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I know there's an official troubleshooting post, but I figure I'll list out my own issues, troubleshooting steps, and solutions for the benefit of anyone else who is brand new to Spriter. In the first post I'll bullet out quick tips, etc. and I'll note details in subsequent posts if/when necessary. My thought is that what with all the keywords spewed out in these posts, this will make searching for certain solutions a little easier when googling or searching the board.

I'm sure some or all of this is addressed in the Youtube vids, the manual (I've read through it once already and should probably give it a second read), and the board, but heck, if anything I will enjoy reviewing my own progress as time progresses.


  • If you suddenly can't select an object or bone, check ALL associated bones / objects


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Suddenly couldn't select spriter's limb object / bone

I was tweaking some foot / leg animations and deleted some shin object keyframes, but not the shin bones. Moving forward I hopefully won't make that mistake again, but for a minute I for the life of me couldn't figure out why my shin bone was showing up in the expanded timeline and yet I couldn't select or manipulate it in the animation window. (Then I scrolled down a bit, saw I had deleted the corresponding shin object keyframes somehow, and smacked myself on the forehead). 

Anyway, all that said, are there any tips / tricks / precautions seasoned Spriter users can recommend specifically with regard to meddling in the expanded timeline? The timeline's pretty straightforward but I wouldn't be surprised if someone was like "Oh man, when in doubt, keep an eye on X, Y, and don't forget to check Z."


I was going to post the notes below to the board but figured out the issue myself. I felt I should still post them, as the keywords might help someone with a similar issue as they perform searches. 


  • I've created a humanoid composed of about 20 bones and their corresponding objects.
  • For the purposes of troubleshooting, I'll mention I followed the Youtube tutorial more or less to the letter with regard to the animation process (my only deviation was the number of bones and objects created; for example, my sprite has a neck whereas the Greyman does not). I completed a walking animation.
  • I went in to tweak the animation a bit, and must've hit something. For some reason I can no longer select the left shin bone or shin object.
  • Every other bone and object seems to function normally. If I pass my cursor over the left shin with Show Bones deactivated, the bone appears for a nanosecond just AFTER my cursor has stopped 'touching' it. I cannot select the bone itself in the animation window, even with Show Bones activated. 
  • However, if I hover my cursor over the sharp tip of the bone, the little semicircular rotation icon appears as normal (not for a nanosecond; it stays so long as my cursor hovers over it, like any other bone). However, clicking has no effect.
  • In the expanded timeline, I can hover over the shin bone's file name on the lefthand side, which highlights the bone itself in the animation window. My timeline is 0-800, with keyframes at 0, 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700. The shin bone only has keyframes on 0 and 400, so [aaand here is where I realized I hadn't checked the shin object. I scrolled down, and lo and behold, it still had keyframes scattered around].

I assume that because I had deleted the shin bone keyframes, and because the shin object is tied to the shin bone (mods, is the correct terminology that the object is a child object of the bone, or does 'child' only apply to other bones?), neither the shin bone nor the shin object could be manipulated until I made some corrections.

In my case, I deleted the shin object keyframes, but presumably you could add shin bone keyframes to complement the shin object. The latter sounded like more trouble than it was worth. 

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Unbelievable. In taking a break to post all this, I either forgot whatever trick I had uncovered to fix the issue, or I never actually figured it out, haha. Mods, can you show me what I'm missing here?

  • I still can't click on the shin bone or shin object, exactly as I outlined in the bulleted info above (thank god I didn't delete all of that). 
  • In the timeline, both the shin bone and object are keyed at my 0 and 400 keyframes (along with every other bone and object), but that's it. I deleted all keyframes for both the shin bone and the shin object at 100, 200, 300, 500, 600, and 700. Is there a way to dig myself out without deleting the remaining keyframes for the shin?
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It sounds like you simply right clicked and chose lock selected objects accidental at some point while that bone was selected. But I can't know for sure.. If you right click on a blank spot in the canvas you can select Unlock all objects and see if that fixes it, or save and restart Spriter and reload the project and it should be select-able again if that;s the case.

For potential bugs or issues as tricky as this I suggest you post a video of it or screen-grabs and share the file so people can take a look directly.



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Thanks for the assistance! I followed your instructions and took these steps:

  • Right clicked on a blank spot on the canvas
  • Selected 'Unlock all objects'
  • I then saved, restarted Spriter, reloaded the project
  • The bone and the object are both now selectable

However, the object reels away from the bone for a single keyframe. The bone moves as it should, but the object leaps away from it and, by the subsequent keyframe, returns to where it should be.

I clicked on the object's wonky keyframe in the expanded timeline and hit Delete. Its keyframe disappears for a second or so, then reappears. The bone's own keyframes are already deleted.

Just figured I'd throw out some details while they're fresh in my mind. I will post a vid tomorrow or as soon as possible.

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I'm guessing the save and restart/reload were unnecessary. Most likely the unlocking did the trick.

Your new issue of the "wayward" object sounds very much like you have the hierarchy changing inadvertently at some given key-frame.

Spriter lets you have a completely different hierarchy structure and number of objects per key frame.... you can introduce new objects, delete objects, or totally change which sprites are children of which bones on the fly throughout your animation.  This an let you do really cool things, BUT if you do it inadvertently, things can get very confusing.




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Thanks. That was precisely the issue. This finally got me to appreciate the hierarchy and give the hierarchy window the attention (and respect!) it deserves. During the rogue portion of a timeline (in this case, where only one object has gone rogue), which of that object's keyframes should be deleted? For example:

In the canvas:

  • Frame 400: the shin object is correctly associated as a child of the shin bone
  • Frame 500: the shin object has reached the furthest point of its rogue animation
  • Frame 600: the shin object is back in place over the shin bone

In the hierarchy:

  • Frame 400: the shin object appears as a child of the shin bone
  • Frames 401-599: the shin object is no longer a child of the shin bone, and is just sitting on its own lower down in the hierarchy
  • Frame 600: shin object is back in place

I would assume the answer is to delete the keyframe at 500, and that the rogue animations from 401-499 and 501-599 would automatically 'correct' themselves, creating a fluid transition between the 400 and 600 keyframes. 

The reason I ask is because after deleting keyframe 500, the shin object continued its rogue animation. Perhaps I should have saved and reopened. Unfortunately for troubleshooting / video purposes, I ended up deleting the remaining keyframes for the shin object and shin bone, but I'm still curious if an obvious answer would have solved the issue.

At any rate, this time deleting the keyframes stuck. It will not be much trouble to reanimate the leg. I bulldozed through what could have been a more informative troubleshooting stage to "save time" and here I am twenty minutes later after typing all this out, haha. Whatever, I guess at the end of the day if it helps my understanding of the program, it's time well spent.

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  • 1 month later...

Quick question--if I hide an object at a given keyframe, how do I unhide it later? 

Also, is there a way to select an object initially hidden behind another object (which, in a subsequent keyframe, creeps into view)? Selecting the object in the Z order, the timeline, etc. and right clicking does not give you the option of hiding the object, so my workaround right now is to select the bone, drag the object into view, hide it, and return it to its place. Just curious.

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