Pivot Points - Studio Beta Update: Handle Summoning

The Pivot Point Beta released a couple months ago. We haven’t made a lot in the way of updates since then, but behind the scenes we’ve been hard at work solving the issues that you brought up after trying out the beta.

Today, we’re excited to announce a large set of changes to the beta, addressing the majority of your feedback!

If you’ve turned the beta off, please give it another shot, and if you haven’t tried the beta yet you can try it out by turning on the “Pivot Editor” beta in the Beta Features dialogue:

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Hold Tab → Summon Handles

I’ll start with the change that we’re most excited to announce.

When we introduced the Pivot Point beta we modified the Move handles to be positioned directly around the pivot. We received feedback that many devs found this handle placement awkward for accurately positioning parts. We had thought that moving the pivot to the area you’re working on would be a solution, but you found that too slow a workflow. We still wanted to draw the handles around the pivot (because future dragger features like planar drag will work more cleanly that way), but needed a way to ensure that manipulation is convenient for you.

What we came up with is a unique-to-Roblox solution that we’ve dubbed “Handle Summoning”. Suppose that you’re trying to Move, Resize, or Rotate a part, and the handles are not within view on the screen. Now you can simply hold the tab key, and the handles of the tool you have selected will be summoned directly to the location of your cursor, where you can use them to manipulate the selected objects. When you’re done, you release the tab key, and the handles will return to their normal location:

Rotating objects around a temporary pivot rather than a permanently edited one is another feedback item that we frequently received. We had held back on promising this, as we couldn’t find a clean understandable way to offer it, but Handle Summoning has solved this! When summoning the rotate handles, the selection will be rotated around the point that you summoned them to. This offers a quick way to rotate objects around the edges/vertices of your geometry – if you place your cursor close to an edge or vertex when summoning, the handles will snap to that edge or vertex:

The Scale handles can also be summoned for consistency. We debated having them behave like Move/Rotate but settled for a tweaked behavior where summoning keeps them within the bounds of selected object as we thought it’d be more predictable. We’d love your feedback about this behavior.

Pivot Point Indicator Visibility

Being able to hide the pivot indicator is the most requested Pivot Editor feedback item. We do still want to show the pivot indicator unconditionally (to increase future design flexibility), but we’ve made a couple of adjustments to address the concerns where its visibility was obtrusive. Please let us know whether you’re satisfied with these adjustments or still want a way to hide it:

  • Pivot Indicator hidden for multi-selections: The indicators are now hidden when you have multiple objects selected. This significantly reduces visual clutter, at no loss of useful information, since the pivot location only impacts tool behavior when you have a single object selected.

  • Pivot Indicator only shown contextually: The pivot indicator is now only shown when you have a tool which uses it for something selected. That means that if you select objects with the Select tool or other non-dragger tools in Studio you will no longer see the pivot indicator. (Community plugins can show the pivot indicator if they use pivots by setting ShowPivotIndicator = true on the DraggerService)

Pivot Point of a Multi Selection

You may already have seen this change a couple of weeks ago, but we’ve modified the dragger behavior in cases where you have multiple objects selected. Your feedback for multi-selections was clear: It is more convenient for the effective pivot to be the center of the bounding box of all the selected objects rather than the pivot of the most recently selected object. We now use the center of the bounding box in that case.

Small Tweaks

We’ve made many other small numeric tweaks to the visuals and behavior, including:

  • When setting the pivot with the Edit Pivot tool and Pivot Snapping enabled, the snap points now vary in size to reduce visual clutter, and you can set their color in the Studio settings dialogue (“Geometry Snap Color”) if their default color conflicts with your environment.

  • Made some minor adjustments to how the draggers handle edited pivots in Physical mode. We’re still looking to tweak this further and are very interested in feedback from developers who use the Physical dragger mode frequently.

  • The Move (and Scale) handles behave much better when dragging far off-axis or beyond the horizon. Previously the selection would sometimes jump backwards in the direction opposite of the drag in those cases, now it should never do this.

Thanks for your patience waiting for updates to the beta!

162 Likes

Are there any plans for Pivots to support Model resizing? I really wish that this will be a feature and I won’t need to use hacky methods to go around it. Thank you in advance for these updates!

13 Likes

This can definitely help to get a specific area where you want to rotate actual rotate instead of one piec rotated this is great! I would love to try and see this update to gain some more knowledge on how to rotate the way it is intended to :sunglasses: very nice update and a win for the devs!

11 Likes

As part of upcoming work on packages there’s a possibility that we will be adding a first-class Lua API for resizing models, and if that work comes through then it would use the pivot as the point around which the resize happens.

29 Likes

This is very cool! Thank you to the developers for such a pleasant innovation

4 Likes

I noticed that the tab selection doesn’t snap to the edges of parts. It’s tricky to rotate a part on a corner using this button.

4 Likes

Are we going to be able to select the pivot points for multi selections? This seems to the the only thing to be truly missing from the suite of options that this feature enables.

3 Likes

It should snap to the edges with Rotate, you just have to position your cursor relatively close to the edge (The threshold is 16 pixels). With move it does not snap because it doesn’t matter precisely where the handles are summoned to for Move – the result is the same regardless.

12 Likes

Depends on what the feedback is. The vast majority of feedback we got in response to the initial beta was wanting the effective pivot to be at the center. If there’s enough feedback now in the other direction we would consider having an option, but it’s a fairly expensive option to have (design considerations wise), because it would have to change the pivot indicator visibility rules too.

10 Likes

Is there a chance that you can add a button that removes this pixel threshold entirely so developers can get perfect accuracy?

Another thing, when selecting a point with tab, the cursor is blocking my view quite a lot. Adding a small point that shows where the pivot point is should fix this.

4 Likes

No, if you want “perfect accuracy” you should be editing the actual pivot to get that accuracy rather than using a temporary handle summon.

We considered such an affordance, but unfortunately it would have to be quite large and obtrusive, exactly because it would be covered by your cursor otherwise.

Give it some time and see what you think after getting used to it: In practice I found that I did not have an issue getting the summon to snap the way I wanted after I got used to it, even without an affordance showing where they will be summoned to.

We could tweak the pixel threshold used if the feedback is that it’s too small.

11 Likes

Can you make the handle summoning snap to edges and corners of parts?

4 Likes

It already supports this! If you place your cursor within 16 pixels of an edge or vertex when summoning, you’ll get a magenta colored indicator letting you know that the handles snapped to that edge or vertex.

8 Likes

Very cool! This will help me out a lot. One issue is that it seems like the easiest option would to just move your camera. Idk.

3 Likes

Any chance of being able to enter a worldspace position for the pivot point?

5 Likes

Oh Thanks Roblox! This will Help a lot!
I had the pleasure of being able to test it when (I think it ended up being accidentally released as a plugin) but still! I thought it was amazing! :laughing:

1 Like

What kind of use case are you typically trying to fill with this?

We turned it on briefly a couple weeks ago, but issues were found and thanks to the July 4th holiday release schedule it took is a while to get it turned back on with a fix.

7 Likes

Well, I had a few parts that I wanted to rotate around a given point, but keep them where they were.
Think a bunch of moons orbiting a planet - I positioned them, but then couldn’t set their pivots to the center of the earth.

4 Likes

Ah, so the Edit Pivot tool will let you do that, but you wanted to do it to a bunch of things at once so wished the properties pane could do it. Feedback noted.

8 Likes