So I'm starting to animate now, at last. I'm concerned about time restrictions and depending how long I anticipate spending in UDK I may have to drop my personal project animating the deer and simply work take UDK and rigging as separate sections.
So far this week I've been working on a melee weapon hit and a death. The death animation is very roughshod, but the melee animation is starting to come along. I like having a club as a weapon, as it implies a good hefty amount of weight, which is good practice for animation.