Grab These New Physical Dragger Features!

Hello there!

Over the past few years, our draggers have been living a double life. There’s always been the standard, geometric way to transform parts: you select a part, move it around, align it with other parts, and so forth. But in 2017, we added an Inverse Kinematic mode, triggered by the “Constraint” button. This was more of a physical mode akin to “reaching and moving things around” as if they were real, connected objects. Enabling constraints would run the physics engine and solve IK systems to manipulate objects in a more simulated, physical way.

We’ve learned that while some of you know about and love that physical mode… many of you didn’t know about it, were accidentally triggering it, and were frustrated when an anchored part unexpectedly didn’t move.

Today, we’re happy to introduce a user interface improvement that makes these two modes more explicit and simplifies the UI. The “Constraint” button is no more. Instead, there’s a Mode pop-up to toggle between Geometric and Physical dragging. We think that will both help avoid unintentional toggles and make the value of this mode more clear as you build!

To try this feature, go to File > Beta Features and enable New Physical Draggers.

Old UI:

New UI:

But we didn’t stop there—we’ve improved Physical mode to make it even better to use in two key ways:

Physical Freeform Dragging

Previously, even if you had Constraints enabled, if you used freeform dragging on an object, it would revert to Geometric movement. Now, we’ve added a new physical freeform drag that really is akin to reaching in and grabbing the object. This should help you quickly and easily test your constraints using natural movement. Here are a couple examples of how that looks:

Move a sea creature and watch the legs follow:

Move part of a complex physics rig:

Scope Selection Default Change

In the old UI, when you click on a part within a Model, Studio would always select the Model. If you Alt/Option-clicked on the Model, you’d select the specific sub-scope your mouse was hovering over. That works well in Geometric mode, but we found when we tested Physical mode, 99% of the time we wanted to select the end-effector sub-scope, not the entire Model.

For your convenience, we’ve swapped the default selection behavior in Physical mode. By default, when you click on an object, Studio selects that specific sub-scope, not the Model. Alt/Option-click on the sub-scope to select the Model. Please let us know if you like this change.

This video shows the difference in the default click behavior between modes:

Currently, when you use the draggers in Play mode, the Physical draggers are disabled and you are always in geometric mode. We’d like feedback as to how you’d like to use the Physical draggers in Play mode. Please let us know if you have a specific use case where they would be useful.

Let us know what you think, if you have any questions, or if you have any issues.

Kudos to @itsFrank17 and @LuckyKobold for this work!

352 Likes

This topic was automatically opened after 10 minutes.

This is so convenient! I’m tired of having to sift through a model just to have to rescale one little part I find unsatisfactory. Overdue update in my opinion.

29 Likes

Would it be possible for there to be an option to undo these changes so before the constraints were moved if I want to switch from physical to geometric?

4 Likes

I think Dua Lipa sums it up perfectly:

“Let’s get physical”

Anyways, this is amazing! I’d love to have a keyboard shortcut to switch between the two modes though. It takes some time to go over to the drop-down and scroll/click an option. The shortcut would perfectly accompany the shortcuts of the four tools (cntrl+1, cntrl+2, etc.)

Also, when trying to scale while having collisions on in physical mode, I’d expect for it to move the part, but it doesn’t. Is that intentional?

Regardless, an awesome update!

12 Likes

I’m used to holding alt a lot when moving things, so this change will take some getting used to. It seems like it’ll end up being a tiny bit more convenient in the long run, but for now I’m not sure I’ll like it. Was it really bad enough holding alt that this change was worth doing?

8 Likes

And this finally solves the problem of me having to go into a game and simulate the constraints!!

One thing though, the beta dragger, in general, is still causing some issues and there are still errors popping up on my output which quote failed to solve movements. Hopefully this can be resolved in the near future!

Phenomenal work as usual Roblox.

3 Likes

Hey, this is a pretty nice update overall and with that, I’ll be using these for custom figures and actions with some examples for some time in the future or now if possible.

Sweet! However, will the collisions and Join Surfaces icons be visible whenever you enable such a feature as I’ve enabled it and didn’t show the icons, not too much of a development issue but would be nice if it had room to do so.

Somehow, is this supposed to be intentional whenever you enable these properties with the Select and Move tool? To me, this is pretty weird whenever I somewhat enable this and when I disable this, I’ll probably post some report if this isn’t intentional and somehow get used to these weird movements.

5 Likes

Would there be a hotkey for this feature so that we don’t have to go up to the tab and swap it back and forth?

3 Likes

This is very cool! I’m super happy to see UI/UX improvements like this. This section on the ribbonbar is way better. Love clearly communicated mode changes. :heart::heart::heart:

@rogchamp You probably won’t be using studio in this dragging mode unless you’re intending to drag constrained objects, where it’s pretty much necessary to select a sub object. I don’t see a problem with the alt behavior being default in this mode.

I’m sold. Freeform physical dragging is the best.

27 Likes

While we were testing, we realized that the feature is essentially useless 90%+ of the time without holding ALT (basically anytime you’re dealing with models, which is most of the time). We figured the default behavior of the mode should be that in which it is most useful, and not one where it is only useful 10% or less of the time.

(note: percentages are for illustration purposes :slight_smile: )

8 Likes

Could you clarify what you mean?

3 Likes

I believe the collision/physical dragging is stopping it from scaling–it’s hitting a wall (or a part).

3 Likes

We only change it in Physical mode–in Geometric, it’s still the behavior you’re used to. And we found in testing that in physical mode, it did make life a lot easier!

5 Likes

If you have specific examples you could share, feel free to DM me, and I’ll pass them along internally.

3 Likes

Basically

image
|
|
|
V
image

(ugh discourse stop)

1 Like

Mind DM’ing me either a video or a place / reproduction instructions

2 Likes

Noted, thanks. We’ll make improvements before we take this out of beta.

4 Likes

Nice update, I think I wanted to do this but I didn’t know how to do it.

2 Likes

I’m sorry, I still don’t understand what you mean/what issue you’re having.

5 Likes