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vertex animation from FBX into crowds as a clip


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I'm threading new ground here, trying to "get" crowd sims. I've done particles, fluids, FEM, and RBD so far and
I aspire to orchestrate a whole horde of people running down the

I was playing with the set up, but I couldn't find out how to add vertex animation into it.
I have 2 fbxs that I prepared, of a simple vellum cloth ball that's been retimed to look like its bouncing and jiggling in place. I'll add them to the post.

Now, my main question is about how I'd go about getting that info into the agent. Is it even possible?
The whole crowds system seems to be awfully "bone centered". 
One solution I could think of was to use the game tools skinning converter, but that is absolutely sub optimal, as I'd lose the wrinkles of the ball.

I saw this thread: https://forums.odforce.net/topic/32029-crowds-with-marvelous-designer/
In which user ATOM pointed out you can use MDD caches, but if that's the case,
how do you generate a .mdd, and integrate it into the sim?

I'm really curious as to what you guys have to say. I'm not afraid of VEX so don't hold back on that front haha




Edited by sasbom
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14 hours ago, edward said:

You use a MDD ROP (Output) node to write out MDD caches and you can read them back in using MDD SOP (Geometry) nodes. If you want instancing of the sequence, I think Packed Disk Sequence primitives are what you're looking for http://www.sidefx.com/docs/houdini/model/packed.html#packeddiskseq

Yes! I got the MDD's working at least.
As for the packed disk sequence, wouldn't that generally be the same as using a alembic cache, in the sense that it's basically "replacement animation"?

8 hours ago, anim said:

I don't think agents can hold pointcache animation, only static shapes and shapes deformable with bones, unless something changed recently

That's a real shame.. There has to be a way to force it in some way, right? From what I know, video games used to work with pointcache animation.

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