Here are our top recommended free maya rigs that you are allowed to download and use as a quick way to start animating. Most of these maya character rigs can also be modified as well as deconstructed to see the creators rigging techniques.

DISCLAIMER: Each rig has it’s own set of restrictions for use, so be aware of how you use them. Some allow for commercial use, and some do not.

Maya Rigs

Flying Fox

free maya rig

The Flying Fox rig is a very simple, yet great rig to use when first starting with animation. This rig will help teach you the basics of animation by focusing on weight and gravity. Mastering the tail animation is a great test for understanding those principles.
Download Flying Fox


FishBoy

Fishboy

FishBoy is a cartoony rig that is very squash and stretchy. Use this rig when practicing with volume conservation. You can get some very organic, squishy like animation from this character, so have fun with this.
Download Fishboy


Roboter

character rig

Roboter is a humanoid rig that is great for starting to learn human animation. Animating humans is by far the hardest task in animation. The robot aspet will help forgive any imperfection in your animation which makes this a good rig to start with.
Download Roboter


World Zombination

zombination

Wow these characters have such a great design to them. I’m sure you will find great joy in animating these guys.
Download World Zombination


Bonnie

bonnie-rig

Bonnie is beautifully modeled character with great rig control and facial expressions. This rig is highly recommended and is a great addition to this list. Check out Bonnie in action.
Download Bonnie


Nico

maya rig

Nico is an interesting quadruped rig that offers some nice control. Warning: this rig is for advanced users. Animating quadrupeds, with tails even, is a very challenging task. I recommend this rig once you are comfortable animating simple characters.
Download Nico


Daxter

daxter-rig

The Daxter rig is modeled after the popular Jak and Daxter game series. This is a great rig to test out some lip-synching exercises. The rig comes with a fully animatable facial rig which will allow you to get some very interesting expressions.
Download Daxer


Mery

mery

Mery is more of an advanced rig. She comes with dynamic hair options, but nevertheless she has all the control you could need.
Download Mery


Wolfdog

wolfdog-rig

Wolfdog is a very nice stylized quadruped rig that offers some nice facial expressions. This is a good rig to start with when decided to tackle quadruped characters.
Download Wolfdog


Hotel Transylvania Zombie Rig

Zombie Rig

This is an official rig form Sony Pictures’ Hotel Transylvania. If you have ever wanted to get something closed to a production rig, this is it.
Download Zombie


Street Man

Streetman-rig

StreetMan is a rig offers a superhero-like character that can be good when trying to animate a character who can defy the laws of physics. Having this little guy fly around can be a good exercise.
Download Street Man


Buckid

buckid-rig

Buckid is a very simple bipedal character that is a rig that is very limited in controls, which is a great thing. Bringing simple characters to life is very powerful, especially if when looking to land a job somewhere. Animators like to see that you can get the most out of your rig, despite its simplicity.
Download Buckid


Squirrely

squirrely-rig

Squirrely is a fun rig to animate with. If provides some great control, and the character design is very pleasing, which makes this is a great rig to use on your reel.
Download Squirrely


Simple Bot

simplebot-rig

Simple Bot is highly recommended for beginner animators. This limited rig forces animators to focus on the basics, like weight distribution. This is a great little guy to bring to life.
Download Simple Bot


Moom

moom-rig

Moon is an advanced rig that offers many features, including FK/IK switching, facial controls, ‘level of detail’ switching, and more. This rig offers the control of production level rigs, so getting good with this kind of rig can be very beneficial.
Download Moom


Ultimate Beefy

ultimate-beefy-rig

Ultimate Beefy is another simple, yet stylized rig. The proportions offer some nice variety to the other rigs. The character design is a nice bonus.
Download Ultimate Beefy


Morpheus

morpheus-rig

Morpheus is a highly customizable rig that allows you to create a very unique character for you to animate with. This rig has advanced controls and offers a lot of features.
Download Morpheus


Animatik

Animatik-rig

Animatik offers bendy limbs, which allow for interesting animation styles.
Download Animatik


Malcolm

malcom-rig

Malcolm is a free rig character for maya provided by AnimSchool. The rig offers a huge amount of control, but should only be used by advanced animators.
Download Malcolm


Vespa

vespa-rig

Vespa is a good way to practice animating an object. There are lessons to be learned about bring inanimate objects to life.
Download Vespa


Post any other great rigs you know of in the comments!

Julian

I write about all things interesting. My main hobbies are animating, coding, playing football and reading books.