Dim3 Inspire

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Inspire is a general purpose mesh animation tool branched off of dim3 Animator. While Inspire continues to fully support dim3, it also aims to be helpful to the rest of the Mac development community. Inspire can be used as part of your dim3 installation, or it can be used all by itself!

Inspire adds powerful new features such as automated bone generation, intuitive tools and user interface improvements, support for both Wavefront Object and Alias FBX exportation (for seamless integration with modellers such as Cheetah3D, Cinema4D, Maya and even other game creation applications like Unity), Macromedia Flash exportation, and much more!

URL: www.littlegenerals.com/inspire/
Tutorials: www.littlegenerals.com/inspire/tutorials/
Current Version: www.littlegenerals.com/inspire/dim3_inspire.zip

Known Issues

  • Remember to scale your models when importing into Dim3 Inspire. For some reason, Dim3 Inspire uses integers instead of floats to store vertex information, so if you want to preserve small features or if you have modeled at a small scale, remember to scale it up by factor 100-500.
  • If you put a model in your game world and then delete/add an object or component it will lose its prefab connection to the 3D file (blender or other) it came from and if that file is reimported with new objects in it it won't take effect. However edits to verts, uvs and removing objects inside the original objects will be recognized.
  • You have to re-add all the colliders to an object imported from Blender

You should probably bake the scale and rotation in Object Mode before importing into Unity. Select Object>Clear/Apply>Apply Size/Rotation. This "bakes" the transformations into the model.


  • To rotate the view, hold down the command (apple) key while dragging the LMB
  • To zoom, hold down the option key while dragging
  • To pan, hold down the space bar while dragging
  • To select vertices, hold down the shift key
  • To de-select vertices, hold down the control key

Unity Scale Calibration


Meshes (Modelling)

Object Reorientation

When importing an object (.obj) from Blender into Inspire, the orientation will be different from what is seen in the Blender 3D view. That’s easily corrected in Blender: After modeling in the front view, flip the object backwards 90 degrees so that the front is now on top. Then pack the data and export it as an .obj. The Blender object can also be modeled in the top view without the need to flip it, especially if a background image is being used as a guide.

Textures (UV's)



Adding Bones

Bones can either be "added" to or "generated" within the model. It seems easier and more efficient to “add” the bones (using “Add Bones...”) one by one and moving them both manually (by dragging the pink cube at the center of the coordinate cursor) and through typing in the coordinates, until the full skeleton is set up within the object. When a bone is first added, only the cursor is visible. To make the bone visible and to connect it to another bone--its "parent"--drag the "child" bone to the "parent" bone in the heirarchy view. Now the bones can be further adjusted by dragging their end points. (Note: It may be easier to move the newly added bones if the coordinate cursor is placed where the bone is supposed to go, so that when the bone is "parented" to another, the visible bone is fully extended, making it easier to drag the end points). The vertices are then attached to the bones using the “Add Vertexes to Bones” command. (First select a bone, then select the vertices to be attached to it.) There’s more about moving the bones and selecting vertices below.

Generating Bones

“Generate Bones....” by selecting a group of vertices in an arm or leg, torso or head, etc., and typing in how many bones need to be generated. The problem with this is that the bones seem to choose their own vertices in a haphazard way. To resolve this, select each individual generated bone (which also highlights the vertices attached to it) and then select “Remove Vertexes from Bone.” Move the end of each bone into position, and select and attach the correct vertices.


Moving Bones

At this writing, there doesn't seem to be a way to grab and move whole bones once they are parented. Instead, the location coordinates have to be typed in and tweaked until each bone is in place, or else the end points can be moved. As in Blender, the view has to be changed often while this is being done. To resize and move the ends of bones, first click the end of some other bone to get the coordinate pivot out of the way. Then click and drag the end of the bone that needs to be moved.

Poses and Animation

Creating poses and using them in animations is described in the second tutorial mentioned earlier in this Workaround Manual. Two important things to remember are: 1) After selecting “New Pose....” and setting the bone coordinates and locations, selecting “New Pose....” again automatically saves the previous pose. 2) To insert each pose in the timeline, select “Insert Pose....” and position it with the timeline slider. The frame position can also be selected by double-clicking the pose and typing the position in. It takes some tweaking to get it right.

Exporting to Unity

Scene Cleanup



You can import meshes from 3D modellers into dim3 inspire as Wavefront obj files or as fbx files. To use the animations in Unity, you should save as fbx file in your asset folder.

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