Create Panel

The first step in creating a character is to use controls on the Create panel to create a biped. Once you've created a biped, open the Motion panel with the biped selected to display Biped controls, which allow you to animate the biped, load and save biped files, and to fit the biped to a mesh.


To create a biped

  1. Open the Create panel.

  2. On the Create panel, click Systems.

  3. Click the Biped button.

  4. Click and drag in a viewport.

    A blue bounding box appears, and after a brief pause, Biped displays a standing biped figure.

  5. Go to the Motion panel to display all the Biped controls.

    Some part of the biped must be selected for Biped controls to display on the Motion panel.

    If you are using character studio for the first time, you'll see the Authorization dialog. You'll need to authorize your copy of character studio before continuing.


Create Biped: Lets you create a biped by dragging out a rectangle in any viewport. A biped is created to match the height of the rectangle.

After initially creating a biped, you can adjust the height and structure parameters with the controls on the Create Biped rollout. Biped height and structure can also be altered, at any time, by turning on Figure mode and adjusting parameters on the Structure rollout on the Motion panel.

Create Biped rollout

About Biped: Displays the About Biped dialog, showing version, copyright, and creator information.

Creation Method Group

U\I Parameters: Uses the displayed parameters to create the biped. Click and drag in a viewport to create the biped.

Most Recent .fig File: Creates a biped, which has the proportion and structure of the most recently loaded figure file but the height of the dragged box. Click and drag in a viewport to create a biped.

If no figure file has been loaded since MAX was started, the software will look in the biped.ini file. This file contains the line:


This is the default value in the .ini file, but each time you load a new figure file, either from the Create or the Modify panel, the .ini file gets rewritten with that figure file's name. If the figure file listed in the .ini file is not found a biped of a height of 100 and all the parameters currently in the user interface will be created.

Root Name: Displays the name of the biped center of mass object. The center of mass (COM) is the root or parent of the biped hierarchy, and is visible as an octagonal object in the biped pelvis area. The Root Name is appended to all the links of the biped hierarchy.

To simplify merging a character, or to simplify selecting biped links in the Select by Name dialog on the 3DS MAX toolbar, change the default center of mass name Bip01 to the name your character will use. If you change the Root Name from Bip01 to John, for example, then all of the links will have the name John appended to them: John Pelvis, John L Thigh, and so on. You can also change the Root Name on the Structure rollout on the Motion panel.

Bip01 is the default name given to the center of mass object of the first biped created. If multiple bipeds are created, the Root Name increments and they will become Bip02, Bip03 and so on.

Load .fig File: Load a figure file.

Arms: Specifies whether or not arms will be generated for the current biped. Turn this off to create a biped without arms.

Neck Links: Specifies the number of links in the biped neck. Range=1 to 5.

Spine Links: Specifies the number of links in the biped spine. Range=1 to 5.

Leg Links: Specifies the number of links in the biped legs. Range=3 to 4.

Tail Links: Specifies the number of links in the biped tail. A value of 0 specifies no tail. Range=0 to 5.

Ponytail1/2 Links: Specifies the number of Ponytail links. Range=0 to 5.

Animate hair with ponytail links. Ponytails are linked to a character's head and can be used to animate other appendages. Reposition Ponytails in Figure mode and use them to animate a character's jaw, ears, and nose. Use Ponytails to animate any appendage that should move with the head.

Note: Ponytails can only be keyed using rotations, they will not respond to move transformations.

Fingers: Specifies the number of biped fingers. Range=0 to 5.

Finger Links: Sets the number of links per finger. Range=1 to 3.

Toes: Specifies the number of biped toes. Range=1 to 5.

Toe Links: Specifies the number of links per toe. Range=1 to 3.

Tip: For characters wearing shoes you only need one toe with one link.

Ankle Attach: Specifies the right and left ankles' point of attachment along the corresponding foot block. The ankles may be placed anywhere along the center line of the foot block from the heel to the toe.

Ankle Attach Adjusted

A value of 0 places the ankle attachment point at the heel. A value of 1 places the ankle attachment point at the toes. Click the spinner up arrow to move the ankle attach toward the toes. Range=0 to 1.

Height: Sets the height of the current biped. The biped feet stay in the same place as the biped changes height.

Triangle Pelvis: Select this control to create links from the upper legs to the lowest biped spine object when Physique is applied. Normally, the legs are linked to the biped pelvis object.

The pelvis area can be a problem when the mesh is deformed with Physique. Triangle Pelvis creates a more natural spline for mesh deformation.

Triangle Pelvis

Triangle Pelvis creates two links that extend from the legs to the lowest biped spine object. A link from the biped pelvis to the lowest spine object is also created. This provides natural deformation to this area once Physique is applied and the character is moving. If you are working on a new character, select Triangle Pelvis before applying Physique. If Bones is selected (on the Display rollout on the Motion panel), links from the legs to the lower spine object are visible.