If the question is repeated, sorry in advanced, I looked around for couple of days and didn't find similar question or anything that solved problem for me, also I'm not a native English speaker so please forgive me if there's grammar issues.

I'm a huuuge noob in blender with 2 weeks of experience so far, I'm making mods for game as a motive for me to keep familiar myself with blender. Currently I knew basic manipulation with meshes and now I wanted to create animation with game assets, but there's a problem.

The character model already has an armature attached on it, and the animation I want to work and based on also has an armature, what I wanted is attach character model on the armature with animations.

I tried to unparent all meshes from their bones and try to attach them on animations with ctrl+J, doesn't work.

I also tried to directly select two armatures and use ctrl+J to make them link together, this time the character model is doing the intended animation, but the bone itself is hugely tilted like it's laying on one of the axis and it doesn't replace original armature, so it's like a set of unused bone with .001 at the end of every unused and duplicated bone.

Both armature has identical bones and all with same names, is there a way to simply replace one armature with another armature while keeping animations or attaching meshes to armature with animations?

  • $\begingroup$ The concept you are attempting is referred to as "Animation Retargeting". There is no one way to do this, and it is certainly not a push-button operation. There are tools and tutorials online on how to do this, but without knowing the particulars of your model or your goals, we will be unable to help you. $\endgroup$
    – Kirbinator
    Jun 23 at 18:02
  • $\begingroup$ If the two armatures are one clone of the other (same bone names, hierarchy, bone roll, rest pose, constraints and drivers, .....) and they differs only by their names (i.e. armature.001 and armature.002), you can try to select the armature which is already parent of the character, open a dopesheet window, turn it into an action editor and choose from the dropdown menu the relevant animation you want to perform. So it's not to assign to the character a new armature but it's about assigning to the armature a new animation. $\endgroup$ Jun 23 at 19:59
  • $\begingroup$ If this doesn't work you need some retargeting procedure, which is probably beyond your actual knowledge, you need to start from something simpler. $\endgroup$ Jun 23 at 20:00
  • $\begingroup$ -Kirbinator I think I can't give my file to you because it's game files, the goal I wanted to achive is, I wanted to edit the animation, but that armature has no character attached to it so I'm really hard to see what changes or even what bone am I moving. So I wanted to attach a character to it so I can see what's happening and then modify it. $\endgroup$
    – Aero
    Jun 24 at 5:21
  • $\begingroup$ -josh sanfelici The Action Editor successfully made the character do the intended animation, and the original armature with animation disappeared so I guess they're somewhat merged? but it's still heavily tiled like laying on one of the axis, is there way to change this? $\endgroup$
    – Aero
    Jun 24 at 5:26

1 Answer 1


As far as I know combining a mesh and bones doesn't work with ctrl + j. You have to do this with ctrl + p and select "with automatic weights".

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I tried to do this while unparenting all mesh from bones and then use automatic weights to parent them but mesh bend in horrible way so I think it's not suitable for me. Thank you for answering though! $\endgroup$
    – Aero
    Jun 24 at 5:27
  • $\begingroup$ Could it be that the mesh deformes because either, your rig with the animation or your unparented mesh doesn't have the scale applied? $\endgroup$
    – Daniel
    Jun 24 at 13:56

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