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FaceFX uses FXA files to communicate between UnrealEd and Max or Maya. This document describes some of the do's and don'ts of using this feature of FaceFX.
FXA files are a binary file format that contains only the data needed to play animations from your game. This data includes:
- Bone poses and the reference pose
- The Face Graph nodes and links
- Animation keys for all animations
- Phoneme and word timing information
- Face Graph node positions
- Node groups
- Any data used only in FaceFX Studio and not your game
FXA files can be imported and exported from UnrealEd by right-clicking on a FaceFX asset and selecting "Import from .FXA" or "Export to .FXA".
When you first create your FaceFX asset, you need to import the FXA file as described above. If you need to modify any of the poses in the actor or create new poses you simply export the FXA file, modify it from the plugins and import it back in. Any operation you can perform from the FaceFX plugins will not cause your FXA file to get out of sync with your FaceFX Asset. Feel free to "export - modify from plugins - import" all you want. Just be aware of the folowing things:
- If you export a new Reference Pose from the plug-ins, be sure to re-export all of your bone poses.
- FXA files contain only a subset of the information in the FaceFX asset, so don't think of them as a "backup" of your FaceFX Asset.
- Don't import an FXA file if you have modified the FaceFX asset from UnrealEd. In other words, after you export the FXA file, you should stop working with the FaceFX Asset until you have imported the modified FXA file.