..

And in the 13 years that this C++ Program has been out a lot of new things have been added and a few that still need to be added.. and I'll go over a few of them ...

shading and more realism (Ray-cast anyone?)

What make a 3D model look very realistic? Why Shading of course and in the last 3 or o years Ray cast has been the new idea for shading 3 D models and Miku Miku Dance has supported this and in a lot of videos it shoes.. it' a leap ahead of it's time.. You want a dance video convincing use Ray cast..

But before Ray cast, there were a tone of shades out there, including Adult shader, SSAO, Toon shader an a few others. But compared to toady's ray shader, the older shaders fall short and they really shouldn't be used unless you don't have a powerful computer.. Else now Ray cast shaders is the way to go.

MME Effects (Magic on a scale you've never seen!)

Miku Miku Effects who here hasn't used them in the past.. And even today they are still as important as Ray Cast. In fact it wasn't until about 2011 or so that Miku Miku Effects broke onto the scene and this set of effects take the models and the environment and turn it into something a bit more .. Magical. Want to hold a Heavy metal dance routine with fire and explosions? Well you can do that.. Want to have Miku "use a Kamehameha wve on Neru? You can do that too. In fact until MME came out.. all the models could do was in fact dance.. no splashy effects and no losing of clothes or Wardrbe malfunctions, and no black hands that crawl up the lega and tug the panties down.. that's the thing, in today's MME, you can do a lot more.. and by a lot more you can make clothes fall off with a few sliders..pretty neat eh?

Stages stages and More stages..

Now the real point is the background here and stages and backgrounds are the way to give you a mood. Want to be on a beach? Slip on a beach stage want to be in a "Gentleman's Club (Or Strip Club as we Americans call them), and you can do that too. In fact a lot of things can be done with a few clicks of a mouse.. add in the effects and the shaders and a scene can be quite convincing.

Motions, motions and more motions (and a few weaknesses) .

This program wouldn't be called "Miku Miku Dance with out Motions, and while Poses are good, Motions are better.. and for good reason.. Yo uwant to take a current popular song and put a dance to it, there's probably a data set out there you can use.. (and new one are being made every few days.. it depends on how long the programmer wants to put into the effort.. and believe me it's a lot of work (that's why I respect ome of the people who do the choreography it's not as easy as it looks..

Which brings up the only two weaknesses I see with the program currently.. Namely Video (Trace) motion creation and of course the original MMD program not being a dynamic as it's younger brother "Miku Miku Moving (MMM). Trace motion developers need to match up their model to a video and this is MMD's only short fall, they are still using Mpeg-1 format (Considering today's videos are using MP4, I don't see why the developer doesn't drop the old format and replace it with the newer one.. After all Miku Miku Moving uses MP4 and thus it's easier to create motions that way.. and yes while MMD uses a file formate .vmd) that is interchangable between the two. I can't see why we need MMM to do this.. MMD should have been able to do this all along..

And then there,s Motion Capture (Using some sort of device like Kinnect device in order for you to make your own motions by dancing.. the technology over the last 13 years has improved on Motion capture as well and I can't see why the developer sticks with Kinnect.. maybe because this was designed with Microsoft in mind? *Shrugs shoulders*

The Bottom line: Where it's been , and where it's going.

it's hard to believe that in the 13 years the program has been around the program has a lot of uses.. and the idea is a good one, sure there is room for improvement (and all it takes is in fact a bit of C++ Code reworks, but MMD still has a future ahead of it.. and all it would take is for the developer to make the source code open in order for real programers to make the changes to keep up wit the times. The PMX. Editors are the way of the future and I don't (or rather can't ) comprehend why we can't just directly import Blender models in some other format, but then without the .PMX or the older PMD formates MMD wouldn't be what it is today.. So what now?

Well for startes we need the developers of both MMD and MMM to look to the furutre and get away from the older formates.. MMM is doding this but it lacks the MME that the MMD Engine ha..
or maybe what we need to do is sit down and talk about this.. and figure out where to take MMD to the next level.. After all this is public domain Software and I know we got quite a few C++ Programmers who could make MMD better than it is now. But until people start to switch to the more modern ways of producing motion capture and tracing of dance motions, the more the MMD will remain the same.. So maybe it's time to go to version 10, and recreate the engine all over.. or just make the necessary changes needed in order to make the program work easier and better for the programmer or the choreographer..After all as once explained to me by a fellow Iwara memeber: Motion is nothing more than a series of poses put together in order to make an animation..(and he's right you know!)

Also what about Morphs? Sure ther eare tips that can make a model lose it's clothes but without some form of designing a character to do so, the results are limited.. (only when we can have full morphing capabilities will the Ecchi modelers chortle with Glee.. After all some of us like Ecchi no?

But what are you thoughts on this.. What areas of the MMD Engine could be improved on, what needs to be revamped or changed, or should we look to accepting a new standard? I mean it's only been 13 years since Version 1.0 came out, and I have a feeling that as long as there are models and motions and effects out there, the MMD craze will still last.. and even though we are in tough times with (The pandemic) and what not. MMD can be either enjoyable or frustating.. I know that I was frustrated in creting motions.. (Still am) but other ideas are a deligh..

But let's hear you thought on all of this.. oh and Happy Birthday MMD, you're a teenager now.. Time to grow up and become an adult..

Tucsoncoyote

2021-02-25 01:08

I love MMD and have been watching YouTube videos since 2013 for about 5 years. I have watched over 6000 videos. I know almost all the authors. I myself started working with this program 1.5 years ago. And during that time I only had gaps with normal quality Raycast tutorials and model animation tutorials. They are very difficult to find. There are practically none. People don't want to share their experiences with others. There are a lot of substandard tutorials on the net. They are made mainly by schoolchildren. Where 80% is just chatter and dust in the eyes. How to load a model into mmd and how to cast a raycast!
Personally, I was brought to MMD by the game Project Diva and Miku. I have always believed that I do not want to be a simple consumer. And I want to create something of my own and be an artist. There is a lot of bullshit in the MMD community. I see the authors of the subwoofer quarreling over Miku. And build intrigues around the community. I see who is jealous and who is having fun. It cannot be hidden. I can see right through every video author. I see one MMD community subscribing only to their friends, ignoring everyone else. As if it would change something. This does not make them unique. I see some people hide their subscriptions and I know why they do it. There is a lot of bullshit in the MMD community. You can say that MMD is a program to realize your desires in something, be it income or popularity, or you want to prove something to everyone! I dont know.
I know that everyone loves this girl. MMD is a program that was created only for Miku.
And I see that everyone wants her to be the most desirable and only one for him))
I see how some authors are jealous of others. It is impossible to hide it! I dont know! it's hard to say what MMD means for everyone.

2021-02-25 02:38

I had no idea of the MMD release date. ٩ (* ´◒` *) ۶

here is the first video that I made by myself ...
youtube.com/watch?v=VFcMGz51Bcs

I have spent a lot of my life on this wonderful software, it was time very well spent. ٩ (๑ > ◡ < ๑) ۶

no tenia idea de la fecha de lanzamiento del MMD. ٩(*´◒`*)۶

aqui esta el primer video que yo hice por mi misma...
youtube.com/watch?v=VFcMGz51Bcs

mucho tiempo de mi vida he gastado en este maravilloso software, fue un tiempo muy bien gastado. ٩(๑>◡<๑)۶

2021-02-25 10:34

Hmm where to start, I think it was back in 2011 or maybe a bit later that I discover MMD on niconico with a video called Alice Raps to Two faced lovers (sm15441436) and that got me into MMD and Touhou, well that and the Bad Apple video, it was a busy month, hmm on those days I was kinda lost, my father died on 2010 and I was unemployed, I dropped out of university back in 2002 and I was pretty much trying to find myself, I was supposed to the an electromechanical engineer by then but I just stopped liking it, and that was the second university I attended trying to make it, and that is when my nihilism got just too strong and well it is still here but back then it made me just reject everything and start looking for something different, I just accepted that I am one of those assholes that hates following orders and working for others so I just opened a small shop in my house and it is still standing, somehow, when I found that Touhou MMD video I got curious and searched and downloaded it, I started collecting dance motions and then I found the R-18 goodness and oh boy, I started trying to animate my favorite model that was Api Miku back in those days, it was pretty fun, I even uploaded my first animation to Vimeo and got banned lol, it wasn’t even explicit, no nudity at all, kinda ironic considering what is allowed there these days, and to this date is the only site I’ve been banned from, and I was just a normal user for about two years, trying to make animations and videos, but it didn’t take long for me to get fed up with all the “rules” people put on the models, and me being the kinda guy that I am, I said to my self, F’em I don’t need your shit I will make my own, and nothing happened until I what people where using to make models and I found Metasequoia and boom, it was a paid program, but I found some nice tutorial by a guy called Saboten I think

2021-02-25 10:36

someone recommended blender to me back in 2013 and I estimated it would take me about a year to learn how to make my own model, given that I new nothing about 3D modeling or model making for MMD, and most info was in Japanese, and what little I could find in English was very scatted all over the web, didn’t matter, it took me around 10 months to learn, and I learned by doing, first blender’s interface tutorials, then modeling, then topology and then human body modeling, I got me a good amount of reference and made my first model following a certain tutorial called Blenderella and some others as a complement since the former didn’t model the whole body, it didn’t have feet or genitalia, feet I got from another tutorial and genitalia I just made it up as I went along, it didn’t look good, but I still used it to learn how to make an MMD model and it was a success in that aspect, I learned how to use PMXe with that model, once again there were almost no tutorials in english but it wasn’t that hard to figure stuff out on my own most of the time, back then I even tried making mods my self, I made 2, one head swap of Nigamon’s Alice Margatroid, I gave her a body with a bikini, and another, I used the legs of the base I made and used them on Flandre and Remilia Scarlet models by Suke, by that time I was already a member on Iwara and I made a video, I even made new underwear for them, I downloaded a bunch of models and studied them on PMXe trying to learn more, around 2 months later Izumi was born, her 1st version that is, right around Christmas 2014, and the rest is history, I found what I liked to do, after years of just doing nothing and trying to find something I liked I finally found something, I have a lot to thank to MMD to be honest, it was a blessing, these days it something that is keeping me afloat with this Varus thing going on my shop is pretty much dead, but I was fortunate to have found MMD.

2021-02-25 10:37

On the topic of the program itself

Making videos on MMD is quite something you know, even though it was not meant to be used to make high quality 3D animations you can still make some impressive stuff, I am one of those guys that doesn’t like to use RAY, mainly because I find it to be very counter intuitive trying to make an anime inspired character look “real”, what I find attractive about anime is that is NOT real, if I wanted something real I’d go outside, nothing beats “real life graphics”, I like to go for a more stylized look, but still with some bells and whistles, this is a problem present with the gaming industry these days, they shoot for realism, meanly because they are artistically bankrupt and they are just lazy, but maybe that is just me, someone that doesn’t give a shite about “immersion”, I am someone that thinks that there only one escape from reality and everyone escapes it that way in the end, I just can’t even begin to fool my self with “immersion”, but that is just me, I enjoy fantasy because it is fantasy.

It still amazed me what some creators can do with no use of shaders at all, those to my are real genius, most of them make action and fight sequences, I think they are pro animators that just happen to like using MMD, maybe not.

2021-02-25 10:37

As for animation making

Well to be honest I stopped using MMD for making animations almost immediately, it is just to bare bones in that aspect, as soon as I found MMM I gravitated toward that, it is just superior in every way to MMD, almost, there are some things that I still make use of in MMD but I make the bulk of the animation on MMM and MMM2, but as far as I know MMM is now abandonware, Mogg seems to be a very unfocused programmer that lost interest on developing MMM and starts making new software rather than improving what needs to be improved, or maybe that is just the Japanse way, still using fax machines these days and stuff you know, I wrote to him a couple times and reported some bugs and he responded a couple times, very limited responses but hey at least it was something, I think it was 2 years ago that I asked him if he was willing to make MMM open source is he was unable or unwilling to improve MMM, he never responded, I might have offended him but I never pressed him for an answer, and last year I found out about 2 projects trying to make an MMD replacement, one called NekoNekoDance, that was supposed to have DX12 support, I should have downloaded the alpha, the site was taken out and I guess they gave up, that was a Japanese project, I think I can still find traces of that on NicoNico, another non Japanese project was focusing on Vulkan but that one I didn’t get much info about, just word of mouth, both project were focusing on native support for better shaders and better physics engine, I think I can still find some test videos of NekoNekoDance’s physics but alas I think time will tell.

2021-02-25 10:38

What I’d like to see on MMD is mostly more powerful features for animation, like a graphical editor, like the one on MMM2, support for interpolation for morphs, Spline interpolation support like MMM, better UI performance, a more refined 3D view even MMM could be a little better, support for model scaling like MMM, support for multiple audio tracks and being able to move them, like MMM, of course the implementation of soft bodies physics like it was meant to be done, a better way to animate the camera and multi camera and multi light source support, increased key frame limit, a scrub bar, make OP key frames separate for each bone, bone layers and animation clips like MMM, native support for Normal, specular and light maps, better codec support, a user manual wouldn’t hurt, a better way to swith between IK and FK, an update to the IK solver wouldn’t hurt either, I’ve always wanted to play with the enhanced mode but it only supports PMD models, it would be nice if you could tune models with it on MMD directly, a “last opened” and reload options would hurt either, support for more audio and video formats AVI needs to go already, and I don’t know I’d have to give it more though to find more stuff I think would be nice.

Is one of the JP bros here can read these and is willing to reach Mogg-san and try to convince him to release the code for MMM that would be godly.

2021-02-25 15:06

And here is what my very first MMD render looked like:
youtube.com/watch?v=q8tLgjt6IwE
(I hope your first one looked worse than mine?)

2021-02-26 01:50

I'm glad to know that i am not the only one who was banned from Vimeo :-)

2021-02-26 22:59

Well , let's get back on topic shall we?

First off , while MMD (the original engine), does have it's Merits, it does have some weaknesses too. One of them that stands out is in fact the video feature where it allows you to run videos in the background. This is in fact the primary weakness as most of today's videos are not MPeg-1 (MP1), but rather MP4, and this is hindering a lot of trace motion creators severely. Now MMM does have the MP4 feature, but lacks the ability for things like MME effects. so that's one thing they need to do in the future.

Another thing is the fact that MMD is also suffering from the fact that it still uses DirectX 9.0. Most computers today are running Window 10, and are using Direct X 11 or 12, and thus the engine is about 5 years behind what it could be.

By just doing these two simple upgrades and making the engine more like MMM, and keeping the MME effects in (and this includes Ray-cast as the new standard), I feel that MMD could be around for another 10 or so years.. It's all about upgrading the coding.. (and also by doing this there could be multiple versions for each language. Also, why not a built in .PMX Editor? That's just an extra feature but still it would make the engine more versatile. So the question is, will the programmers do this? or will they keep the same (Old) standards. It's time for MMD to go from just a little Kid (which is now a teenager), to a full blown adult. That's where I would like to see this program go.. To something that everyone can use, and quite easily. (Guess that's why MMM is starting to become the norm now.)

2021-02-27 08:12

wrong, MMD has that outdated DirectX 9.0c somehow attachd to it but it also has full OpenGL support. that explain why MME effects got unlimited potential we dont have to worry about it, the PMX viewer and editor also operates with OpenGL features D;

The software itselfs seems to be very outdated and basic but The Future of MMD are those build in effects and the apperence of better quality Models. With 3 OUTSTANDING female Characters that he contribute Mister Pink raisd the Bar for high Quality Models just a few monts ago and we can see many new exciting Models on the horizon just from 2020. I mean Alice the Gate Opener has a full detail Pussy now :L Also everyone is useing Raycast you barely see videos that use different effects. The videoquality rised noticeable for the past two years also because people started to use Blender

2021-02-27 09:35

I have to disagree on that one, what MR pink does is flashy yes, but high quality?, I could also start using an automatic human body generator like "MakeHuman" or "VROID STUDIO" too, cut off the head and slap an anime head, subdivided it more than needed and call it a day, reusing the mesh is fine and all but I at least would try to research anatomy a bit so I can place the genitalia and anus close to where they should be, the weight painting in "his" models leaves much to be desired too, I suspect it is generated automatically too due to the very crude results he gets, why automatic? because I doubt he takes the time to manually weight paint the ridiculous amount of vertex he generated and it's quite bad if he does it by hand, the mesh rips itself apart in some places, the rig is not an MMD meta rig so I don't think that benefits anybody, I mean damn and those prices for characters that are not yours, why not sell them on DLsite then?, subdivision overkill does not make a model high quality you know, no english translation on some models, bones with the wrong type settings, very poor organization if any, but they is flashy, a pretty good scam if you ask me, and yes people have started using blender, mainly chinese users, for clothe sims and a far superior rendering engine, but they still use the same animations everyone uses too, so I hardly see much improvement there, just a lazy way to catch people's eyes for the same content, the same city night back ground, a sports car and a girl dancing, not very interesting.

2021-02-27 10:23

the only thing Blender users have to do is to adopt to the original raycast MMD style. if they can make it looks like that than we are fully able to migrate everyone to Blender. But for now MMD still looks the best, there is no doubt. those chinese creators somehow have a different style that is not as appealing despite all the cool features Blender provides. Once we are able to imitate the original style we definetely will migrate to different Software.

The appeal of Mister Pink Models is artistic. He has good taste and thats really all that matters. Sirius, Baltimare and Mona all S+ Rank characters.

There is also a very good Mona Model from this Guy //ecchi.iwara.tv/users/mdjsn
shes atm best girl ! We made it guys" we secured Rank No 1 for a twin tailed gorl once again X3

DL site offers some amazing models you should check it out :3

2021-02-27 10:18

I have to disagree on that one too, it is not artistic appeal, it is the appeal of already known and established popular characters, the characters were already popular to begin with and thus it is very easy to make something mediocre but good looking and making a quick buck that way, why do you think people are jumping on the Genshin impact and wagon now, gatcha players waste money already so it would be easy to extract a few more coins from them, no need for talent for character design or no need for a ton of publicity, like I said it is a pretty good scam.

That Mona is a quality model indeed, the polygon count is low and yet due to the high quality texture work the model still look good, ...

However, it is a model edit too, and most likely a game rip to boot, so points taken away for that.

and no thanks I don't need to go to DLsite for that, I can make my own If I wanted to.

2021-02-27 10:36

Results all that matters, people will not ask if that was hard to acomplish or if you had to sell your soul for it.

I would gladly jump on that genshin Impact train because thats the new big thing that is here to stay. we are going to have a Genshin Impact category.

Its the Game we all going to play because we can not buy a Playstation 5 D;

2021-02-27 11:50

I disagree ٩(*´◒`*)۶

I never used the mmm (mikumikumoving or something like that) I did not like its interface type msoffice XD.

the MMD has its charm. When I see a video (poorly) made in MMD I think, it is very well done to be MMD.
and when I see a video (poorly) made in Blender or others I think, "so many tools and they just made that slop".
Making videos in MMD is like making craft beer, it tastes ugly, it has a bad texture but you say "you can't ask for much, it's not that bad"

2021-02-27 17:45

I know this transformation will be a painfull process, i would totally hate it when all videos look chinese blender style or when the japanese music dissapear if things continue like this. what the fuk is this Puth Hon anyways??. the most save way would be probably just keep useing MMD. But thats also the most lazy way D;

//ecchi.iwara.tv/videos/97zrys3gz4czbjbbz

2021-02-27 23:37

Well, let's slightly change the subject and talk about MMD and standardization in general. I've noted that not all models have a set standard so to speak. I think a bit of it has to o with the fact that some people tend to as some claim "Get lazy" and jsut whip up a model and just rig it poorly. and thus it can look horrible when using certain motions. Is this the fault of the model itself? No, it's the fault that some folks are lazy an don't want to take the time to rig up a model properly. I mean Here's a few examples I found :

https://mmda.booru.org/index.php?page=post&s=view&id=2559 : Use this with the "On the floor motion" and you'll see what I'm getting at.

But that's just one example. Some people fail to ad din features like "Groove Bones' or even "Mother bones" and this can be both frustrating and time consuming to a person who wants to turn out a quality bit of work, only to have it fail because of a model's poor rigging. And this is where we need some sort of Model standardization. But because of the fact that some folks use Blender, some use other program, there's no real consistency here, and thus you ahve a lot of models you can't use.. And then, there's variety.. A lot of models could have some form of Improvement yet they don't because modelers don't want to spend the time adding things like Nipples, an working body parts and morphs, and thus too is an issue... (an then there's the lack of variety in clothing styles for certain characters. which to me is a real disappoint ment.

In short, I feel that some of us should get together and work on making models more standardized and make the work properly but the way some folks crank out models? It makes you wonder if folks are wanting to turn out models versus quality model (Quantity over quality) . But let's hear some feed back on this one as well.

Tucson coyote

2021-03-03 11:48

I absolutely would like to see more standardisation in English-language naming for bones and morphs. More often than not you'll open a model and find either unnamed bones and morphs because only the Japanese names are filled in, or names like "Migimuneka" and "Left people the finger 1" because the names were all run through Google Translate and not checked after that.

I'd love if someone who knows what they're doing could take some of the crappier models out there (an example off the top of my head being NaughtyGamerPro's Flannery model) and fix them up. It'd make a good series on Youtube which serves both to benefit the community by making available fixed versions of these models and to educate by showing how to fix common problems.

2021-03-03 16:57

Ketsuban, I couldn't agree more and in fact if you want to see the worst of the worst, you have to look no further than this set of models right here:
https://mmda.booru.org/index.php?page=post&s=view&id=1147

The reason I state for Standardization is that here's a good set of TDA models (all they would need is a bit of a fix up on the anatomical sense (Nipples and Working Vags ), and they woul be good. But what's the problem you might be asking? Well download those models (or PM me and I'll send you a copy) and when you open them up in PMX Eitor, you see that the language entered in there isn't even Japanese. It's Russian/Serbian. Now who in their right mind here knows hot to translate that language into something either Japanese and/or English? Very few do.. and only Google Translate can give you an idea of what it MIGHT be. An this is where our problems begin. No standardization. Ether in Japanese or English (Considering that English is slowly becoming the "Standard" language of the world, wouldn't you think it would be only logical to have some sort of standardization of models? I think that's the logical outcome of all of this.

And that's the problem with the moel makers not th epeople who program the choreography here. A lot of the models are flawed because of the issue of the modelers are either (1) lazy or (2) don't care. an it's these two things that take a lot of models and turn them into train wrecks. yet others work perfectly.. Also there should be able to be some sort of interchangeability betwe3en bodies and heads, but this will be brought up in an upcoming post of mine.. That's the issues here. Lack of standards and laziness. Once we get those two things out of the way, then the rest will fall into place smoothly. Any arguments for/against that?

Tucsoncoyote